Well, for Grant and I, it has been an interesting year in many ways but especially physically.
Grant had back surgery in December. I ran a marathon in March and somehow got a tear in my ACL during the training process and actually ran the marathon with the tear and a pulled groin. Also, ironically I got a large abrasion during the marathon which led to a not-so- exciting: staph infection in my armpit that does not seem to want to go away(good times). I've never had a staph infection or knee problems, and Grant has never had serious back problems.
I'm writing all of this while laughing to and at myself for all of these things happening. It could be soooo much worse and the irony is just too much not to laugh. I mean of course, all of these things would happen while we are away from western medicine, natural remedies, home remedies that you pick up at Wal-Mart, and dear family and friends. However, we have been truly blessed with family and friends who have sent us incredible care packages! Thank you!!!
In so many ways it has taken us out of our comfort zone and made us rely even more on God, which has been truly rewarding.
The above photo was taken last night while my Mad Scientist/Doctor hubby was trying to remove glass from my foot. I know of course with all of the things listed above of course this would happen, right? Grant accidentally broke a glass cup a few months ago, and we thought we had cleaned up all of the glass... apparently not... This picture now represents one of my most favorite memories of my husband. He was so intent, tenacious, and focused on getting the glass out. I think you can see this in the photo.
1. People running or bumping into you is considered a normal, everyday occurrence… 2. Kimchi is served with every meal. 3. You HAVE to separate you trash for recycling(not a bad thing). 4. While shopping you feel as if the shopkeeper is a leach or a monkey that is about to jump on your back, no personal space whatsoever. You feel as if they are breathing down your back. 5. You are constantly stared at because you are a foreigner (pretty basic for living in an Asian country). 6. While ATTEMPTING to try on clothes, the shopkeeper promptly takes away your clothes to get a BIGGER size because you are an AMERICAN with hips. Then trying to convince the shopkeeper that she gave you the wrong size equals fun times! They will not let you buy clothes THEY don’t think will fit you. 7. Everybody thinks you are extremely tall. 8. Women are socially scolded and frowned on for smoking in public. 9. Everything on TV, in stores, or in magazines has to be CUTE even if it is a toilet seat cover!!! 10. People try to rip you off in the marketplace (probably pretty common when being a foreigner). 11. People take the word of their doctor as the ultimate truth without researching and take a shot in the butt as a cure for everything. 12. Eating dog soup is common during the summer. 13. Kids poke you in the butt for fun(the sh**t needle that’s what they call it or that's what it translates into). 14. You think everything including the song: “YMCA,” and McDonalds originated in Korea. 15. Being good at English is gold and determines your LIFE….it gets you into a better high school, university, job…it follows you almost your whole life. 16. You have Braille sidewalks because your country thinks of every possibility and detail. 17. Wondrous Cherry Blossoms warmly greet you during the beautiful, early months of spring. 18. You work at a Hagwon(private school) and your boss is NOT a principal but a strict businessman. 19. There are delicious “French” bakeries on almost every street. 20. People are afraid of you and are usually timid when asked something in English while in public. 21. You need to be careful when motioning somebody to come here because you could offend them if done in the wrong/American way. To them it is like calling a dog! 22. There are dog farms, yes, I said dog farms for consuming their meat! YUCK! 23. Everything is child friendly, minus the pink light district. 24. Ovens, dryers, and dishwashers are an extremely rare commodity. 25. There are no CHICK-FIL-A's or Nutella or Reece’s ): 26. Mexican food is hard to come by! 27. Kindergarteners are allowed to run wildly free through the hallways of school. 28. Similar to Amsterdam, you have a pink light district in your city. Gross! 29. It sometimes takes 5 hours to move 3 miles while stuck in Seoul traffic and there are fences on both sides, and NO places to stop to use the restroom! 30. After saying you would rather not eat something, you eat the “food” as a cultural responsibility to your host after being prodded many times. 31. You host a party your guests that attend bring you gifts. 32. Every “food” that makes your stomach churn is considered healthy for some reason or other. Example: chicken foot is good for your skin, dog is good for men’s stamina, silk worms are good for your body and skin….yummy, jk! My stomach hurts just thinking about it or imagining the smell…. 33. Space is one of the uncommon things to be found. 34. Your floor is your heater during the winter months. 35. Your stomach hurts you should prick your thumb with a needle. 36. Kimchi heals everything! 37. Being tan or bathing in the sun is thought of as the worst habit possible. 38. You’re 50, you look as though you are 30. 39. Almost every gym is made up equipment from the 1980’s. 40. Your local park has better gym equipment than your actual gym. 41. Every apartment complex has a park. 42. You are not superstitious about the 13th floor, but you are superstitious about the 4th floor because the Chinese character for 4 means death. 43. Everybody has a NICE camera! 44. Most kindergarteners have phones!!!!! 45. While staying at a hotel, instead of receiving a mint on your pillow you receive a condom. 46. While in a hospital, one mention of ice chips or anything cold or icy, they give you the most bizarre look. In addition, hospitals are like a sauna, warm and toasty. Ice is NOT recommended as a remedy for any ailment. 47. If you desire to have an affair, the hotel/motel covers up your license plate so that your spouse does not catch you! 48. Being large or obese is something hardly ever witnessed! Skinny is in a huge part of life! 49. Taking off your shoes at restaurants and when entering houses is commonplace. 50. When you see very LARGE spiders!!! 51. English is used sporadically, incorrectly, and usually misspelled most of the time on signs, brochures, restaurants, menus.... 52. It is okay to buy illegally pirated dvds, cds... and copyright infringement is very popular! 53. FAN death is believed to be a common cause of death. Don’t ever keep your windows or doors closed while having a fan on, because you could DIE!!! lol