Monday, March 7, 2016

Kor-Eng: Beauty Is In The Eye of the Beholder // 제 눈에 안경이다

Google beauty standards + Korea and guess what you see, hundreds if not thousands of (white) writers criticizing the Korean beauty standards and the medical procedures that come with it.

Sure I was one of them. All those advertisements about fillers, injectables, weight loss and  various other surgeries got to my head and made me go crazy; and with me many others.

However,  for once let's not point the finger at Korea. Because guess what, Korea is not the only country with high beauty standards. When I went back to the Netherlands I was shocked. Suddenly I got judged by a whole different set of harsh beauty standards. I was too white, wore too much make-up and my fashion sense was weird. I showed to much leg and not enough décolletage.

So white people, don't just criticize that what is foreign to you. Also take a good look at your own culture because it is just as weird as any other.

제 눈에 안경이다

한국의 미의 가준 인터넷으로 찾아봐라 수백 혹은 수천 개의 한국의 미의 가준 비난하는 기사를 찾을 수 있을 것이다.

나도 그런 사람이었다. 서울 살았을 때 성쳥 수술광고를 많이 보았기 때문이다. 그렇지만 다른 나라에도 이상한 미의 기준이 많다.

작년 감깐 네덜란드에 돌아갔을 때 깜짝 놀랬다. 네덜란드 이런 미의 기준이 있는지 처음 알았다. 네덜란드의 미의 기준에서 나는 너무 하앴고, 회장이 짙었고, 패션도 별로였다.

그래서 외국인들아, 너의 눈에 이질적인 것들 을비판 하지 마라. 너의 문화에도 이상한 것 많다.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Kor-Eng: The Never Ending Struggle: 끝이 없다

Hundreds of hours, thousands of dollars, and approximately 5 years of my life I've been trying to master the Korean language. Unfortunately, it seems like a never ending struggle.

I've been stuck at an intermediate level for years now. I know enough Korean to comfortably hang out with people that don't speak English, and I only get a little frustrated if I have to do the more difficult things  such as going to the bank or shooing away the church people that occasionally come knocking on my door. (Though sometimes the mere sight of me is enough.)

However I no longer burst into tears or get social anxiety when thinking about speaking Korean. Sometimes, however, I wish I would, because those are the only things that seem to motivate me to start studying Korean again.

So, please I'm begging you, Korean, don't switch to English to make it easier on me. Ask me difficult, challenging questions about the current political situation. And maybe if necessary - but preferably not - make me cry. Maybe, just maybe I will be able to find my motivation back and improve my louse Korean to the level of a native speaker.

끝이 없다

수많은 시간 걸리고 , 수천 달러를 쓰고, 내 인생의 5년을 희생했지만 한국말 공부하기는 끝이 없는 것 같다.

나의 한국어는 중급이라서 영어 못 하는 사람과 같이 편하게 대화할 술 있다. 하지만, 은행에 갈 때 무슨 말인지 이해 못 할뿐만 아니라 교회인들어 내 집에 오면 오지 마라는 말도 가끔 못 해서 좀 좌절 할 때가 있다

하지만 지금은 한국말로 얘기 해야 되면 눈물을 터뜨리지 안고 불안감도 심하지 않아서 정말 다행이다. 그래도 다시 동기극 부여하고 싶어서 가끔 그렇게 니끼는 것도 좋다.

그래서, 한국사람들, 영어 쓰지 마라. 한국말로 현재의 정국에 대해서 물어봐도 된다. 그것 때문에 나는 눈물 나도 괜찮다. 이렇게 아마 다시 동기를 찾을 수 있고 나의 한국어 실력을 항상 시킬 수 있을 것이다

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Coffeeshop: Cafe Kona Queens, Jongno

Last week on a particularly cold Monday I found myself back in one of my old favorite coffee shops. Even though Kona Queens is a chain store with locations all over Seoul.  It doesn't feel like your typical chainstore. The coffee is actually good, the prices are not ridiculously high and the vibe of the coffeeshop is really cool and quite luxurious.

My option for that day were a croquet monsieur a 4,500 won, and my go to Americano Kona Blend a 3,500 won. But they also have a nice selection of sweet deserts and teas and coffees to choose from.

The main reason why I like this particular location so much though is because it is located next to the cheonggyecheon, the little stream going through the center of Seoul. No matter what whether it is, it's a great place for people watching or just to have a uncommon sight of  some beautiful green trees in the middle of the bustling city.

Check out (only in Korean) for more information about their brewing process and their menu items. 

How to get there:

Go to the right outside Jonggak Station exit 4, Keep going until you see the cheonggyecheon. Then go right again, on the right hand side you will find Café Kona Queens.

