Saturday, May 30, 2009

"I didn't know if you'd make it"

Friday after the funeral, I napped and then left home again for a girls' night out - Sarah and two of her friends. Yesterday, I had lunch with my mom's friend (who then bought me enormous amounts of seaweed), came home to nap, and later Sarah came over. After Sarah and I had eaten, she went across the hall (to a friend's apt) to study while I wove. Once I finished my necklace, I went over and we talked for a long time before I came back and then talked to Ben for a long time. I'm on a dreadful 3am - 9/10am sleep schedule. This has been going on for a week straight and I'm slightly horrified, yet it continues. Ben is amused by how much time I am spending with Sarah, whom I only met just less than two weeks ago, and made a comment about how quickly I fall in love with people. But when you know, you know.

I find that near the ends of things, people appear. Sarah leaves Korea in two weeks. I leave in about a month and change. I keep meeting people lately that make me wonder why I haven't met them earlier. But I guess it's just like how it took me so long to find my hanji teacher; this is how the journey goes. I watched a Carl Honore talk about slowness (of course, while frantically spinning hanji) and was reminded by what my hanji teacher said last week: "it's a good thing we didn't meet right away." Because there was merit in my stumbling all over the country to find a teacher, in being rejected and denied, in learning all the other things you get to learn on the rocky road. He might have turned me away; I might not have been ready to be his student.

Yesterday, my mom's friend said that she was impressed by how many friends I've made here and how well I've done - she had met me when I first arrived last summer and had wondered to herself if I'd survive Korea. When I was near the end of my three years in Chicago, Breda wrote me to say, "you did it! You moved to a new city and are a total success!" [my paraphrase], which gave me major pause at the time, b/c I had been so busy just plowing through that I never noticed. But last night, Sarah and I talked about how thankful we are that we are flexible and adaptable enough to travel like this and get an experience of Korea that isn't the watered-down tourist version.

I am also thankful to have a friend that I can eat a lot with and loves seaweed as much as I do.

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