Tuesday, November 3, 2009

So far removed...

The musical blender alarm clock spun it's artificial milkshake letting me know  it was a new day! The cheerful tune roused me from my sleep I pulled off my black lamb eye mask determined to start my day with a cup of coffee and a real breakfast. Which consisted of a clementine and a Korean doughnut twist ( which lies somewhere between a the taste of a funnel cake and the consistency of sponge cake) it's not very sweet... it's an accquired taste. After breakfast, I headed for the bus stop, my soundtrack this morning cosisted of Adele's Crazy , Natasha Beddingfield's These Words, Cassidy's B-Boy Stance, Mariah Carey's Shake it Off, Trey Songz' Cant Help but Wait and Junior Mafia's Get Money. I know... it's a crazy conglomerate of songs but thats what you get when you put your I-Pod on shuffle.I miss American radio, never thought I'd say that. Thanks to some strange Korean restriction on certain internet content Pandora is a no go. Any solutions people?
I will have been in country, two weeks tomorrow and I feel sooo far removed from everything American. When I studied abroad in Italy I missed out on sooo much American pop culture... it took me almost a year to catch up and I was only gone 5 months. I cant imagine what I'm going to miss.But let me say. the kids over here are crazy about Beyonce and Lady Gaga. Oh and of course my ill rapping skills! ( yes I did just say that! me rapping... so laughable) However I can't say I miss home, but I miss certain American comforts, like being able to READ ! lol No seriously. I am truly enjoying my experience thus far, the good severly outweighs the bad. I live on the other side of the world, rent free, paid well and eating all kinds of crazy things. What do I really have to complain about? I am truly living the life I always wanted for myself and that is an amazing feeling. For all of you who read my blog, I hope you too are living the life you want. " If you dont like you situtation, then do something about it!" No if, ands or buts about it. Life is too short for second guessing and ardous planning with no action. Okay enough with the Tony Robbins moment,back to what I'm sure all of you read this for: the ridiculous American<---->;Korean language/cultural exchange.
So yesterday my VP and Ms. Kim came over to check out my apartment, to make sure it was up to par. Now in previous blogs, I mentioned how sweet and cute my V.P was. At the apartment , he and Ms. Kim inspect the bathroom. He asks in Korean where I wash my face, since he doesnt see a sink. Me being the excellent communicator that I am,  I act out waching my face in the shower. He and Ms. Kim giggle. He then says to Ms. Kim " What about when she's not showering?" She translates for me. I again rely on old faithful, showing him through a fun game of charades how I wash my face without showering. The V.P and Ms. Kim  burst out laughing. I'm sorry... did I miss something? What so hilarious about washing your face in the shower? He asked if I had a basin for my face... I look to Ms Kim for the translation. ( it's like we're playing an international version of Telephone) I shook my head and replied " Aniyo". The V.P exchanges a few words with Ms. Kim as I wait for the translation. " He will get you a sink" she says, while he smiles with his kind eyes. I smile and say " gamsamnida" to the V.P. He then proceeds to look at my windows making sure they are thick enough and at my appliances.On top of my fridge sits the Holy Grail of breakfast cereals, the V.P looks strangely at my Cinnamon Toast. Thinking to myself... (He better not get handsy I might have to slap someone). After a once over he and Ms. Kim bow say how much they like my apartment , my decor, and that we will all go to dinner next week. Better prepare my vocab and sharpen my miming skills.
This morning I enter the office with the usual "Anyanghaseyo" and take a seat at my desk. A co-worker Mrs, No a.k.a Dr. No ( she cracks up everytime I call her it) gave me a black bag containig two plastic cider bottles (Oh B.T.W Cider is the Korean equivalent of  mix between 7Up an Ginger Ale) I thank her and put it under my desk. Let me backtrack for a second...yesterday I typed up a notice in my best Hangul, asking teachers to please donate plastic bottles so that I can make a vocabulary bowling game for my students. A few minutes after the first bell this morning my V.P ( a.k.a my Korean grandpa) comes in with a huge black bag. He bows and gives it to me. Inside are at least 15 bottles. How cute is he. Ms. Kim explains that yesterday after work he went around to recycling bins in his 3 piece suit collecting bottles for me. Oh Grandpa Hyun...
While sitting at my desk " Dr. No" comes over to me and says the "Vice Preenceeble lubs your hair! He think you are very beautiful today". I smile at him and say " gamsamnida" I'm not sure if some things were lost in translation. For instance the other day when Fran and I were waiting for the cashier at E-Mart, she motioned for us to sit down after I gave her my card. She said " Waste some time". " Waste some time?" Fran and I mouth to one another, somewhat confused. " Oh, you mean... wait" I say " Ne, Ne" she replies. So one can never be too sure what is being said. Don't get me started on Google's English translation of Korean movie websites. Inglorious Bastards: ( Korean Translation)  The Bad Guys by Qwenten Tahrehtikno Ummm... yeah something definitely went wrong somewhere.
Next week I'll be getting a new cell phone, and in Korea, there is a cell phone store literally on every block. There are so many choices. I havent the faintest idea what to get. And I thought it was tough picking out a phone  stateside. For the past few days I've been scouting out the Korean versions of the LG and Samsung websites. Let me just say my fellow Americans, you are being had. The Korean version of these websites and the products they offer are monumental in comparison to their meager American versions. ( wah, wah, wah!). So as you probably have guess on the phone front, LG ang Samsung seem to be leading the pack. Did I mention these two companies monopolize most products in Korea. LG even has a healthcare line here!SMH! I'm almost tempted to pick up a Korean child and check for the LG logo on it's foot. This is your life...made by LG!

Oooh yeah.. Korean teachnology ...
Possible Korean LG theme song " Dont you wish your technology was hot like Ours?"
Be sure to click the pink TVCF tab in the middle of the screen. Sorry I had to tease you a little bit!

Confucuis say: Beware Americans...Samsung and LG will some day rule the world one must pick the which logo they prefer

1 comment:

  1. Tiff, an extended family in Korea......you must be blessed! Gotta love the bottles for vocab bowling!