지도 크게 보기
2016.1.24 | 지도 크게 보기

Monday, January 25, 2016

Skating in the City: Seoul Plaza Ice Skating Rink

Do you want to do something fun and wintery, but don't want to travel far, or pay a lot of money? I have just the thing for you! Every winter you can find an iceskating rink in front of City Hall in Seoul and it is cheap as dirt.

There is always staff on the ice to make it a safe experience for both beginners and experienced iceskaters. The plaza also offers a training program to teach interested individuals how to skate in a fun and accessible way. If you are interested you must visit (Korean only) to register for a training session in advance.

Opening hours

Sunday to Thursday- 10:00-21:30
Friday to Saturday, national holidays - 10:00-23:00
* Skate time is one hour. Ice cleaning for 30 minutes between each session.

Ice skating rink is open until February 9th, 2016.


Entrance and iceskate rental is only 1,000 Won per hour, gloves are 500 won and helmets are free. Lockers are available as well and are 500 won per day.


The Seoul Plaza Ice Skating Rink is located right outside of exit 5 at City Hall station in Seoul.

지도 크게 보기
2016.1.24 | 지도 크게 보기 ©  NAVER Corp.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Grateful Week 1: In Sickness and in Health.

When sitting at Kona Coffee in Jongno on Monday afternoon it just suddenly hit me. I live an amazing life, but I complain about it more then that I am thankful for it. So, I decided to put a little pink sticky note in the corner of my planner to start keeping track of the things that I should show gratitude for. So here we go; here is the things I am grateful for this week.

  • There have been a couple of people that want to talk to me. They want to share their feelings, their problems specifically with me. It makes me happy that they trust me enough to do this.
  • This week I have also met a few people on snapchat and tumblr who told me I inspire them. I don't think my life is all that special. However, it is great that people are willing to step out of their comfort zone, because I at one time, made the decision to follow my heart.
  • There are always people willing to hang out with me. When I first moved here, I was very lonely and I didn't have a lot of people to hang out it. This is no longer the case and if I want to I can always hang out with somebody.
  • The number of people that care about me. I have been pretty sick this week, and the amount of get well messages I got just warms my heart. It really showed me how great and caring my friends are.
It's a pretty short list for week one, but still very good considering I spend 5 days in bed. Hopefully, next week will be an even better week.


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Fresh new start

2016 has started if with a bang for me this year. I went on a trip to Jeonju, took TOPIK and nailed it (I think), rekindled some friendships, became closer to others, met great new people, and started of as an official student reporter for PyeongChang2018.

Thinking back about the past 25 (ack!) years of my life I have accomplished so much more then I could have ever dreamed of. Yet here I am feeling like I haven't done all that much, I am not all that great, and I stopped believing in myself.

But I should believe! I can actually accomplish what I want because I have already done it! And like  Theodore Roosevelt has said.

Believe you can, and you are halfway there.
 So 2016 is there year where I will believe again. I can do it, even if I face a little hick-up here and there it will be ok. Fake it till you make it, right?

Monday, January 4, 2016

Kor-Eng: Koreas Most Hated Place // 사람들이 싫어하는 장소

There are many places in Korea that I absolutely love, though opinions on those places might vary. On the other hand there is only one place in Korea that I absolutely hate, and every single person that had to step foot inside that place seems to agree with me. This place is Korea's hell on earth - the immigration office.

It's not just he long waiting lines - in one week I spent a good 10 hours at that place. The screaming children or the clerks that only speak Korean also help make the trip out to the office absolutely dreadful.

The fear of the unknown is just as bad. With a terrible website and customer service that fail to mention the right documents that are needed be sure to prepare yourself  for multiple trips to hell.

Just take another number from the ticketing machine until you can heave a sigh of relief and you are holding that precious little card in your hand. Now hold onto it tight because you don't want to lose it and have to go back to hellfire to get a new one.

사람들이 싫어하는 잔소

내가 한국에서 좋아하는 잔소는 많다. 그래서 가장 이움 받는 장소가 하나밖에 없다. 내 생각에 그곳에 발을 들어좋은 사람들이라면 모두 다 나의 의견에 동의 할 것이다. 이것은 한국의 생지옥 출입국 관리사무서이다.

거기에는 기다리는 사람들이 줄을 쓰고 있다. 시끄러운 아이들도 많고 영어 못 하는 출입국 관리관 있기 때문에 가기 싫다. 끔찍한 왭사이트와 고객 서비스 때문에 매번 적합한 서류들을 가지고 가지 못 해서 여러 번 가했다

출입국 관리 사무서에 갈 때 번호표를 뽑고 차례를 기다린다. 드디어 외국인 체재증을 받으면 숨을 내쉴 수 있다 ARC 잃지 마라 지옥의 불 돌아가고