Birthday Treats, Candy Corn, and 떡볶이 Jelly {11/05-11/07/2018} NSLI-Y Korean AY

11/05/18 Monday

This is going to be a combined post because I am very behind on my daily blogging and in order to catch up, I have to limit the things I talk about {Though I’ve also forgotten some things, too} Well, anyway, let’s get started.

nov 16

Monday was 서린’s birthday, so Katie and I planned to give her a gift at lunch. We got it prepared over the weekend but put it together when we got to school on Monday morning. We found our locker once again {still need a lock…} and stashed the gift and wrapping in there till we were ready. I bought a penguin stuffed animal for 서린 while Katie contributed 4 nicely wrapped macaroons.

nov 1

Lunch was delicious! So much so that I already started eating before realizing I needed to snap a picture…

Lunch with the girls was fun as always. The others were going to surprise 서린 at dinner so it was just us that wished her a happy birthday with a gift. Though, 지연 came over to me and gave me a plastic bag filled with snacks as a late birthday gift. She even wrote me a cute little note on an instant fish cake soup container. It was really sweet~ She didn’t have to get me anything!


One of the things she bought was 떠볶이 jelly. I wonder if she enjoys them or if she wanted to have me try them because they are so “Korean” if you will. Katie and I tried them at the bus stop while heading to our Korean class. Let’s just say they are very interesting— and yes, actually spicy.

nov 2

When I got to class, I made everyone try one and even walked around the Better World Office offering them out. Watching the reactions of the people eating them was hilarious! They are honestly really bad. Who would eat them?!?

Class was probably okay… don’t remember at all {con of blogging almost 5 days late :/ } But after class, we had our biweekly meeting with 민정쌤 which is always a fun time. Because our classes aren’t in the same building as the other two classes, we often aren’t together as a big group of 16! So it’s nice to see everyone~ We got to meet a new resident director who is joining us and “specializing” {I know it’s not the right word…} in host families. Her name is 소영 I believe and her English name is Soya. She seems really sweet but timid at the same time. At the end of the meeting, I passed around the bag of 떡볶이 jelly to all the unassuming NSLIYians. I finally got to meet someone who enjoyed them: McKenzie

nov 5

After the meeting, I went with Katie to 공덕역 and we studied at a cafe for a bit before having a little picnic under a bridge with convenience store food. We talked a lot and got really personal with each other. I haven’t been able to be that open with someone in a long time. And I told her things that my family and even some close friends don’t know. I just felt that we have gotten so close and she really empathizes with me and understands me.

nov 6

nov 7

I got home after our lovely night of good Korean snacks and deep conversations to talk with my host sisters for a bit while I worked on homework. I went to bed pretty late but hanging out with Katie was worth it. ❤

11/06/18 Tuesday

Tuesday’s morning started off on a good note. I had my English Mentorship period with three second-year students. I gave them each a bag of candy corn so that they could try the most unique American Halloween candy there is. They all pretty much had mediocre reactions and 건우 even said that they were really not that good. They all didn’t seem to be impressed but then they still kept eating them. {Let me add that it was only like 9 in the morning so they even ate it that early while saying “they didn’t like it.” Honestly, some boys will eat anything!} During our period, we played this game called GeoGuesser I think? The website would show you a street view of a random place and you had to figure out where in the world it was by clicking a spot on the map. The closest you were to the location, the more points you win. I was with 호영 and the bet was that the losing team would buy the winning team Peppero since Peppero day was Sunday. Of course, 호영 and I won because of our exceptional geographic skills! Just kidding, we just got lucky. Our first turn, I just told him to pick Washington State cause of the tall trees and we happened to be right. The second time, I could tell the language was close to Spanish so I told him to pick Italy or Portugal {it turned out to be an island of Italy}. The third time we were very off. It was Greece but we picked Ukraine. Lastly, the location was Romania but we cheated because there was actually graffiti on a building that said Romania in Romanian. I’m just excited for Peppero on Tuesday ^^

After school, Katie and I skipped lunch at 하나고 and had waffles nearby Korean classes. Was it the healthiest thing?? Nope, not at all but we wanted waffles.

nov 10

During Korean class, we got our tests back and I didn’t do that bad?!? Like I’m pretty proud of myself! I think I got a high B on the reading portion and a mid-ranged A in writing. We didn’t discuss our OPI scores so that is something for another day it seems~ I didn’t think I did too bad on the test so I’m happy that my intuition wasn’t completely off.

