Monday, 25 March 2013

A Slightly New Layout

I've changed the layout of my blog just a little bit...adding a few tabs up the top, and taking away a few widgets that didn't seem to add much to the overall blog.  I've also merged my two blogs together, so now everything's all in one place, right here.

The 'Home' tab will take you to the most recent post on the blog.

The 'Who Am I?' tab is fairly self-explanatory I think.

The '91 Things' tab is a work in progress, and you'll just have to wait a while to learn more!

The tab called 'A List' is, surprisingly, a list!  It's going to be an on-going post, I hope, detailing the whacky gifts I receive from my students over the course of the semester.

And finally,  the Blogroll tab, although a work in progress, shows a list of other blogs I follow as well as other sites that I find interesting for multiple different reasons.

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

It's been a while!

August 12th, 2012??!  I knew it'd been a while since I last posted anything, but I didn't think it had been that long!

I suppose a brief synopsis of what's been going on since then is what's called for....

I did get Laser Eye Surgery. LASEK to be exact.  It was massively painful at the time but I can see perfectly now, and have been able to for months and I'm told my eyes are in excellent health.  Success.  Money very well spent.  Delighted.

The last shot of me wearing glasses! T minus 30mins to surgery!

Post surgery! Trying to put on a brave face and pretend it didn't hurt too much!

Next, winter came to Daejeon but not before Nick entered a Chinese Dragon Boat race on the local stretch of river and won, I went to Seoul for a Hen Party, and we both went to Busan for a wedding.  When it did come though, winter came in a suit, ready for business.  Temperatures plummeted and the lovely warm weather of Autumn quickly became a thing of the past BUT I can't say we minded too much because at this stage we, Nick and I, were on the count down to Christmas at home!

Nick, the rest of the team, and 1,000,000 won prize money!

Snowy walk to work

Outside our old apartment in Wolpyeong

Finished work on Friday evening and came outside to this!

The local park of an afternoon!
We headed off from Daejeon on the 22nd of December, clad in matching Christmas outfits (which blended in nicely in Korea, not so nicely in London or Dublin!), leaving our apartment and our jobs to two of our friends to take over.  This made the packing process somewhat easier, knowing that anything we wanted to leave behind would be safe in our now old, apartment, awaiting our return!  After something awful like 36hrs on the move, we landed in Dublin, where it was 30degrees warmer than it had been in Seoul!  From -15 to +15 just like that!

Incheon Airport wearing matching Christmas couple outfits, and under Steff Hotdog to boot!

There really is nowhere like home, and no more so than at Christmas time.  It absolutely flew by and now seems like a distant memory, dominated by oodles of rich food and washed down with plenty of festive gargle.  Great fun altogether but it really highlighted the badness of our diets back home.  Food that was too rich, too processed or too sugary when I first got home soon became normal again, not that it stopped me from wolfing it all down and having a grand ol time for myself!

The over-eating induced lull after Christmas Dinner!
I spent a total of 9 weeks at home, and nick was there for 10.  In that time, we went to a friend's wedding in Roscommon, we visited relations and friends in the west of Ireland, we acted as beaters on a woodcock shoot, we ate a very fancy dinner post-shoot in Markree Castle, and we caught up with as many friends and family as possible.  At the same time, I was on the look out for a job back in Korea, starting about the 1st of March, and Nick was furiously studying for the Oral Defence of his Ph.D.

Kathy & Kev's Wedding on New Years Eve in Roscommon

Family Fun in Kilmuckridge. All ten adults and 5 children worth of us!

Stunning, bleak, Connemara scenery

The woodcock shoot we were beaters on.  Gas day out! Unfortunately there wasn't enough tweed to go around! 

Very fancy post-shoot dinner at Markree Castle

After much job hunting, and much study, we were both successful!  I got a job and Nick got his Ph.D! Delighted, the pair of us were!

Week three in my new job is almost drawing to a close now.  I'm teaching conversational English to college students in Hyejeon College, just outside of Hongseong in Chungcheongnam.  It's a small enough college about an hour outside of Daejeon, tucked away in a quiet little mountain town.  The college has provided me with a nice apartment just off the campus, as well as a huge office on campus, next to my classroom.  They did however mis-spell my name as 'Step' on the door of my office which means I'm probably going to be Step from here on in!  However, I only work a trying 14hours a week, and I have every Friday off.  Each of the two terms in the college year are 16 weeks long,  and the rest is holidays, paid holidays at that. 

Hard to make out but this is my office door and it says 'Step Ruth Russell'!

'Knock knock, open wide, let's see what's on the other side'!

The view over campus from my office window!

The last few weeks I've been wandering around, pinching myself, wondering how in god's name I ended up here, with this ridiculous job, where I have tonnes of free time, loads of holidays and all the while earning a salary decent enough that I can put some money away for a rainy day!

And that folks, in a nutshell, is it. The past 7 months, crammed into one little blog post!