It’s coming down to the wire. I have exactly 41 days till I ascend into the powdery purgatory in the sky and take flight into the next chapter of my life.
I am leaving Korea for good. I doubt I’ll ever be back. This three-year journey has been filled with incredible travel opportunities (I’ve traveled to more countries per year – about 3-5 – than I ever have before); I’ve gained access to some of the largest travel communities, including black travelers’ networks; and I’ve met passionate travelers who have shown me that sky’s the limit, not only with travel, but with life.
But all that didn’t come without a cost. I suffered a great deal of emotional, mental stress and alienation living in South Korea. I’ve had to adapt to a sub-culture where I was a triple minortiy: a black American 30-something living in Korea among an expat community of 20-somethings. The younger foreigners are inexperienced, a little insecure about the direction of their life, and come here to escape their reality of having to make decisions for the time being. In contrast, I’ve had over 15 years of working professionally, was self-employed as a freelance writer before moving to Korea, I am confident and proud of my life’s accomplishments, and decided to take a career break from the grind to earn some extra cash while living and traveling abroad. To say the least, it’s been a challenge… A challenge I am proud to say I overcame. I learned the valuable lesson that all I ever need is myself.
Thus, with 41 days to go, I’ve been reflective on my time here. Work, however, has been keeping me busy. It’s been nonstop for the last month! I’ve been enjoying creating fun lessons, and soaking up the time I have left with the visiting students at the center.
In just two weeks, I’ll be on vacation for 18 days! Wow! I cannot wait! That leaves six working days, and 7 days in total that I’ll be in Korea for the month of February. Time moves slow yet swiftly. I bought boxes to ship some things home, and I’ve been making plans with friends for these last couple of weeks. It’s all very exciting.
But (deep breath), there’s just one thing my mind has been avoiding, and I’m not sure how to do this successfully: Where will I live once I’m back home?
I talk about my options in this video:
Do you have any advice? Have you been here before?
Help a sista out!