Friday, 19 April 2013

It's a bright, bright, sunshiny day!

I woke up this morning right when I wanted (by no means a usual feat!). This was only the start of what so far is a fantastic day. The bus I was on was a spanking clean, new one with colourful arm holds extending from the ceiling. Furthermore, my bus got me into Daepyeong-ri with 20 minutes to spare which gave me time to appreciate the little walk that I have to where I get the school bus. The sun was shining brightly, the air was warm, and for the first time in a long time, I wanted to stop and smell the roses in a dusty town as I wound my way past closed businesses and just opening shops. I had one brief moment where I could actually see a "rose" as I was humming away to I can see clearly now. A little bird flew past me and landed just under a canopy that extended from a shop. Looking up I saw it's nest built into the wall of the building. I realised that I don't often take time to stop and smell the roses, or to look around me and see more clearly that behind the obstacles of the buildings and dust there IS something worthwhile to look at.

This has been a really nice week for me. I have gotten to spend quality time with some of the people I love most here in Korea. Whether they were short walks under the surprisingly warm night sky or long meandering strolls spent in laughter as we took photos of Cherry Blossoms and figured out how to do panoramic action shots, I've really had an amazing time. 
I never was someone who really believed that weather can influence you for good or ill, mainly because I do actually like rain and snow . However, as I look over the events of this week, I understand something that I never really noticed before: as much as I love rain or snow, neither of them really give me the sense of pure joy that sunshine can. My mood has been sunny, I have felt relaxed and I have somehow found time to do all the things I want in an evening that I wasn't able to get to in Winter: I studied, did some preparation for my classes, read, listened to music, walked, hung out with friends, and I spent time just being silly.

I have had some of co-teachers say to me recently,on different occasions, "Oh you look happy today". When they say this I wonder if I look glum all the rest of the time. I rarely feel glum and while I may not spend the whole day rocking a grin, I am actually happy or at least content most of the time.  I have a charmed life here in Korea and I want to show this but no matter how charmed it is, sometimes life is just life. It's boring everyday routines - I wake up, I get ready, I take the bus to school, I prepare for my classes, I teach, I eat, I chat with my coworkers, I teach some more, I prepare some more, I come home. My evenings generally follow a similar routine: I take the bus home, I walk home stopping sometimes at the bank/post office or convenience shop, I decide whether stairs or tunnel, I either prepare dinner or see who's free to eat out, I study, I clean, I watch tv or read, I email or chat to friends and family, I hang out with my friends, I go to bed. Let's be honest, Monday to Friday, my life, generally, is not that exciting. Nevertheless, I do enjoy it...but it is nothing that makes me go around grinning. However, when something happens out of the ordinary that I enjoy whether it is a western style lunch item that I wasn't expecting,  a school trip to Seoul, a package from home, or even just a really nice sunshiny day, the obstacles that prevent my content from showing through have disappeared and only blue skies of happiness are visible. I wish sometimes, that my content would shine through a little more so that my happiness when I have these little "wins" wouldn't overwhelm others!

So, you might think I'm mad to only stop and smell the roses on occasion. You might think I'm mad to be so surprised when my happiness shines through but I am glad that I am like this because by being content most of the time I having cloud free days all the time. When the sun shines so brightly that it removes all obstacles...those days, those days are just the icing on the cake, the bonus to an already great life.

PS This post was inspired by a beautiful, sunshiny morning and a song that can make one happy whether the day is sunny or snowy: I can see clearly now by Johnny Nash.



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