Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Last Night

Tonight is the last I'm going to spend in the United States for a while... I spent it packing and playing Settlers of Catan with my cousins. Time well spent, I think.

So now that I have about seventeen hours before I leave for the airport, it's time to go over my pre-departure to-do list. Number one... SF! I did go -- multiple times, actually -- and I got some souvenirs from the Far East Flea Market in SF's Chinatown, reportedly the best and cheapest place to buy tourist-y things. I also used my time in SF and Berkeley to prepare some cultural lessons, in a way: at the recent Giants-Dodgers game at AT&T park, I shot some short movies that I'm going to try to turn into a video lesson on baseball. (Also -- the Giants won! Woohoo!) I also interviewed some friends of mine who are students at Cal. It's for giving my future students some American college aspirations, I guess!

As for other teaching materials, I've brought along some magazines which I don't think will be terribly helpful, as they are not at a very low reading level, and they will also be outdated by the time I actually start teaching. Oh well, at least I can read them. And I also brought some Taboo cards which should make for a fun in-class activity, as long as I tweak the rules a bit to make them easier.

I finished Level 1 at TalktomeinKorean.com, and I'll spend all my plane time and the first day of Orientation doing a bit of review. The hope is that I won't be placed in a beginner-level class, even though my grammar and vocabulary is still way below intermediate.

In addition to the very useful podcast lessons on that website, I also watched (and finished!) my very first Korean drama, called Dream High. It's kind of like Smash, more like Fame (not really like Glee, I must admit). It started out pretty awful, but after three or four episodes I started to get very attached to the storylines. And while the series finale left me a bit unimpressed, I at least now have a bit more knowledge of some Korean pop stars. Also, the drama's theme song is stuck in my head.

Dream High's beautiful cast of mediocre actors
And yes, I cut my hair. In fact, I almost shaved it all off. No photos for you, though!

Lastly, I've finished packing. I really tried to pack light. One large suitcase to be checked, one small suitcase as a carry-on, and one backpack. The larger suitcase is just shy of the fifty-pound weight limit, and it is filled with nothing but clothes. The smaller one has basically everything else. Does it seem like a lot to you? I'm actually taking less with me to Korea (for one year) than I took to France (for one semester). So I think I'll be buying some more clothes while I'm over there.

Oh, one more thing... Mission Peak! I only hiked up once. Maybe I'll sneak in one more tomorrow morning... should I risk it? Haha.

Good night, moon. Next time I see you, I'll be on the other side of the world!