After class, I went home right away. I had dinner with my host family and I stayed at the dinner table longer than normal speaking with my host mom. She gave me some traditional Korean dessert which was rice cake with a sugary filling. It was like a mix of 송편 (Filled rice cake eaten during 추석–Chuseok) and 호떡 (Pancake type pastry with a sweet filling often eaten as street food). I spent the rest of the night working on Korean homework, making a Quizlet {but not working on it} and answering emails.

nov 13

11/07/18 Wednesday

Wednesday was a blur for me… I don’t really remember what I did in school? I studied Korean in 한국사 {my teacher saw me and didn’t say anything so I will continue doing that… he did come up to me though and told me to memorize my example phrases and replace the nouns and words to sound really good.} and I tried very hard not to fall asleep during Economics… it proved to be very difficult. I fell FULLY asleep during the break time. Statistics was a lot of formulas and notations that I did not know so my notes were pretty bad… but during the second half, our teacher talked about college and admissions the entire time so I slept on and off during that.

fall 2

Before lunch, Katie and I were starving so we went to the 매점 and bought some snacks. We sat outside on some benches in front of fall foliage and enjoyed the views {while they lasted… almost all the leaves fell off by the end of the week}. We tried to be artsy and take photos but … I definitely was not photogenic that day. Katie and I ate lunch with our usual group of friends. I passed out a little goody bag filled with candy corn to all of them—excited to see their reaction. Honestly, I can’t stand them but I wanted to see if maybe Koreans would like them. Pretty much all the girls except 지연 didn’t like them. They all tried to pawn them off to Katie. When I asked to take a photo of all the girls, 도윤 started passing out pieces of her candy corn to the other girls so they could hold it in the picture… but we knew the real reason she was doing that! To get rid of her stash!

nov 17

서린 said that it tasted like cookie dough which is what 세림 said too and I highly disagree. I would love them if that was the case!!

After school Wednesday was my first club meeting! I’m in a club called BISERA {I think} and it’s a business and economics club. I really didn’t know what to expect… I was told the meeting time earlier in the day and so I went there after my statistics class. Luckily, I already knew some people in the club. 동철 from 영미문학, 지현 from homeroom, 다연 from 통합사회, and a couple familiar faces that I knew were in some of my classes but I never learned their names or have ever talked to them. We were apparently going to work on presentations during the meeting but because it was the first time I joined them, 주호 {the leader of the club and the one who helped me “pick” my club} said we could just talk and get to each other which is what we did. We talked in a mix of both English and Korean though at times conversing was frustrating because if I didn’t respond right away, they would assume I didn’t understand and start translating in English. Though it is quite annoying, I can see where they are coming from—they just want to make sure I’m comfortable. I’ll just have to improve so they don’t feel like they have to resort to English!!

Some people get it though~ 지현 would only ever speak to me in Korean which was nice {even though her English is amazing!} Our conversations consisted of them trying to get to know me and more about America. I tried speaking in only Korean which made my answers lack in detail… I also don’t really like Kpop or dramas which is what they expect. But we did have fun discussing things nonetheless. I asked 동철 why I see some students standing outside the teachers’ office staring at the wall. It reminded me of speech team members practicing their speeches to the wall, but I knew they were not doing that. He goes on to explain to me that it’s a form of punishment {mostly for eating in the dorms or sleeping in class} from this one teacher. Except, instead of saying punishment, he called it public execution which is definitely not the right word for it but its usage showed me how strongly he feels towards it.

I’m pretty sure everyone in the club is either a first year or a second year which makes me wonder if third years do clubs? Or do they just study because of the 수능 (college entrance exam)? I still have things to learn about this school.

After my club finished up, I met up with Katie quickly to say goodbye. She was staying after school a bit longer to help some classmates with an English project. I went home right away because my resident director host family check-in was scheduled for 6.

nov 18

I was feeling moody and tired today apparently…

At 6 pm, both 민정쌤 and the new host family director 소야쌤 showed up at our door and it was so awkward! I don’t really know why… maybe because I didn’t think these “two worlds” would meet. My host mom made 김밥 while we all talked at the kitchen table. My host brother had a friend over, so the screams of little children filled our awkward silences. The whole conversation was in Korean and she asked my host mom if she had problems with me, if I was respecting the rules, coming home before curfew, etc. They then talked about how I’m studying and my improvement in Korean. They were both complimenting me for how hard I study which was nice to hear~~ {Though I just sat there and smiled awkwardly as they said those things} 민정쌤 brought up my unit test {I forgot to tell my host mom about the results} and my host mom seemed happy to hear that I did pretty well. After my mom forced the two to eat some 김밥, they left and I ate dinner with my host family.

The rest of Wednesday night was spent interviewing Katie for my presentation about an NSLI-Y Student as well as us applying to take over the NSLI-Y Instagram together. Eventually, I had to go to sleep but hadn’t finished my homework just yet. I hoped to have time tomorrow during school to finish it.

That’s all for this blog post~ It is quite long because I combined three days… and there aren’t many photos. Sorry about that! I need to be conscious and try to take more but it’s the routine really…

  • Emma 엠마


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