I’m done.

I’ve never needed a vacation more in my life.

I hate that the food is so salty.

I hate that I can’t understand what people around me are saying.

I hate that I have to depend on other people to do things like: call my landlord, fix my internet, figure out the school’s schedule, know what’s going on, where to find things, make doctor’s appointments, work my heating system which is an awful one at that, or do anything that I would love to be able to do for myself.

I hate that I’m a puppet–more entertainer than teacher.

I hate that they told us not to learn the language before we came because we should speak English in the classroom, but students don’t listen when we speak English anyways because they can’t understand so we have a co-teacher who translates every.single.thing. we say so we’re more or less pointless.

And now since I don’t know the language, I hate that I’m just not as self-sufficient as I’m used to being.  I’m always outside-looking-in.  I’m not as independent.  I thought living in a different country was supposed to be the opposite??

I hate that I’m not an actual teacher.  I’m just a mannequin with blue eyes and blonde hair to stand up there and put on a show and come up with an idea or two and let the co-teacher do everything else.

I hate that my friends live 1-2 hours away, even 3 and 4 hours away, so some exchanges go like the following: “Hey Rachel we’re all going to [cool restaurant] for dinner, you should come!” “ok sweet! i’ll be in there…oh 2 hours. nevermind.”

I hate that I don’t feel constructive at my job.  I feel pointless and like a waste of time and money.

And then my co-workers have to go and be all smiles and good-to-see-yous and how-are-yous and make me feel guilty for hating being in this country.

I know, I know.

“It’s a great experience!”

“You’re halfway done!”

“You have to be happy wherever you are, because location doesn’t matter.”

Here’s the thing: in a couple hours, I’ll probably be back to normal, and all puppies & rainbows & unicorns and crap like that.  I’ve got chocolate in my drawer, ’bout to bust some out.  So no worries, just wanted to be honest for a minute.

The thing is, I’ve been frustrated with all of this almost from the very beginning.  I definitely need some time on a beach to recharge for the next semester.

I just hate feeling like I’m wasting my time.

In other news, I was reading an article about how women are trying risky activities on vacation and dying more now.  The top three most dangerous?

1) Scuba diving

2) Rock climbing

3) Cliff jumping

Well, definitely have the first two on my list-of-things-to-do-next-week, and the third one?  Not exactly, but I do want to try this bit where you free-climb up a cliff and then jump off when you’ve gotten as high as you can go.  So, cliff jumping-ish?


I need some adrenaline!

Edit: A few really cute/sweet 8th graders came into the office to chat about vacation, so I’m feeling a bit better.  Social contact usually perks me up.  But in the conversation I learned if I had planned for vacation 2 days later, I could have had an extra 4 days because of the way the class schedule is.  And that, my friends, is always being the last to know!  At any rate, this time next week, I’ll be on a beach.  Or at least in close proximity to one.

Edit: And then I read things like this, and realize I’m just whining. http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/mcraekate/journal/1

Edit: And now my co-Ts are taking me out. They’re lovely people!


7 responses

  1. Adrenaline, really? It certainly sounds like you don’t need your blood pumping any faster than what it already is at this moment. Your beach plan is probably just the ticket to tranquility. Sitting on the beach sipping a cold brew without a worry in the world can do wonders. Where ya headin’?

  2. Yes, Thailand has some great beers. Cheap, too.
    Many cool things to see in Thailand… I bet you’ll find yourself on more expeditions than previously anticipated. Have fun!
    Also, you are not alone. There’s plenty of us going through some of the same battles sometimes. Hang in there.

  3. Reading your post, paragraph by paragraph, forced my heart into a faster and faster beat until it reached a speed dangerously close to anxiety-inducing flutter. Because… I know exactly how you’re feeling. And I know how taxing this emotional rollercoaster can be.

    A vacation in sunny Thailand halfway to your Korea adventure sounds just wonderful. I’m sure you’ll return with batteries re-charged and a tan that will have your students say, “Tea-chuh! Duh-tea!”

    I know everybody’s experience is as individual as they are. Not surprisingly then, reading your “I just hate feeling like I’m wasting my time” reminded me of mine. And though I shared that sentiment for all 15 months I spent in Seoul and at times it was powerful enough to bring me to my knees, in all honesty now I consider that time spent surrounded by noises that I can’t understand and eating food that is served alongside with a fire extinguisher as the period of my life I learned the most about who I was, and what I wanted (and didn’t want!) in my life. And that I am truly grateful for.

    Have fun on the beach! Any books in particular you plan to read?

    • thanks–yeah, i know it’ll all be grand in the end! i’m taking “what the dog saw” cause i love malcolm gladwell, and then i’m not sure. maybe some jane austen or some defoe or some turgenev. i’m trying to dent the classics 🙂

  4. All the new experiences add up at the end of the year to bring memories that will be with you always. Even the down times will fade away and make the whole picture clearly a valuable asset in your life. The Lord (via Paul) reminds us that wherever we are we should be content….Phil. 4:11b

  5. Pingback: Bits and pieces in pictures and words « rachelshae

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