Saturday, September 18, 2010


I woke up yesterday feeling that I have closed a chapter in my life here in Korea and I am now entering a new phase although I have no idea what it could be. I am not upset or mad at not getting a contract and feel quite happy about it. I hope to be going home in December but have not heard if I will be getting a ticket home at that date. To be honest, I thought these good feelings may be because I may have had too much coffee, but the feeling persisted this morning.

I write and read everyday. W. Somerset Maugham in his book, "The Summing Up", stated that he derived a great deal of joy from reading and it was hard for people to understand this. He remember the thrill of first reading a page of some book or another. He would put down books and go out and live life as he was supposed to. He said life is to be lived and experienced in all of its complexities and that meant food, love, and whatever. However, he always returned to his books. That is what I am doing now other than writing. I am reading whatever books I can get my hands on now. Even the book, "The Summing Up", I am reading for the second time. I am reading other books for the second time savoring their words and seeing things in them that I did not see before.

I am paying more attention to the world around me and enjoying Korea and its people while I am here. Before, I think I was more wrapped around my problems and never really saw it. It was hard to take walks as the heat made it difficult to do so. Now, I take walks and enjoy the parks around my apartment. I bring my journal and colored pencils that I recently bought. The changing of the leaves have not really started yet but should soon.

I think I am learning a new philosophy here since I have to depend so much on my own company. I am learning not to care what others think of me and my abilities and whether or not they are true. I realize that this way of thinking is called "co-dependency" but getting rid of that concept in one's own life is very difficult. I think I am making some headway. It lightens the load on one's shoulders considerably.

There is so much more joy in my life and that is good of course although I am not sure where it is coming from. I watch children playing with their parents and grandparents in stores, older people working in their gardens and I can appreciate it here in Korea that so many of them are still working very hard so late in their lives.

When I start to give myself a bad time for not doing this or that I cut it off as soon as possible. The real key to all of this is to live a mindful life. It is easier when one is 65 years of age than when I was younger. I thought the future stretched out there forever. Now, I know better. I see my children becoming middle-aged so I can't lie to myself and say I am middle-aged anymore. I listen to music for the sake of listening to music and less to drown out life's problems. Coffee or no coffee, the sunrises are much more beautiful these days.

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