Sunday, July 24, 2011

Random Things

I'm tired for no apparent reason, but I feel like I'm neglecting my blog, so I'm writing a list o' randomness. I really don't know why I'm tired- I've been sleeping a lot (and having crazy dreams, to boot), I've been eating normally, I haven't really been stressing (or at least I don't think I have). Something fishy is going on ... probably the fact that I moved to a foreign country.

Here's the random list:

- Gyms here are referred to as "health" in conversation. Keep in mind that there is no "th" sound in Korean, replaced by an "s" sound. It's odd, to say the least.

- It rains here, more often than I'm accustomed to. And I forget my umbrella almost always. I live on the 11th floor, and I don't realize it's raining until I'm on the first floor, then back up to my place I go to get my umbrella. (Ahem, this happened today.)

- Walking = hell on shoes and feet. I didn't realize how little I walked around in the US unless I was specifically somewhere to walk (hiking, the beach, whatever). I walk everywhere here, and my shoes are not happy. My feet are even less happy.

- Almost everyone (unless it's a part-time job) gets paid monthly. It seems that everyone in Korea gets paid on the 25th of each month. I have never been paid monthly before, and it seems terribly, terribly wrong. That's a lot of money, what if I spend it all at once?? (I won't, but it's the thought that's terrifying me.)

- Eyelash extensions are really cheap here, and look really good (a co-worker got hers done). The one time I contemplated getting them in the States, it was $200 for initial application. They are 30,000 won ($28.50) here, and look better. What the heck?

- The dollar is still falling. I am not pleased. At 1,053 won and counting...

- I haven't been taking many pictures lately (and I was totally called out on it by my sister yesterday) because I've been senselessly tired and also being cell phone cameras in Korea all have this issue. You cannot mute the sound! Apparently (well, according to my friend Google), it's a law in Korea that all cell phone cameras must click when taking a photo, to prevent people from taking photos of unaware people. And to prevent perverts from taking photos up a girl's skirt, I suppose, but Korean women wear SUCH SHORT SKIRTS that really, they're asking for it. This whole camera click thing is vastly irritating to me, and makes me not want to take pictures with my phone unless I'm at home.

- I caved and bought cheese and wine. Well, I bought "cheese" and wine. Don't judge a desperate American! My great-aunt (maternal grandmother's younger sister) says Costco has good cheese. She's lived in Europe, so she should know. I need to find someone with a Costco card and a car.

I bought this wine at Homeplus, where two girls helpfully wrapped up the bottles with these foamy sleeves so that they wouldn't break en route to my house. Since people generally walk here, portability is figured out really well. Handles on packages, protective packaging for breakable things, all very nicely thought out.
Yes. It is squeezable "Camembert" cheese. It tastes like those Handi-Snacks from ye olden days when I was a wee tot. It's not bad, it's just not Camembert. Sliced cheese here is awful. They have sliced Velveeta, which I don't need, since I won't be melting cheese into anything (and Velveeta is only good for melting). They also have sliced Gouda, which is ... awful. Pre-sliced cheese should just be American and yellow, like Kraft.

- Customer service is so different here. I don't know if I'll ever get over it. People are so ... helpful. And there's no tipping, so it's just ... normal. Bizarre. For instance, at the Lotte Department Store's grocery market, if I pick up a bunch of grapes and look like I'm getting them, a dude materializes and packages up said bunch of grapes in a plastic bag, asks me if I need anything else, and then disappears when I say no. Crazy. If I look around like I'm lost, someone will come ask if I'm looking for something in particular. Shops are generally alarmingly well-staffed.

- I've been going to Bethel Church. The sheer size of the place still overwhelms me. It has stadium seating in plush red chairs (like an opera house) and all the chairs are numbered. There's a complicated lighting rig, a large choir, an organ, all kinds of things. It's more like a theater than a church. There's seating outside the main sanctuary, too- groups of chairs for people that are late, separate rooms for people with babies, and just ... so many people.

That's it for now. I'm sure there's more, I'm just groggy and can't think up anything at the moment. Yawn. There's some sort of work thing on Thursday ... I have no idea what's going to happen or where we're going. I'm dreading it, I have to be nice and such. Ugh.