It’s not goodbye; it’s smell you later.

Well, I’ll start off by saying that I probably won’t be broadcasting new posts all the time in my Facebook status too much anymore, since I’m sure it’ll get annoying, so make sure to check back every day or two for new posts.

Yesterday I was supposed to go to KoreaTown here in Chicago, but it never really happened. My mom and I drove through it, and while there are a lot of Korean things there, half of them are restaurants, and the other half are an even split between liquor stores and pawn shops. I had done some reading about the area and apparently it’s one of the most ethnically diverse zip codes in the country. Unfortunately there’s just really not that much to do there.

Instead we ended up going to see The Crazies at a movie theater nearby instead. It was a pretty good movie. It wasn’t a zombie movie like it looked like it might have been, but close enough. I don’t even really remember what we did afterward. Must not have been anything too entertaining. I did get my flight information though, which was a big relief. It started to seem that it was going to be a real last minute thing, which made me a little uncomfortable. The total trip is going to be 7056 miles. Having a number for it seems really weird. It’s a long way away.

Today all I had to do was go back to the consulate and pick up my passport with the visa in it.

It’s a pretty cool little sticker. I don’t know why it took two days for it to be applied to my passport, but whatever. I got there half an hour before the time they said I could pick it up, and they said it wasn’t done processing it yet, so I had to wait there for half an hour.

I did get the opportunity to meet a couple guys who were also headed to South Korea. One was a first timer like me, and the other was a guy that’d been teaching in Seoul for the last two years. I took the opportunity to talk to him about it and he loved everything about it. When we asked where he was from, he even said Seoul, though he did admit that he grew up in Ohio not too far from Columbus in Fairfolk county. He obviously really loved it a lot. As I read more and more blogs, sometimes I do stumble on bad things about Korea. Apparently some of the less reputable institutes will refuse to pay teachers on time or for their overtime, they may threaten to fire you before the end of the contract so they don’t have to pay for your flight home or your extra month’s severance pay. Conversely, they do allow the foreign English teachers to form unions and there are legal channels to go through if an employer isn’t holding up his end of the contract, so I guess it’s not really any different than things here. It just seems scarier since it’s on the other side of the world.

After that my mom and I got dinner at a pretty nice Greek place. When we got back to the hotel, my mom left to go back to Columbus, so I’m here in Chicago for the last day and a half by myself. I probably won’t even leave the room because I don’t want to be spending any more money than is entirely necessary before I actually get over there.

For my flight I’m going to have to get up at like 6:30 AM, arrange tomorrow for a taxi to be at the hotel around 7 AM, and then just get through check-in and whatnot in time for my 9:10 AM flight.

The title of this blog is kind of indicative of my whole attitude towards goodbyes. They make me kind of sad, but for the weirdest reason. With all the moving, transferring schools, etc… that I’ve done, I’ve grown kind of accustomed to saying goodbye to people. Whether it’s temporary or permanently, goodbyes have kind of lost their full effect on me because I’m so used to eventually just having to say goodbye to people. It doesn’t mean I valued people as friends any less, but just that I’m used to every year or so just finding myself in a situation that calls for me to have to say goodbye to people. I feel bad about that because I know for other people it’s a lot more emotional, which makes me feel like I should be more emotional about it, which in turn makes me feel bad. I don’t know if that balances out or what.

Anyway, I’m going to head out. The next day and a half will probably just end up watching a lot of TV and trying to learn a little bit more Korean before I head over there.


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