I’m entirely unsure of how to write this final blog post about my eight weeks in Korea, which is probably why I’ve started and restarted this post seven times already. It just seems unnatural to try to sum up so much with so few words, so excuse me if this post is sweepingly general.
Leaving felt…abrupt. Saying goodbye to Seoul and everything it had to offer happened much more quickly than I would have liked but, at the same time, I found myself missing home and school during my final week. I think that one or two more weeks in Seoul without classes would have been perfect, especially considering that many of my friends aren’t leaving for another 10-15 days.
The reality that I was leaving didn’t really hit until I was about halfway through my second movie (“The Perks of Being a Wallflower”) on the flight from Incheon to Chicago. Even after packing, checking out of the dorm, saying goodbye to friends, and going to the airport, I still hadn’t fully registered that I was leaving. Now I’m sitting here at gate F7A in O’Hare after having been put through the customs ringer and having been reprimanded for having a crumpled receipt in my pocket while going through security, much more aware of the fact that I’m going home.
I have also become intensely aware of how much work I have to do once I get home. I have greatly neglected my school obligations (The Hoya and the Phantoms) while away and have a lot of work ahead of me to make up for that. I also leave for school incredibly soon so I have to quickly get over my 13 hour jet lag, get all of my work done, see my friends, spend time with my family, eat all of the food in my house, and pack to go back to Georgetown.
I’m also very aware that the first few people who ask me about my trip are going to get an effusive, long, and enthusiastic retelling of every event, and then each successive person will receive less and less detail. So, if you plan to ask me about my trip and say “how was Korea?”, expect a very general or short response. If you ask me more specific things like “How was the nightlife/sight seeing/people?” I will likely give you a much more detailed answer. Why? Because I’m weird like that. But expect every answer to any question to involve how amazing the food was.
I have now been home for four hours and am so incredibly happy. Since my sister has only recently returned from her year long internship in Africa, it has been a full year since the four of us have all been around our dinner table at home in Albany. Dinner was delicious, loud, and full of laughter. I am incredibly excited to sleep in, see my friends, and relax over this next week to prepare for school.
The end of my trip to Korea does not, however, signify the end of this blog. I hope to keep writing when pertinent topics come up and I will absolutely keep writing when I travel again (which will hopefully be soon).
Thank you to my readers and goodbye to Seoul, to the amazing food, to the stifling humidity, to the experience I’ve craved all of my life.
Goodbye to the friends who became my family, to my incredibly generous relatives, to all of the interesting people I met during my travels.
Hello to the promise of returning, to the recently learned lessons, to all of the adventures that still lay ahead.