My Korean Obsession

Korean blog post









7:00pm (Mon)

Some nights I sink into sleep, fitfully like a child haunted by the dark. The wet cloud of days past hangs over my head but dreams eventually pull me in. When morning comes — yellow and alive — I sometimes throw the sheets over my face and roll over into another blissful dream. But sweet dreams come to an end when the glare of a new day seeps beneath my eyelids and swallows the images that creep across my mind.

I feel like I’ve been in a long wistful dream for the past few weeks. I’ve been floating towards the East, discovering South Korean: the spicy tang of kimchi, the lull of Hangul… I can’t quite explain my fascination with this place and the world it has awakened in me. Blame it on a drama series I discovered while researching TV programming topics for an article I needed to write at work.

I saw an article that mentioned a Korean drama called “My Love from the Stars” which was having an extreme effect on Chinese fans. Viewers were so obsessed with the show that they begged their bosses for a day off to watch the finale; some women dumped their boyfriends because those men were far too inferior when compared to the show’s leading male. Other effects were even more startling.

After reading about the series, I decided to write an article about it so I watched the first couple episodes. I was hooked. I absolutely loved the series. Won’t say anything more though since I’ve already written about it here. A few episodes led to 21, then I was off to watch another series called “The Moon Embraces the Sun”.

Yesterday while at church I really reviewed the past few weeks and determined that I could spend my time much better. I mean, watching a few TV shows isn’t a problem but it’s the balance that I lack. When’s the last time I read a book, or took a long soul-searching walk? When’s the last time I spent some quality time with Greg without going on and on and on about the new Korean word I learned?

Thankfully, I’m now under control. At least for the past three days. I’m participating in an online poetry course from the University of Iowa so that ought to keep me busy. I’m looking forward to six weeks of honing my craft, meeting writers across the globe and developing a habit of daily writing. Since more than 3,000 writers signed up, I’ll be reading enough poetry to keep me busy. Best of all, the course is free! What’s there to lose?

Apart from writing poetry and resisting the urge to watch another K-drama, I’ll be doing some more family history with my grandma. It’s been two months since my last discovery. Grandma promised to show me some funeral programs and we’ll also be searching records online as well as adding more information to our family tree. Hopefully I’ll get to see a picture of my great-grandfather, John Costa, for the first time.

I’m looking forward to a more productive summer. Oh, and did I tell you that my birthday was two weeks ago? Greg cooked a scrumptious curry mutton meal and gave me a jewellery box which he made. We kept it simple – just how I like it.

P.S. I think I’m gonna try to learn Korean, at least basic basic Korean. I don’t think I can do without some aspect of the culture without suffering serious withdrawal symptoms. Just discovered some resources from a language learning site called Memrise. We’ll see how that goes.


18 thoughts on “My Korean Obsession”

  1. nice friendly update about what’s been happening in your life lately…
    wow, how do you find time to do so many things? there must be more hours in the day in ja.

    i spent a few days in seoul in 1997 and although i had a good time and learned a few things about the country, i was a little disappointed, partly because all i knew of s korea was what i saw on tv during 1988 olympics. had i prepared like you are, my experience would probably have been more satisfying.

    if you don’t mind, next time you learn about a free poetry course, let me know. i’d love to participate.
    regards, jhm


    1. I most definitely will! Check out the link for the poetry course. I think it’s still open since my friend signed up last night. The course started last Saturday and the lesson are posted online so you won’t be missing out on anything. The University of Iowa also offers a free prose writing course which will begin later this year. Just check the link in my article to get more details.

      By the way, I still want to know what your experience in China was like. I started watching a few Chinese channels on TV when I was desperate to hear Korean and had no other alternative. Did you enjoy teaching in China?

      As for the number of hours here in Jamaica, it’s the same 🙂 I just always have something new I want to learn and sometimes struggle to find the balance. But yes, life is exciting isn’t it? There always some new opportunity out there if we’ll only look.


      1. thanks, don’t know why i didn’t see your reply ’til now. i’ll send you a link to some of my stuff re china.


  2. I just love your opening paragraph. The online poetry course is going to be harder to keep up with than I thought considering I already forgot all about it. 😦


    1. Thanks Robyn…Well, lesson 2 is already out so you better get going girl! I guess you’ll just have to do your best and see how it goes… By the way are you on break now or what?


      1. Oh, too bad. So when does your rotation end? You need to come to Mobay! And at least watch one Korean series so I’ll have someone to talk with… I’m learning Hangul by the way. It’s fun so far.


      2. In about 9 weeks. I’m coming to Mobay in 6 weeks for the same rotation so I’ll see you then. Lol, Kdramas are a time vortex xD But tell me which one you want me to watch and I will try 🙂

        Hangul is very fun – and much easier to learn when you’re watching the dramas. 🙂


      1. I’m from the Czech Republic, so learning English as the lingua franca was essential! English is very different from Czech, but I believe learning Korean must be much harder.


      2. Oh, I’ve never heard Czech. I’ll have to listen to it on YouTube. But yeah, Korean is pretty challenging. They say it’s one of the most difficult languages for English speakers to learn. And of course it’s best to learn while living in the country but I don’t see that happening anytime soon. I guess though cause I’m interested in the culture it still will be easier for me than other languages. I mean, I studied Spanish in high school for five years and still I can barely introduce myself in Español.lol.


Comments are closed.