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My heart's across the ocean, but I'm just fine

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February 18, 2010 | 09:52pm
Mood: bad
Music: Woodpigeon - I Live a Lot of Places

Today I went to Seoul. It was a long, long day: 15 hours. The worst part is that I've a cold, which means I've spent the entire day coughing and sneezing and feeling like crap.

I got up at 4am, showered, met up with Nigel and Jen (a new teacher) at FamilyMart, and we went to the train station. Then we took a train to Seoul, which took about 3 hours. Then we took the subway to where we needed to go for our seminar.

The seminar was essentially a lesson on how to use our textbooks. I've been teaching from the same textbooks and powerpoints for two months now, so this was not news to me or Nigel. Seriously, the only thing I found useful was the games the other teachers play with their classes (time fillers, oh boy!). Jen found it useful, as did the other teachers from other franchises of our school. I will say this: I am damn glad I work at this school. No bosses playing mind games, no lying or going against our contracts, no leaving out huge bits of information (like the fact that we have powerpoints, which books we need to use, etc). Then again, some of these people were pretty, well, oblivious. I don't know.

After our seminar we took the metro back to the train station and just narrowly missed the train back to Gwangju - "narrowly" meaning we were trying to buy the tickets at 1:45, and it was, in fact, 1:45. Yes. The next train left at 4:10, so we had several hours to kill. We ate, walked around the train station - which is full of stores and markets of various stripes - and just chilled. Eventually we caught the train and came home. Then Nigel and I got dinner at Han's Deli, which was delicious. Now I'm home and ready to pass out.

Being the materialistic person that I am, I'm contemplating buying myself some stuff for my birthday, which is in over a month but I like to plan early: a wireless network for my new apartment, a PSP Go (a portable gaming/internet device), and a watch. That's in the order of how much I want each of them. (Although - and let's be honest here - at the top of the list of what I want for my birthday is "a boyfriend," but people tend not to be material possessions, which is why I left it out. On the other hand, this would be a great present! Hint hint. Oh, wait. sigh.)

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Comments {3}

what a beautiful song

from: sebscam2003
date: February 22, 2010 11:55am (UTC)

Well it sounds like you had one of those hectic but memorable times away ... Safe and home now though ... >:-)

So yeah this track from Woodpigeon - I Live a Lot of Places ... where did you find that ... i seem to miss the nice cool music ... i would love to hear that tune float out of an ipod while sat having a picnic on the side of a mountain looking out to sea or across a still lake ...

You know ... a friend of mine who also teaches kids out there never mentioned that there was little to no vegetarian foods >:-( ... mind you he was mainly going on about all the girls he has out there and how i would like the boys ... not really the kind of thing that makes me want to get on a plane for though ... I may sound like a prude but the idea of going there to have cheap fun with the local boys is not much appeal ... What ever happened to love and the romance of a long term relationship you hope will last a life time? ... oh well lol guess i am a loner on that one ... >:-S

I remember once going around the delis collecting up bread and cheeses ... Then with a crate full of beer and some wine heading up into the Blue ridge mountains above Charlottesville to have a picnic out of the back of my friends dark green 1957 Chevy flatbed truck ... man it was good ... the air fresh and the scent of the forest still clear in my mind ... Sometimes it is something simple like fresh baked bread and cheese that can fulfill the senses better than any high class restaurant meal ... with the tunes on the trucks stereo drifting out from the open doors it just made you want to dance ...

I hope that you have a wonderful birthday ... when it finally arrives ... maybe you could spend the day wandering around one of those temples you see in documentaries ... well whatever you do i hope that you have a lovely time ...

hugs and love from me XxX

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Re: what a beautiful song

from: aodh
date: February 22, 2010 02:20pm (UTC)

Yes, it was very hectic but memorable - glad it happened, but I'm even more glad it's over now!

I download my music from hypem.com (the Hype Machine). You can find a FANTASTIC live version of "I Live a Lot of Places" by Woodpigeon on YouTube, just do a search there and you'll find it.

