Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Mixed Emotions

I'm having what we expats tend to call an "I hate Korea day."

But, it's a little more complicated than that.

Sure, I'm angry.  So angry that it feels more like helplessness than actual rage.  I'm angry at Yoon's for taking advantage of us.  I'm angry for the potential money we lost.  I'm angry for the time and effort spent on a fruitless project.  But, most of all, I'm angry at what this experience has done to my outlook on life.  I don't trust people to have the best intentions.  And I certainly don't give them the benefit of the doubt.

Though I've always considered myself more of a realist than an optimist, I think my youth and inexperience gave me the kind of naive happiness that my generation is known for.  I believe this year was the final straw on that proverbial camel's back.

On top of all this, I have conflicting feelings about leaving Korea and even our trip.  

I'm not a quitter and Yoon's is robbing me of the opportunity to finish what I started.

I can't wait to go home, but I'm terrified of the prospect of not finding a job.  I can definitely see why many people stay abroad, hopping from one country to the next teaching English rather than facing the market back home.

I'm excited for our trip, but I'm so tired and stressed that I find myself sometimes wishing that we were going straight home.

It's all a bit much, really.  I just keep saying, "I look forward to looking back."


  1. "Looking forward to looking back"...what a great way to put it. I am so heart-sick for the both of you. Even though Julia has been an ugly twit since the beginning, in spite of that I was sure that this would still be a wonderful experience for the both of you. I've never been so sorry to be wrong about something.

    I am proud of both of you for the way you're handling the situation. I think I'd be looking for someone named Guido to break their legs.

  2. I too am so sorry this was not the experience you hoped you would have. I was so excited for you both to be going to a new and foreign land not only to see what a different culture was like, but to actually eat, sleep, and breath it. It is too bad that the company you landed with was Yoon's, because I think your feelings about Korea are largely based on that experience, and rightfully so, how could it not be. It breaks my heart that it ended up being this way for you both.

    Try to look forward to your trips and embrace the experiences you find there. Just possibly it will lead you on your next path, or give you insight on what that path might be.

    I do not want to be a cliche, but try to put this in perspective and take from this experience more positive than negative. You will feel better and it won't taint the wonderful people you both are.

  3. Well, it's for sure a horrible feeling to get fired and screwed over. It would have been a lot better if it had been an all-around good experience. I still get mad when I think about companies that screwed me over 20 years ago. But... don't be like me, and try to just look forward. If you stay mad, the terrorists win.

    I predict you'll both feel a lot better 1 hour after you're outta there.