Life has slowed down a little in the last couple of months, mainly due to a feeble attempt to save money, but I’ve still gotten up to lots of fun! Winter is quickly setting in here in Korea, and I wanted to make the most of the last two months of warmth before I spend my weeknights and weekends holed up in my apartment wearing all of my jumpers at once.
October saw me facing my first true nerve-wracking experience as a teacher. Sure, teaching itself makes me pretty nervy, but in the middle of October I had to do my first ever open class. An open class is when the students’ parents come to watch a (meticulously planned and rehearsed) lesson both to see how their sprogs are doing and to check out the teacher. I think mine went pretty well, but I still haven’t had my feedback for it, so watch this space…
Bad Farmers in Sinsa-dong, just off Garosu-gil, is p e r f e c t if you're craving a great salad, as I often find myself after all my carb, fat and salt-heavy school lunches. The avo-cob bowl (top) was *so good*. I'll definitely be going back! I spotted this place over on @thesoulofseoulblog feed, thanks Hallie!
I made a healthy decision…?
Seven months. That’s how long it took for me to truly crave a salad since moving to Seoul. It was also aided by The Soul of Seoul posting an amazing photo of a salad on her Instagram, but I was also in need of a true, decent salad. I’m not talking about the lettuce, apple, raisin, kiwi, soggy strawberry (and who knows what else) excuse for a salad that they serve as a side dish at my work. I’m talking about a fresh, leafy salad with a good crunch to it, some meat and a solid dressing. So I went to Bad Farmers in Sinsa-dong, just off Garosu-gil, and floated away on a green, salmony cloud.
Tradition meets modernity
On a beautifully sunny Friday in the middle of September, my school went on a trip to Sungkyungkwan University, where our kindergarten students learned the proper ways to bow, how to pour and drink green tea, and how to make a traditional Korean snack. Because it was close to Chuseok (the harvest festival and the biggest holiday of the year, also called Korean Thanksgiving) all the students wore their hanbok and the teachers could too! I don’t have a full hanbok of my own because they cost a fortune to have made, but I had been waiting patiently for the perfect opportunity to wear the modern/fusion hanbok that I had bought online a month before. They’ve been incredibly popular for well over a year now, and I adore them.
By far the biggest happening of the last two months was my parents and boyfriend coming to visit me in Korea! During the Chuseok holiday which gave me almost ten straight days off work we gallivanted round Seoul with a quick trip to Busan in the middle. I had such an amazing time showing them all the things I do here in Korea, and it was amazing to see them enjoy themselves in a place I love so very much.
Let’s taco ’bout Mexican food
I don’t know what it was about the end of summer that made me crave burritos every damn weekend, but that’s what happened. I’ve eaten more Mexican food in the last couple of months than I had in my entire life beforehand, and I’m not even mad about it. I’ve found my favourite independent spot (Taco Loco in Sinchon), an amazing ‘chain’ restaurant (Julio of which I have visited the Garosu-gil branch) and one to give a second chance to but only due to poor service, not poor food (Coreanos; another chain). I am not familiar with authentic Mexican food, but I adore all three of these restaurants and have had my positive opinions on them backed up many times by friends and strangers alike.
Fashion Week first-timer
If you haven’t seen my post on my Seoul Fashion Week Survival for Beginners tips, or spotted the many photos I posted across my Instagram, you won’t know that I went to Seoul Fashion Week for the first time! It was miles out of my comfort zone, but it was a LOT of fun and I’m so pleased I went. I was lucky to have Fii guide me round, and I’m already excited to go to the next one in March/April next year.
The summer finally came to an end and in came the autumn weather. I had a wonderful summer, filled with so much fun and amazing memories. I only hope that my first winter in Korea can provide me with as much enjoyment and activity. We shall see, as the weeks continue.