You could certainly get by being a vegetarian here - Koreans wouldn't necessarily understand why you're not eating meat, but vegetables are so prevelant in every meal that it would be easy to just avoid eating the meat. Now, being a vegan would be far more difficult - especially if you aren't willing to just pick around the meat.

Cheap fun with local boys? That's not exactly common in this part of Korea, at least as far as I can tell. Being gay here is not easy, and most Korean guys are closeted. When I mentioned a "boyfriend" in my entry, I was thinking about a specific guy, and I wouldn't want to hook up with him - I like him far too much. Then again, I'm like you, I don't hook up or do "cheap fun," I only look for long-term relationships. Again, it's hard here, but whatever.

That sounds like a great time, getting bread and cheese and going into the mountains...

Hah, my birthday is a month away, so I have some time to go yet. I also work that day (1pm-10pm) so there won't be any wandering around temples... maybe the weekend prior to that. Thank you kindly...

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Re: what a beautiful song

from: sebscam2003
date: February 22, 2010 03:42pm (UTC)

Thank you so much for taking the time to send such a full reply ... I have checked out the hypem.com and faved it ... that was mighty cool of you ... seems like a place to visit often ... Pop stuff is all well and good but sometimes i like stuff that feeds my brain and the emotions it then creates ... the memories and even sometimes the tears ... so thank you >:-D

I am happy to hear that i am not alone in seeking out only Long term relationships ... they take work but man i feel it is the only way to learn about oneself and the one whom you hold close ... hopefully you can make his heart bump in your direction ... >:-)

Yeah ... as for the cheap fun with the local boys ... well as i say i do not know much about the place where you live ... but ... I think Leigh lived in a city near to a US forces base and was teaching in a school in that area ... I figure it was in the narrow streets of Seoul that he was referring to the local totty though ... He told how ... when at bars ... the boys would be very affectionate and pretty ... which i guess is no exaggeration considering my friend is very much straight ... he figured it would be a great draw for me ... where as ... in fact it is the very thing that put me off going ... i just did not want to be in a big group of straight lads all having their fun with the girls and trying to push me into experiencing the local boys ... just not my thing at all ... heck my last relationship was 4 and a half years long ... i don't want to do hook ups ... i get too paranoid at the best of times with the things guys do and what they may pass to me ... silly perhaps ... but that's the way i roll ... seems you are the same ... which is cool ... i do not have any gay friends really as i do not do the gay scene ... it is a shame you are so far away i think you would be a good friend to hang out with ... especially exploring things like those temples ...

I think ... when your birthday does roll around ... that maybe you should get up especially early and go to one of the high up temples then quietly sit as you watch the sun rise up from the east ... casting its golden glow over you and the land ... i am not one to celebrate birthdays myself ... but it would be a great time for personal contemplation ... to take in the world you reside and to think of where you are at ... literally and metaphorically ... Perhaps it will bring you focus for the year ahead and allow you personal time to reflect on how far you have come ... after all you have already done more than most do in a life time ... well done you ... >:-)

Yah the bread and cheese thing was a mighty memorable time ... I think the simple pleasures of life are very much that ... I figure it is easy to surround ourselves with the 'trimmings' of the modern world ... but in truth ... it is those things that have always been with us that bring us a pleasure unimaginable in perhaps a DS or PSP ... fun though they are ... (no offense) >;-P ... After all I too have gadgets but the time i spend on those things i never recall ... what is it they say ... Waiting for Godot ... i am always waiting for that feeling of hope to arrive so i can feel happy about the way things are rolling ... I think your riding a good enough wave ... just make sure you take a good look around before you hit the beach ... >;-)

Feel the happy hugs dear friend ... feel their warmth and know you are loved ... happy Tuesday ... or is it still Monday for you? ... no it cant be ... anyhooo thank you very much for the swift reply love and hugs from me XxX

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