So here I am sitting in a Cafe in Seoul with a warm Latte thinking about the last year and contemplating the future. Packing up my entire life and moving to the other side of the world was a strange thing to do at the time, but even stranger was the theory of doing it for no real apparent reason. I wanted more but I wasn’t really sure what that ‘more’ was, and to be honest I still don’t know what it is, but for the most part I think I got it. More money, more time, more appreciation for the people in my life and of course for life itself.
One of my favorite places in Korea...Gyeongbokgung Palace!
One of my favourite meals in Korea...Chicken BBQ! YUM!
This year has produced some eventful moments. Moments that I could never have anticipated. From quite literally having the time of my life one minute to having the absolute worst the next, it has been one heck of a ride that's for sure. I have done things that I would never have dreamt of before, like spending Christmas in Australia or kayaking in Vietnam’s Halong Bay. But I think the best thing has got to be just learning how to live on my own, in a completely foreign country where I don’t know the language or for that matter, anyone else around me.
Kayaking in Halong Bay, Vietnam
Christmas in Sydney, Australia
The solo trips abroad and basically being surrounded by my own company way too much has been a massive learning experience, and at times I have hated it more than anything I have ever hated before. However, after a while you sort of learn to love it and it has been those lonely nights spent with my adult colouring book that has taught me the most. I have learnt how to read Korean, write prose poetry, meditate and of course colour in like a CHAMP!
I have made some amazing friends and lost some not so amazing ones too. I have taught children and never loved and hated them so much in all my years. I have gotten outrageously drunk until 8 in the morning, cried in the middle of Seoul and mentally packed my bags on more than one occasion. I have laughed, I have laughed so much. I have met people from all over the world and learnt many different things not only about the Korean culture, but other cultures too...including my own.
...I have eaten bugs
I have written a lot of crap, and some average stuff too. I have stepped over the border into North Korea, hiked mountains and lost my phone, wallet and dignity far too many times to count.
So I think its safe to say that it has been a truly unique experience that has to some extent changed the way I look at things. But, after all that has been said and done I can honestly say that it has been 100% worth it, and (although I've had my moments) I wouldn't change a thing. I think it was a wise ole man somewhere in wonderland that once said...
“IN THE END… We only regret the chances we didn’t take, the relationships we were afraid to have, and the decisions we waited too long to make.” - Ole mate Lewis Carroll doing his thing.
So on that note, I'll leave you with a small head nod, a quick hat tilt and at least 10 high fives.
From Seoul, South Korea... 안녕히 가세요(Bye for now!)