Happy Friday!

23 Jul IMG_7359

What are you guys up to this weekend? A magazine that I volunteer for is throwing a volunteer appreciation party at a new upscale restaurant in Daegu. We’re looking forward to good company, free drinks and all the finger foods.:)

This post is the first in a new little series that I plan on sharing on Friday to send you into the weekend, a short list of fun or thought-provoking tidbits that made my week a little more interesting. Here we go! Continue reading

Can you identify these 8 objects commonly found in Korea?

22 Jul ©2016 Bridgett Hernandez

When my mother-in-law visited us in South Korea earlier this year, she would wake up early every morning and spend some time on our rooftop where she had a bird’s eye view of our block. By the time I woke up, she had a mental list of questions ready to ask me over coffee such as “Why do some of your neighbors have water tanks on their roofs?” and “What does it mean if a taxi has a red light on it?”

I was only able to answer about one out of five of her questions; the rest I could only guess or I’d never really thought about. But her curiosity brought back memories of my first days in Korea when everything was new and the mundane was a surprise. Some things seemed to make much more sense (like energy-saving motion sensors that trigger escalators to move only when people are present) while other things boggled my mind (like not being able to flush toilet paper down the, ahem, toilet).

One of the greatest things about traveling is noticing all the little things the locals take for granted. These everyday objects can actually tell us a lot about a country’s way of life. Here are 8 objects commonly found in Korea. Take the quiz to see how many you can identify then scroll down for the answers. Let’s begin! Continue reading

Korean Food Culture: Ramen

20 Jul ©2016 Bridgett Hernandez

Hey there! How’s your week going? I’m trying to savor my last day off for a while and get some blogging in. Summer “camp” classes start tomorrow at my English hagwon. I’ve been trying to think of some interesting activities since I’m going to be seeing the same kids six days a week for the next month.

I recently did a just-for-fun activity with my middle school classes to reward them for good participation. I told them to think about the supermarket across the street from our hagwon. “Okay,” I asked, “How many kinds of ramen do you think they sell? I’ll buy a cup of instant ramen for whoever can guess the closest.”

When I had finished writing down each student’s guess, they asked me, “So how many are there?” I had no idea. After work, I walked over to the supermarket to count. I knew the number had to be pretty high, but I was still surprised: Continue reading

From Canada to South Korea: Becoming a Mom Abroad

20 Jul ©2016 Bridgett Hernandez

I recently caught up with my friend Nellana over some Mexican food to talk about what it has been like to become a mom in South Korea. Nellana is from Nova Scotia, Canada. She came to South Korea seven years ago to teach English.

“One year turned into two years and then three years and basically I made this my home.”

She met her Korean husband four years ago while they were teaching at the same school. Their daughter, Gracie, just turned one. Read on to find out what Koreans think about breastfeeding in public and why they don’t do baby showers. Continue reading

My stint in a Korean hospital

18 Jun IMG_20160610_181236

So there I was. In a Korean hospital bed in a Korean hospital room, the television set to a Korean drama which happened to be in the middle of an obligatory hospital scene.

Last week I was admitted to the hospital (for the first time in my life) for emergency gallbladder surgery. I’m okay now! On Monday I’ll be returning to work. I just wanted to share a few notes on my experience. Read on to learn about South Korea’s efficient, “no frills” approach to healthcare and the cultural hang-ups of being a patient in a foreign country. Continue reading

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