Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Things have changed. I have no idea why they have and no idea in what way they have changed. I think being in a different culture is like a bull being in a China shop or at least for me. I am sure I have broken some rules inadvertently. As for my students, I am sure things are fine between us and the administration of the university where I do most of my teaching seems to be just fine. It is the host family that arranged my stay that is the problem, if that is the word that can be used.

I mentioned at one point that I can't live in two cities at once because it is getting too much to travel back and forth in one week. I think I am too old to live from a suitcase. Still, I thought I was getting along with the families that I was living with. It is hard to know when you upset people and when you don't. At one point I declined a local food because I felt I might be allergic to it and I don't eat as much food as Koreans do. The host cook thought it meant that I did not like Korean food. It took the hard work of a translator to convince her that I love Korean food and that I have allergy problems with some food and that I don't eat after I am full.

I am sure I have pulled some mistakes on more than a few times. I was never meant for the diplomatic corps. I think I did something and am going to be taken to task for it today. I hope I won't be deported for it. Again, I am fine with my students, but who knows what I did with the host family.

I do enjoy Korea and my classes. I enjoy teaching English far more than I thought I would. I have been teaching myself the alphabet and the language. I would hate to give that up. I have learned if you don't use a language that you have learned you lose it.

I will write when I know what is happening or have more information. I owe some money to the host family in an effort to get along here and I have no idea how much. I asked my son help in getting an itemized amount since I have not been successful in this. When my son tried to find out, he discovered that the contract for bringing me out here is changing. They have been asking me to pay for things that I thought they would be paying for. Again, I don't know if this is what is upsetting them. My son doesn't know either. His wife, my daughter-in-law, speaks fluent Korean and is trying to speak to them by telephone. I will just have to be patient and find out what is happening.

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