Monday morning, Christmas Eve, I woke up to snow!! It actually didn’t melt right away and stuck to the ground… Only a few millimeters, but snow nonetheless! And these few millimeters were enough to make people not want to drive (so the buses were packed), back up traffic pretty bad, and make people insist on putting chains on their tires. (Toto, I don’t think we’re in Wisconsin anymore.) I normally get to school at 8:20 am, but because of the traffic, I didn’t walk into school until 8:55 am. (Classes start at 9 am.) As I was walking to the school (and yes, I had to work at school on Christmas Eve- haha), I heard what sounded like a giant mob of kids! When I came into the view of the school, there was snow covering the whole school grounds and kids were out in full force throwing snowballs and making snowmen. I even saw some kids building snowmen with 3 balls instead the normal Korean snowman with only 2 balls… I taught them that! Then I got nailed in the head with a snowball by one of the 6th grade boys… Someone needs to teach them snowball fight etiquette!
Christmas Eve night, I wrapped Karima’s gift, made chocolate chip cookies (and left some out for Santa!), and got the house ready for Christmas morning!
I started off Christmas morning at 4:30 am to Skype with everyone at my grandma’s! It was so nice seeing and talking to everyone! My little girl cousins told me they miss me a lot! 🙂 Then I watched Home Alone until 7:00 am when I got to talk to Mama, Papa, and Dillon out in Colorado! We got to “open” presents together! They got me some yummy snacks, Yahtzee, a Christmas puzzle, gift cards, an awesome boxing reindeer pen, and a card! So happy!! I also got to Skype with Aunt Sue and Uncle Dean!
After a mid-morning nap, Karima and I opened presents from each other and then made a yummy Christmas breakfast! Pancakes (Mama’s recipe!), bacon, and scrambled eggs! YUM!
Then I met Sarah to go sledding up on the mountain! There were so many people there, you had to be really careful not to run over anyone. I fell off the sled a few times going down, but it was a lot of fun! We also found a little abandoned snowman, so Sarah got some supplies and gave it life!
Later on, Karima and I headed down to Sarah’s for Christmas dinner with some of her student, Becca, Harris, and Raynell! It was great! Becca, some girls, and I put together the Christmas puzzle I got from Mama, Papa, and Dillon! Then we played some Yahtzee! Another lovely contribution from some lovely people out in Colorado! The kids LOVED it!! So much fun. Dinner was delicious! Sarah made some chicken breasts and some potatoes with beef stock! Karima made a carrot, onion, corn, and garlic dish! I brought some chocolate chip cookies, that were a hit! There were also some Christmas cakes! Cakes here always come with candles, regardless of the occasion or type of cake, so we lit up the candles and sang “Merry Christmas to You” in the tune of “Happy Birthday to You!”
That night, I Skyped with Dad and Jessica! They got to open their presents from me, but their present to me is still en route to Korea. My dad told me he snuck a surprise in there and had an evil laugh to go along with it. Haha Jessica had no idea what it was… I can’t wait to see what kind of shenanigans he’s up to! I talked with them for an hour and 20 minutes!!!
What an AMAZING-SUPER-AWESOME-FANTASTIC-SPECTACULAR Christmas it has been!!! I ended the day falling asleep to A Muppet’s Christmas Carol!
In yoga, we always do a back bend pose. I was super excited when I could actually get it, but then there was holding it for as long as the instructor said to, which can be difficult because your wrists get sore very quickly. If you hold it for long enough, she’ll come around and pull you up with a yoga strap. December 26, 2012 marked that special moment!! I did it!! Ahhhh!! So great!! (By the way, there are only a few people in the class that hold the pose long enough for this to happen… I am now apart of this elite group!) 🙂
Saturday, I was hoping to bring my co-teachers daughter’s sledding up on the mountain. A friend of mine went up on the mountain earlier that morning to go sledding and reported back to us that there is not enough snow to go sledding. Grass is poking through everywhere. Bummer! So instead, Karima, Tyler, Adam, and I went out to Bomokdong to climb the little oreum there. We enjoyed the view from the top over some hot chocolate and played on the outdoor gym equipment. After we climbed back down, we went to Two Weeks Cafe. Cute little place! We had coffee and lemonade on the outdoor upper deck. (Yes, we were sitting outside, just wearing our sweatshirts, enjoying the weather at the end of December… Be jealous Wisconsin!) There is this little old couple that runs the cafe and they speak English pretty well. The old man was cute… He would use little phrases like “Catch ya later!”
After a nice, long bus ride out to the beginning of Olle 2, I started my journey at 10:45 am. The first 15 minutes SUCKED! It was snowing/sleeting and very windy and cold and of course going the opposite way that I’m walking. It was rather miserable, to the point that I was really considering turning back and heading back to Seogwipo… I pushed on. It got 10x better once I got in a little wooded area and the wind was blocked!
I climbed up a couple of oreums. When I got to the top of the 2nd one, the trail went around a little crater and then past an outdoor gym. Near the outdoor gym, there was a little wooden platform you could go on to get a view of everything below. I wasn’t going to go up there because I just wanted to get out of this weather as soon as I could. At the last minute, I decided to just take a looksie… So glad I did! The view seriously took my breath away and was the best part of Olle 2! From here you could see Udo Island, Seongsan Ilchulbong (Sunrise Peak), and the little islet that the new aquarium is on. Wow! I finished the 18.1 km trail at 1:55 pm.