In the middle of September, I joined a website for people looking for language partners, called conversationexchange.com. It’s been one of the best decisions I’ve made here so far: I was contacted by over 30 Koreans within two days, and by now I’ve gotten messages from literally hundreds. I haven’t followed up with all of them, but I have chatted with a fair number on Skype or Kakaotalk, and I’ve met three in person so far. At least one of those has become a regular, weekly language partner for me – we have dinner and coffee on Wednesdays, and alternate English and Korean. In the case of another, we really hit it off and beyond just being language partners (it’s mostly one-sided in that we communicate 99% in Korean), we’ve already become good friends in general. He’s helped me with a ton of stuff, from buying a used iPhone to checking my homework (and commenting on it in much greater detail than either of my SNU teachers). Plus, he’s generally just an awesome person to hang out with, especially because we have a surprising amount in common. I’ll call him WG on here for now. This post will be about the day we first met, after a week of instant messaging on Skype. We spent the day in his hometown, Anyang, which is a satellite city just south of Seoul in Gyeonggi-do. Continue reading
I’ve been in Seoul for well over a month now… O.o Funny how time passes so quickly.
On Sept. 28, I received my alien registration card (exactly four weeks after applying), which is making my life here much easier since it finally allowed me to get a bank account and smartphone, view Korean-only Cyworld pages (necessary in order to check out the websites of most SNU extracurricular clubs), etc. After the immigration office, I met up with a couple of my classmates to work on a class project, for which we had to make a video about a few famous places in Seoul. Our group was supposed to introduce Daehakro (대학로, an area famous for its theaters and nightlife), Naksan Park (낙산공원), and Iwha Maeul (이화마을, a small neighborhood famous for its wall paintings). It had been raining all afternoon, but fortunately stopped shortly after we met up around 5 pm. In fact, the weather turned out to be incredibly beautiful for the rest of the day, with the perfect temperature, breeze, late afternoon golden light, and sunset…. Continue reading