Sunday, August 17, 2008

Sunday is Cleaning Day!

Today has been all about cleaning and making my apartment perfect! After waking up soo early today, I decided today would be the day to get things done. I cursed at the stupid washing machine all morning long, as all it would do is beep at me! Thank goodness for Katie, who lives right across the street- she was nice enough to come over and show me how it worked. Quite simple really once you know which button to push:) I washed all of my rugs and the new one must not have been that great of quality, because it literally turned into a mess of pink fuzz in the wash!

I explored some of the not so nice neighborhoods for cheap apartment stuff and found a discount home furnishings store kind of like Daiso- but also carries higher priced items such as blankets and electronics. I was on the search for an alarm clock. Apparently most Koreans like the old fashioned kind with the bells on the top! I ended up settling for one of the few digital alarm clocks I could find at Lotte Mart. Now if I can actually sleep well tonight, I will have something to wake me up for my first day of teaching at Poly School!!!

I scrubbed the apartment from head to toe today, which was not very fun but needed to be done. The kitchen sink and stove are now sparkling and I scrubbed the mold off of the wall in the laundry room. I also got on my hands and knees and scrubbed and wiped all of the floors so they would be perfect. It seems the swiffer I got never gets all of the dirt and it drives me nuts! Everyone takes their shoes off as you enter the house and the floors still seem to get sooo dirty! I am looking forward to winter in a way- the floors are heated and I bet that has to feel amazing on your feet!

After all the scrubbing was done, I went back downtown and got some Korean Dumplings. I think the lady at the dumpling place knows me now- today she taught me the Korean word for my new favorite food- Mandu. Mandu is minced pork with chopped veggies wrapped in a thin piece of dough and then steamed. How delicious!!! They are very gentle to the stomach so I have been eating them quite often. I have also been living off of: Gatorade, Diet Coke, Orange Juice, Pringles, and these little Korean cookies that have creamy chocolate in the center. Yum! Don't worry, to counteract all of the horrid eating habits, I am walking everywhere! And I like walking here, as my path to downtown is right next to the river. How relaxing to hear the trickle of the stream, have dragon flies buzz over the trail, and feel the tall grass tickle my legs. Sigh!

In my search to find an extra blanket, I have been pretty surprised on the lack of selection in the bedding department here. There are lots of bedding stores but they all have the same things- thin quilts in horrid feeling polyesters and terrible floral patterns. And how overpriced they are!!! Most of these aweful blankets are $40 to $140!!!!! Koreans don't know the comfort of a nice snuggly microplush blanket and so I don't get that comfort either. Darn it!

I am learning a few key Korean words now such as "Thank you" and "Hello". Going to the store is sometimes difficult because Koreans like to be helpful and often end up puzzled and esasperated in their efforts. I will try to learn some new words everyday but I know the process of learning a new language definitely does not come overnight.

I looked at pets today at Lotte Mart and they have some weird ones that we don't have in the U.S. such as hedgehogs and larve you can grow in to your very own beatle! They are sooo gross! The larve are about 1 inch wide and 4 or 5 inches long and kind of just wiggle in the dirt a little in a plastic cup. The cool thing about them is that you get to watch them transform into a beatle so educational, but super gross and ugly! Can you imagine if your pet larve or giant beatle got loose? Ew!