We go through seasons in life, and sometimes the seasons are so distinct and drastic that things begin to feel like a whirlwind of movement. It;s a little exciting, a little scary but change is a risk that all of us have to take. It enriches our life and helps us grow through it. Officially in a way, it is also a new season for me. I am starting my third year in Korea. I am still amazed about how much more I have to learn and see, I am still busy trying to look back on the past two years and take the time to reflect on it! But needless to say time does not wait for us to catch up with it. It just continues to exist.
A New Home
On the bright side, I have been craaaazy busy lately. I just got back from a 3 week wonderful vacation … Beijing, Taiwan and Boracay. I’ll try to get into details about all those places. So many memories to share with everyone ^_^ More to follow on that.
I started teaching as soon as I got back and while I have been deciding on how to spice up my lessons for my students, I have been simultaneously trying to pack. I move this Saturday to a new place. I am soooo excited, it has big windows, a bigger kitchen and a balcony!
Goals for the new place:
Cooking … simply cooking because the size of my current kitchen compared to the new is astounding.
Decorating! (I didn’t do it really in this one, I have to make it feel like home)
Have people over! (I rarely invited people to my current box)
My Chumpi …
All the changes recently haven’t been good. I’m sad to tell you that my dear hedgehog of two years has passed. It was really tough the first few days, he passed while I was still in the Philippines on Thursday the 16th. Having Chumpi has been an adventure, but I think mostly I realized how having a pet changes someone. It is something you care about, even if they don’t (AND clearly we all he hated me most of the time lol). I cared for the little guy, he drove me crazy sometimes but it was endearing to see such a small creature and having the privileged to take care of it.
In the midst of practicing for the production of A Streetcar Named Desire, I met Nicole who volunteers at KAPS(The Korean Animal Protection Society). They even hold dog walks for the dogs in Daegu. Any who, I had mentioned I would be willing to babysit if need be, I didn’t think I was ready to be a full foster parent yet. It was a passing comment, but lo’ and behold, a few days later there is a dog that needs a home ASAP. A seven-year old yorkie had exceeded the age limit at the shelter and needed to find a home asap or else they would have to put him down. Umm what?! So of course I said yes, an uncertain yes, because of course I had the sudden realization of “Oh crap, I will have a dog living with me”.
Nameless Yorkie appeared at my door….and wait…are you sure it isn’t a Chihuahua? Like the girl who’s never had a dog would know more than the woman who works there. He was groomed and thus looked like a rat. Put off initially by the creepy resemblance, I instantly melted when I finally got to know him within the first minutes he entered my house.
In a span of a few days this is how a dog changed my life:
I never knew I had so much discipline. Whether to exercise (an uncommon fact in my life) or do things on a scheduled basis. Oh future children of mine, you will be fed!
I was willing to actually explore my neighborhood (pics soon to follow), and actually felt like I was in a “real” Korea. I went beyond the new apartment complexes and went behind alleys and small streets that were peppered with traditional houses.
Once a “mother”, I will have no problem wiping my baby’s butt. Yep, that’s right. I had to sometimes wipe. Wow.
It is true that dogs offer unconditional love (you hear that Chumpi??)
I ended up calling him Wesito, a combo of Spanish and Korean. “Weh” is Korean for “Why” and “huesito” is “Little Bone”. This is appropriate because I would find myself asking him “Why?!” all the time. For instance, he would be super excited to see me, he would caress against me like a cat. I would tell him, “Dog, you’re a dog!” in the hopes that he would get it. But to no avail.
Sadly, I had to give him up as soon as the week before the show happened. I was never home and it was just cruel to leave him alone for so long. Chumpi did emotional back flips when he left. He kinda hated him, no surprise there, and I refused to let him out when Wesito was out for fear that Chumpi would hurt him. Yep, I was afraid my 1 pound hedgehog would harm the dog. He’s vicious, as seen in this clip taken a few days after Wesito left. I think he had some pent-up aggression:
An actual thought process that occurred yesterday on my way home from school:
“Hmm what to do now? Maybe I’ll make some of that chicken I bought at Costco. Huh, I need to go buy some more hedgehog food. For that jerk that keeps using me like a chew toy … grrrr….gosh what is his problem?! I have such a crazy hedgehog. … Waaait…What if it’s the Korean’s version of “crazy”….like mentally ill. He used to be so cute and cuddly and now…now he’s just crazy? Oh my God! I have a retarded hedgehog! I adopted a retarded hedgehog!”
*The picture does not relay the pouring rain I was walking through…nor my actual street ^^
The scoop on Chumpi, the fickled-tempered hedge I have that sometimes feels like he owns me rather than the other way around. I love him, he sucks sometimes truly, but other times I just wanna squish him with how cute he is. Examples: