As I write, I sit amongst my scattered belongings and tumbleweed dustballs. My things have disappeared quite slowly: the futon was snatched up by a guy and a mover before I left for Taiwan. I was greeted by an even emptier apartment when I arrived back from Taiwan – the woman who wanted to purchase my bed could ONLY pick it up on the Saturday that I was gone. So Martha really helped me out by being at my place to help the movers in my absence. When I walked in, Zooey was crouched under my coffee table, surprised at seeing a familiar face rather than strange people moving things around.
I don’t know where to begin…. the trip to Taiwan was exactly what I needed. In lieu of preparing to leave South Korea, I was really stressing myself out. I was imagining that there were all of these “To-Do” lists, numerous people to see and hang out with again… and I just loathe planning things, especially when it’s about me. I don’t really like orchestrating events and hosting parties, but I had a lot of time to think about what I wanted. So I got to spend time with great friends, see some awesome sights, and have thought-provoking conversations. I spent a lot of time in-transit on planes and buses, so instead of listening to music I did a lot of writing and reading.
I realized that my sole “To-Do” list was not as frighteningly extensive as I had imagined it to be.
The now… it was comforting to see Zooey when I returned from Taiwan. I saw a lot of stray dogs and cats in Taiwan, so I was constantly thinking about how he was doing and if my friends were taking good care of him while I was on vacation. Even thought my apartment was a shell of what I worked so hard to furnish, he peeped out from under the coffee table and reminded me that this place was familiar. I’m insistent that he knew that things were changing and that he was the last to go. I spent a lot of time with him before he was picked up on Saturday. I met up with the woman who was taking him and it was truly sad to hand his carrier over to her, he was hardly meowing. That little guy really made things interesting at my place. Having him here really inspires me to have another pet back in the States, maybe a dog.
Since being back, I’ve gone out a few times and I’m glad that I did the planning. Last night I finally got to go to Mad for Garlic, a renowned Italian restaurant just near my place. There were nine of us and it was great just to sit back, enjoy a good meal with good people. I have realized that one year is not enough time to create substantial relationships with everyone. I am definitely departing with three or four solid friendships that could possibly endure long distances, but otherwise, I am a bit sad to leave some people without really knowing them.
I could definitely see teaching or going abroad again, but just like I felt as if the timing for South Korea was perfect, I know that it is good for me to return home for a while. In this year, while I have learned volumes about myself and got the chance to experience Korean culture, I still do not know what I want to pursue for a career. I’m not disappointed, but I just thought that I would have figured it out by now. However, I am confident that my vision will be much clearer when I am back in the States.
I really cannot summarize my thoughts and feelings in one lone entry, so I will leave it at that. To those who have read and to those that I haven’t done a great job communicating with, I am sorry. Time does make fools of us all, but I will be back in Ohio on Tuesday, August 12th, around midnight. My flight may be the longest one in history, for many reasons, so I will probably be tired when I get back.
I don’t have grandiose plans for when I am back on U.S. soil, but I will be starved for Western food and entertainment. 🙂
That’s all for now… see everyone soon!