It has now been a few days since I arrived and I’m not feeling as clumsy and melancholy as two days ago. A few skypes home and a plan for the coming weeks, as well as some exploring and saying ‘yes’ to little adventures with new friends. I’ve noticed that it is not just living in Korea that I have had to adapt to but rather a complete process of letting go and giving into the flow. I can’t control everything and things are not as fixable as they were previously. I can’t just sit on the phone to Centrelink for an hour on hold while I’m here to sort out the payment issue, I’ve had to email them and my Australian simcard doesn’t work here so I can’t log into MyGov. So there are many limitations but I have also managed to find some workarounds that are making things easier… and it will get easier, I do believe that.
So the plans for the coming months include the following:
- Being aware of the days I have left in Korea (113) and having a plan for my final week including what day I’m packing and how I’m getting to the airport for departure – this sounds a little negative, but it’s working so I’m not questioning it.
- Discover as much as I can about Korea and Instagramming my experience and day to day life.
- Inviting my fellow international students to guest blog and share their exchange experience from their cultural point of view and why they chose to study here in South Korea. I’ve met a ridiculously talented and gorgeous group of individuals who I’m stoked to be here with… I can’t wait to introduce them to you all.
- Korean food is equal parts “delicious”, “quirky”, “fascinating fusion” and “what even?” and during my time here I’ll be blogging about each type, down to the faces made while eating (not necessarily my own).
- Korean stationery. The end. Well not really, because there is a whole world of Korean products that I’ll share and may even post or bring back to Aus with me.
- Interviewing my international friends about life as an exchange student specifically at PKNU and what tips they would share with people from their home countries. Most of us have noted that is has been confusing to say the least. There is little to no information online about what it is like and what to expect so we’ll change this by building the resource for future students coming to Busan.
- Finally, how I am dealing with my culture shock and homesickness and the feelings associated. It has surprised me greatly that I am not as resilient as I initially thought I was and that I’ve been so affected by the transition. I’ll share this with others and what I have done in the hopes of making it a little easier for those who experience the same, dizzying disorientation and physical ache.
So apart from some planning it has been a lovely weekend of relaxing and catching up with my family and friends. I love you all dearly and am missing you like crazy… today is international orientation day and only 113 days until #CathAndKimchi returns.
NB: Thank you to everyone I have spoken to/skyped with/chatted with in the past two days… it has meant so much and I look forward to our many catch up sessions throughout semester including Eurovision Skype funtimes!