walking around a new neighborhood in seoul

(left: my new slideout phone. Typing in Korean keys were challenging at the beginning but, I think I got hold of it – although I’m still slow at SMS typing)

(right: a quick shot walking Teheran street near)

It’s been about 10 days since I’ve arrived in Korea… It feels like a month to me. During these days, I was so driven to do a huge list of things to do to get a new place to stay in Seoul and also to prepare my classes to teach. I’m new at teaching a semester long design studio class so, it will take many hours for me to prepare at least.

It snowed the night I left NYC and it snowed the first morning I arrived at the campus then it also snowed at night I was returning to Seoul after finishing teaching and working for 3 days.

It didn’t piled up a lot but, it was thick snow flake… it made me feeling kind of melancholy.

After all, I’m alone here as a new foreigner who does not appear to be one. (smile)

Anyway, I found a nice temporary furnished apt to stay near COEX (Samsung subway station) It’s near high rise buildings and institutes… I see many businessmen walking during day (yeah, I spotted some westerners easily, biz types) I finally managed to get an internet service and then went to E-land to buy some electronic stuff and install a wifi router and a printer. whew~ what’s next? I went to an E-Market and bought all the necessary stuff – such as good coffee and a French Press Coffee Maker… finally, I was able to drink some decent coffee. I got a laundry detergent so I can finally test the washing machine in my apt…

Basically, I haven’t had any decent time to myself last 10 days. I had very few moment but then I had to focus on what to do next… finally my list is getting shorter. In fact, I’m a bit afraid to reflect deeply in a long personal time because I might feel alone all of sudden. I really don’t know that many people here and I need to start from scratch to build up my social life, I guess. A quite a change if you know me from NYC.

If I start to make list of good and bad in simplified form:

– I’m really losing sleep due to my jetlag but, also fall alseep immediately exhausted everynight

– I’ve seen more snow so, made up for snowless New York winter this year

– I really love heated hard wood floor in my apartment

– Foods here are very healthy…lots of veggies and cheaper, except when I go out to drink and eat at bars (still cheaper)

– It’s a bit difficult to find the kind of wine I like but, I managed to find some at E-Market and the price is good, I’ve got two bottles of red wine today, Pinot Noir and Cote du Rhone… I also saw Rioja on the shelf.

– Taxi is equally expensive as NYC but, transportation is generally cheaper

– There are many organic and environment friendly products here

– I got a new name stamp made for work, with a cool font design in ebony wood

– My office people tend to call my cell very often – even on my day off

– Air quality is pretty bad here. I hear that yellow sand storm is on the way here early this year

– People look at me kinda funny eating alone in the restaurants. (Do I have a choice?)

(more list )

– The subway station is way too big for me to walk between different lines… was it necessary?

– I’ve managed to find Bikram yoga studio here – called ‘Hot Yoga’ it’s half-ass hot yoga meaning, room temperature instead of 105 F degree…it’s better than nothing so I’ve already managed to practice twice…!

– Many people at school seem to be wondering how old I am but, not daring to ask me… I think I will enjoy it by not giving them any hint.