Monday, April 8, 2013

A farewell to home

Today is the big day!  Today is the day that I leave Ottawa for the next 14 months!  Filled with excitement, nerves and the worry that I've forgotten to do something, I've been up since 4am.  After a 5 hour packing session on Friday, I am ready to go, but as always, I have that dreaded "I feel like I forgot..." feeling.  Of course, all of my to do lists items are checked off, but I suppose it's inevitable.  Today, Fabian and I will take trains, planes and automobiles to get us to our first stop on my journey to Korea: Switzerland!  (yes, I'm taking the long way 'round)  Stay tuned for beautiful mountain scenery!

This past weekend was filled with both tears and joy.  In addition to it being my last weekend in Ottawa, it was also my 30th birthday.  Both of these reasons were, of course, enough for celebration, but add on my recent engagement, and you've got yourself a great happy birthday/going away/engagement party!  I am grateful to the 40 or so friends who came out to celebrate with me!  I will miss them all very much!  In particular, I am thankful to my Fabian for helping organize the event, and to my great friends Allison and Chris, without whom the party would not have been as awesome as it was!  A highlight of the night for many was the photo booth that was set up.  Thanks to Allison's seemingly bottomless tickle-trunk, many great moments were captured!  See for yourself:

A night full of laughs, and even a couple "special guests"!

Gangnam style! 

Lucky me, even Psy made an appearance!

With the good, must come the bad, I'm afraid.  I cried many times this weekend while saying goodbye to so many special and important people - my mom and family who came up for a birthday brunch, and my many friends. I know I will see them all again soon, but it's always hard to say goodbye.  Thank God for Skype!  I'm not convinced I would be able to do this adventure without technology.

As I take this next step in my journey, I have thought about some of the things I feel that I will miss.  Obviously my family and friends are at the top of the list, but I realized the other day that I will also miss some of the even more basic things of my life like asking a shop keeper where to find a particular item.  I don't know how to say "where's the toothpaste?" in Korean.  Or sitting in a waiting area and understanding what people around me are saying.  These are the things I both look forward to experiencing and dread all at the same time.  It's a strange feeling.  And of course, the food.  I will miss our food.  Sure, I like bulgogi and bibimbap, but those that know me well, know that when I love a certain dish, I stick with it. Sadly, there will be no midnight poutines in Korea.

I will miss my home here in Ottawa, with its history and culture and small town feel, with big city amenities, but I know I will be back.  In the meantime, I am excitedly looking forward to new views, new places and new experiences!

1 comment:

  1. Have a great time! And I think the technology will make your life a lot easier. Never underestimate the power of a picture or Google Translate converting their words into text(