Pay Day

I GOT PAID TODAY!!! I have been waiting for this day for SO long! It is such a good feeling to know that I have money for everything I need now: stuff for the apartment, rain boots, and FOOD! For the past week and a half, I’ve been living off of $40 that I borrowed from a friend and have ONLY spent it on food – cafeteria food, that is. As much as I liked the cafeteria food when I first arrived, it’s starting to gross me out a little (even though it’s just psychological, now that I know how much MSG they use) and I’m really looking forward to getting some real, non-processed food tomorrow after work!

My “weekend” honestly wasn’t too exciting. I stayed in Tuesday night and watched the movie that we would be discussing today in Spanish Club (I’ll tell you about that later). Yesterday morning, I cleaned my apartment and FINALLY located the dumpsters outside after walking around for a while. I had accumulated two bags of garbage, one bag of plastics, one bag of paper, and one bag of bio-degradable food, and were all sitting on the floor next to the front door. I knew that I should have gotten rid of them long ago, but I didn’t know where the dumpsters were and was just too lazy to go look for them until absolutely necessary. Once I could smell the bio-degradable stuff, which I kept in my freezer so that I would NOT smell it, I knew that it was absolutely necessary! After completing those chores and having lunch at the cafeteria, I went to the bank and finally picked up my bank card. I had opened my account 2 weeks ago but never went back to pick up my bank card; I figured it wasn’t too urgent considering I didn’t have any money in there. The rest of my day was pretty boring since I still hadn’t gotten paid and didn’t have the means to do anything “fun.” I didn’t even go to the Halloween party at the pub.

Today was boring, too, but good since I got paid. My plan was to check my balance at the ATM, have the bank lady help me wire money to my Bank of America account so I can pay off my credit card, then go shopping at Costco. However, it turned out that the money would not hit our accounts until 5:00pm and so I didn’t end up going shopping. Since I had no other plan for the day, I ended up just hanging out at my apartment and chatting with people online. I met with Caleb half an hour before Spanish Club and he taught me a few important words and phrases in Korean, plus the “basic” Korean alphabet. I learned some interesting things:

  • There is one letter for both the R and the L sound in Korean, because they sound very much the same; however, it sounds more like an R when at the start of a word, and more like an L at the end of a word (my name being a perfect example of such instances)
  • Many sentences end with “-yo” at the end of a word, and I learned that this indicates formality/politeness
  • Words in Korean ALWAYS end with a vowel; that’s why, when speaking English, they add syllables to words (which is something we are constantly correcting with students… in cooking class, for example, I have them practice saying “egg” instead of “eggu”)
  • The alphabet, though it appears quite daunting, is actually quite simple and has fewer letters than the Latin alphabet
  • The number system is easier in Korean; for example, to say 11, you would say “10 1” and for 20 you would say “2 10″… it’s just simple math, really

I’m going to practice my Korean this week and Caleb will quiz me next week and hopefully teach me some more useful words and phrases.

Spanish Club was fun, except that half of the members didn’t watch the movie and we didn’t end up discussing it at all. We played a couple of games, which were pretty fun. It’s definitely good practice to be “immersed” in the language and to be forced to think in it; that’s exactly what I wanted, and although I’m not hearing good Spanish, I can always practice listening by watching movies in Spanish. The only thing that sort of bothers me about the club is that there are a couple of members who correct people when they make a mistake… except that MOST of the time, their corrections aren’t correct! (And that isn’t an exaggeration.) It’s annoying, but also slightly amusing.

I am bummed that tomorrow’s Friday. Fridays are half days: one class in the morning, closing ceremony, lunch, then meetings the rest of the day. You already know how I feel about weekends…. I don’t know what’s in store for us this weekend since Halloween is over, but I’m guessing we’ll do a lot of lesson plan development. Monday is also a half day since we get our new kids and spend the morning in orientation. Tuesday is really the only full day of teaching for me, and it’s the only part I like. I promise this is the last time I’ll complain about it… I just needed to get it out one more time. 🙂 At least I’m on weekends temporarily.

I checked the tracking number for Glenn’s documents online today and all it said was “in transit.” He sent them 2 weeks ago and it should have taken only 10 days. It’s looking like he won’t be here for my birthday and I’m pretty bummed about it.

Well, time for bed, ’cause tomorrow’s Friday. Wish me luck.



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3 Responses to Pay Day

  1. Alice La Russo says:

    I’m glad you’re sharing about the language. Thanks for the mini lesson! And yeah to pay day!

  2. HRH says:

    Rachel, keep up the writing! It is fun to read. I think their L and R sounding much alike explains a lot; when Koreans are speaking English, they seem to get them confused, which can be amusing. Have a good weekend! At least you are not expected to get up at 6am to take pictures of crazy people tailgating 5 hours before a game begins!

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