1) No matter how much you want to lay-in bed for five more minutes (as you live five minutes frm school) it simply isnt worth it. Especially when you have forgotten to iron a shirt.
2) Having Western food once every now and then does not make you unadventurous; I was full of myself for eating everything Korean until my little bus trip (which left me feeling, for want of a better phrase, quite empty.)
Now I realise that your digestive system has some form of muscle-memory and that to deny it things that it is used to (wheatgerm etc) is just asking for trouble. Try new foods, but sometimes we all need the comfort of something familiar.
3) You stand out more than you think. Everytime I ride the subway into town I am struck by how many times I have seen two women board, look for spaces, and realising that the only ones are near me, choose to stand.
I’m not victimising myself, its clearly just one of those things. I dont look dangerous or scary I hope, but some people arent as comfortable being around Westerners as others are. Hey-ho.
4) Always buy the round. Be it iced coffee from the local shop, beer, fruit, your co-teachers are much happier for you to attempt to buy them something after the lunch-cafeteria has been abandoned than for you to buy just for yourself. It may be Confucian, it may be just good manners, but offering everyone a drink is a great way of buiding relations (plus, unless you’re buying for the whole school, it isnt going to break the bank.
5) Allow something to frustrate you, if it frustrates you. Bocking it out isnt really the answer, you’re in a new country and everything is brand new. Some of it is amazingly painless and exciting, some of it is dour and irritating. Take the rough with the smooth and remember how weird your own culture must seem from the outside.
Far too philosophical today, I blame the weather.