Monday, April 23, 2012

It's officially time to bounce

One of my amigas down in Mokpo just sent me a text, saying, “You won!”

I’m sitting here at Gate 122 with an hour to spare before I board my plane to Dubai. I feel triumphant after completing my year-long contract, but extremely tired. I’ve had about seven hours of sleep over the past two nights. Seoul does not have a train that goes straight to the Incheon Airport, so I had to wait in an empty parking lot for thirty minutes at the train station, waiting for a limousine bus. I was told to wait 20 minutes for an orange bus, and ended up catching a purple bus after 30 minutes. I wish things could always go as planned. Little unexpected things can lead to big anxiety, especially if I’m trying to catch a flight.

I spent my last couple days with friends, jumping on trampolines, watching movies and drinking smoothies we were told were lemon-flavored, which turned out to be peach. Again, things never seem to go as planned, but the smoothies were still good, so no complaints.

Living in Korea and having fewer opportunities to make friends has taught me to appreciate my friends a lot more. I wouldn’t let any conflict, no matter how small, go unresolved. It would be a pity to let any dispute destroy a rare and valuable friendship, especially in the Korean countryside, where good friends are hard to find.

Most of the farewell festivities were fun, but I was really upset one night when a guy stalked me and my friends after touching my chest and how NOBODY intervened, even in a crowded bar, where we pointed our umbrellas at our stalker, yelling “Stalker!” and “Disgusting!” “Go away!” Even with all the negative attention, he continued to gawk at me and say, “Mmmmmm. Body curves.” Korean women often scream and pretend to detest male affection, which is probably why nobody came to our defense, and why the stalker himself did not know if we were being serious or not.

If you are wondering what I'm going to miss the most about Korea, it's this little girl with orange glasses. I met her while volunteering at an orphange in Mokpo. She would always want me to hold her hands and spin her around instead of teaching her the alphabet. I don't blame her. Spinning around is way more fun.