Its been a busy couple of months. Plus I'm a total slacker when it comes to blogging.
My parents came to visit! I'd be lying if I said it wasn't a much needed break from my crazy Seoul life. For awhile there, I couldn't help but stay up all night and was probably spinning a bit out of control. It's just a little too easy to stay out and have fun in Seoul. It's truly the city that never sleeps. I don't know a better cliche to describe this city with. Either way, it was awesome having my parents here! They're so cool. And I'm not just saying that because I know they're reading this. (well maybe a little bit). We had a great time. I spent a lot of time at their hotel and exploring the city with them. They even came to visit a few of my classes. The kids got a kick out of them and loved the Twizzler's that they brought. The highlight was having my 6 year old (5 years american age) kindergarten students see my dad and say, "You're sooo big!"
Halfway through their trip, I decided to spend a little bit of money and bought myself a new camera (Nikon's D70). I absolutely love it and spent most of my time shooting pictures while we explored. Needless to say, I'll have a lot of pics to post on the web sooner or later. I will be spending a lot of time editing/ uploading and will update when they're all up.
The first weekend they were here was Chuseok, an equivalent to Korean Thanksgiving. We had a long weekend (5 days) from work so we took time to hang out. We met up with my mom's aunt, Karen, who I met back in March; her grandmother and cousins. It was really cool to experience the city with my Mom. There's so much that has changed since she lived here and it was interesting to see what she remembered. We made it back to Ewha Women's University where she attended for one year before she moved to the States. So many of the buildings around campus have changed, not to mention the surrounding mini-shopping district that now exists there.
We also made it down to Busan and Gyeongju on a second long weekend. I was able to take off a couple of days from teaching and have a mini vacation. Busan was great. I guess the best way to describe it is a mini-Seoul on the beach. The PIFF was going on which is the P(B)usan International Film Festival. They had a lot of things set up for it the day we arrived. My dad was even interviewed by some TV station!
After a couple days on the beach, we headed to Gyeongju, Korea's old capital dating back to the Silla Era. It was amazing to get out of the city. All of the houses in Gyeongju have certain restrictions and must be built in the traditional form. And, it was so GREEN! I missed breathing the fresh air and actually seeing stars in the sky!
The only downfall to the trip was, well, the return to my daily life. The main thing being returning to my bed. I have come to realize it may be the largest cause for all of these back problems I've developed since being here. So, today after work, I went out and bought a yo, which is pretty much a thick pad you put on the floor to sleep on. So far, it's feeling rather nice and much better than my bed. I'll have to see how the coming week or so treats me.