In case you were worried that all this bittersweet nostalgia was getting to be too much, I’ve got some of the dirty underbelly of reality for you. It’s important we maintain perspective and keep things balanced here. So here are a few things that I shall not miss in the least. At least there are more things I will miss than things that I won’t.
And the soot and grime that comes with it.
Ask most ex-pats living in Seoul, and this will be number one on their list. It is number one on mine. I was fairly immune to it my first year, but after someone walks into you WHILE STARING DIRECTLY AT YOU for the five thousandth time, it starts to get annoying. I will include here other wonders of Korean physics here such as people walking onto elevators and subways before anyone else gets off, infrequency of door holding, cutting in line and stopping dead in one’s tracks at the top of escalators or stairways. I’ve taken to a lot of loud grunting and hissing and clearing of the throat to passive aggressively combat this ubiquitous phenomenon.
It is loud, it is commonplace and it is disgusting.
I am sure there are smellier places on earth, but I won’t be longing for the overwhelming aroma of roasting squid, boiled silkworm larvae, raw sewage bathrooms, garlic sweat, soju breath, or eau de barbequed meat anytime soon.
$19 mediocre-at-best wine, $22 pure maple syrup, $8 avocadoes, $13 cheddar cheese, and $18 all natural peanut butter. Eating only Korean is fun for awhile, but I promise you that one day you wake up and you just want eggs benedict without spending $25 for it. Let’s not discuss how much my hair products cost here.
I realize that I’m making a lateral move here when it comes to music and am preparing myself for Death by J-Pop. But Japan at least has a bit more variety in their musical tastes, has a great love of indie rock and has historically produced some very interesting stuff of its own. I will not miss GirlsGenerationBigBangWondergirlsSuperJunior blasting from every corner one single bit. And I would be eternally grateful if I never had to hear this song again.