Thursday, January 31, 2013

Dear Penelope, [part 1-departure]

Much has transpired in the last week, that were I try to recount it all, it might bore us all to death, but of course that's exactly what I'll try to do... the processing must begin somewhere.

 First: it was freezing. Let's start there. And I had shipped my coat the day before. It took a bit to determine what layering combination would work best. My last day of work. My least favorite student wasn't there and as i stared at her empty seat i realized my other least favorite student hadn't been there the day before either- at which point my eyes gazed heavenward to God's infinite mercy. And there were lots of last looks from students coming and going and smiles and waves. And there the day went rather ordered, and the end rather awkward where sg tried to first shake my hand then hug me. She's been isolated I feel for far too long. As she thanked me somewhat matteroffactly and said she was bad at these things. That was after first wanting to keep me the full hour at the end of my day, then saying no i could go, and then rescinding the offer since she didnt want to finish my grading for me. It was my fault since I should've just thrown them away in the first place or not even tortured the students with them, and saying rather idiotically that it was "challenging but i'm glad i did it". As it is I was treated to my last greentea bingsu by my coworkers with cranberry decked egg tarts and a cappachino. And then home to pack. And mtoo trying to induce me to stay at a lovemotel. Oh godhelpme.

Second: I met Yesal and Sara for a last cuppa at the coffee farm. Divine. And then onward to the yearlongwait for the early dweller settlement village. She tried to charge us and seemed puzzled when we told her we lived on the island. We sat in a hut, we froze, and then we went to eat fried chicken. It was amazing. Cut up, eaten with our fingers and chopsticks, and pickled radishes on the side. I crave it even now. I should've paid attention however to the subtle signs of Jeju trying to reject me, but one remains optimistic despite because the good of the coffee and chicken outweigh. Because then after not finding socks and a 1/2 hour wait at a bank that wouldn't help me close my account we played the worst 2 hours of smbrothers ever, only to be outdone by going to Jeong-ehs for the last time and being told we couldn't sit because there wasn't any room and then being obstinate about it we stood there until in a savingface sort of way they allowed us to crowd in once they saw we weren't leaving. Then there was being overcharged 7,000w at the sushi place and yeasl being forced to intermediate with her k-skills. and leaving tearful because they were basically assuming she was a liar. So we just left. And then the startled look of the server at the pajon place who just seemed terrified to encounter foreigners again! It was best that we called it an early night. Though it ended on a lovely note with an almost tearful goodbye to the innisfree lady saying she would never forget me. We took our picture together. Yeasl bought me a nailpolish named Caseopia. Stardust and paintspeckles all in one.

Third: The last day. It was one of those things with a whole bunch of very quiet introverts and Mtoo. Sentries and unsatisfying hurried goodbyes. Where i was too tired or frazzled or emotionally brimming for proper goodbyes or gushing farewells. My last breakfast delicious. My too heavy pack. 18.5kg. The last giveaways. Giving sg the key as mtoo waited in the taxi. Getting edgy with her speaking korean which complicates things because then instead of being succinct in our directions it becomes a convoluted guessing game- where is mini-mil? Do you mean here? There? Oh hell! We arrived early. They wouldn't let us in until we waited 10minutes after and began knocking and drawing sad faces. Dammit mini-mil! Honestly!

We played speed scrabble. We had a taste test of americano v. my dutch handdrip. Obvious difference even in the blindtastetest with cookie palette cleanser. Delight.  Agoodmoment. And then mtoo giving me a hard time for being on a budget in seoul while i'm on vacation. Which almost made me lose it and finally came to a point where i told her she had to stop or else. At which point she realized just this once, that it wasn't going to, shouldn't be all about her. Or otherwise there would've been some rather unpleasant things said, as I shook my head looking tearful and violent about it all being a bit too much. Since though only expressed with an occasional "i'm sad" my whole earthy self was being displaced and oozing into the ocean. That said, despite protestations that we could stay longer I felt already that we could delay the inevitable no longer. So we hailed a taxi and mtoo and me went off into the afternoon. I was able to text Y later to express dissatisfaction at the rather hurried half hugged departure. I blame mtoo for disrupting the balance but then without her it wouldve been hard to drag myself away from the combined loveliness of e, y and s. And emily insisted i take her jacket to seoul. Aww...

Anyway, till tomorrow.
Part 2... i know. wait, what there's more!? oh hell! in writing and catching up I will perhaps find myself back in the present where i belong. Eating lychees out of a bag and chocolate bark and trying to fight sleep because it's only 930.

my love, m.


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