Well, now I can say I have, since I purchased the gas stove.
I thought I was going to have to live on street food all month or lentils and rice from the rice cooker Jane gave me. For some reason, my paycheck was short $200 this month, and of course I couldn’t figure out why because my salary statement is all in Korean. All I could think when I realized I’d been shorted was, “Great. Can’t ANYTHING go right for me lately?” I took it to my handler today, she investigated, and it turned out the accountant had thought I hadn’t paid any taxes all year and had decided to take out $200 at a time. After it became an issue, he magically found record of me paying taxes and agreed to reimburse me the $200 IN FEBRUARY.
I told In Kyung sarcastically that I needed to go on a diet anyway. But then I just got angry that I’d have to wait until February and I told her I really wasn’t kidding when I said I couldn’t afford to eat this month, and that I really shouldn’t have to suffer because somebody else made a mistake. So I get a text on the way home that the reimbursement will be in my account in the morning.
Yayy! AND I found my long-lost jewelry I’ve been missing for months. AND I woke up two students today who HADN’T given up and were actually HAPPY I woke them up and saved their butts. AND during the after-test-partying some of those boys who’d been so rotten to me where saying, Sung saeng nim! Please have some! (of their food) and smiling at me.
So on the way home I stopped at a used appliance place and bought a gas stove top for 30,000 won, which was really exciting because they cost 50-60,000 new for the same basic model. The real estate agent Choi, who also calls me Jane like the doorman did, (I guess it’s just habit to call people by the second name they see) arranged for the gas company guy to come right away, and in fifteen minutes I had a working range. (but the hook-up cost another 35,000 won, unfortunately) Mrs. Kim tells Mr. Choi she wants to give me kimchi, and he starts rummaging through my cupboards and drags out the biggest storage container. Choi tells me she was going to bring me a whole lot, but will only bring me little by little because I have no refrigerator. Her little by little could feed me for a month, and she puts it outside my door because I can’t afford a refrigerator next month. So this means I now have to eat mass quantities of kimchi so she doesn’t get offended, especially ’cause she can see the amount I’ve eaten and check on it each day! Mrs. Kim, bless her heart, sees my condiments sitting on the counter and starts repeating their names for me in Korean so I can learn them. I kind of wish I lived upstairs with her, since I’d like to have her around more to teach me and smother me with misplaced motherly attention.
So things are looking up. I just hope I can find a decent job so I don’t have to burst this happy little love fest.
Oh, and guess who one of my students is for my small group conversation class during winter camp? That’s right – Tae-in! I just hope the other student doesn’t leave when she sees who else is in the class…and I hope I can somehow impress upon this Asperger’s Syndrome boy that other people have feelings and to not just blurt out whatever he’s thinking and that his thoughts are more important than everyone else’s…I guess this is my payback for having had nothing challenging or educational in my lessons this past month. But for some reason Tae-in thinks we are best buddies, so I’m also hoping that I can accomplish something with him. I just wish I had some training in psychology or learning disorders.
But yeah, today was a good day. So now I have to go buy some staples I can cook on my gas range that don’t need to be refrigerated! I’ve got to make the expense of the stove and gas hook-up balance out, so must put on some kind of creative hat or else I’ll be tempted to eat out everyday. There are two medium sized supermarkets w/in 500 meters, as well as a small one just 100 meters away.