Hi there! I’m in Korea right now. I am not supposed to be sitting here and blog tonight but here I’m.
I just realised I haven’t been updating my blog for like almost two years? Maintaining a blog is easier said than done!
Let me give you a quick update on my life for the past two years. (it is mostly for my own record. When I grow old Ima come back and read this!) I’m a person who’s always hungry for some changes – which leads to the fact that I am always on-the-go, wanting to meet new people and when I finally get bored of a city I move on.
I quit my job, left Thailand in March 2015 and moved to Korea in April for the purpose of learning the language. Time flies and it has already been 10 months – clearly it is far from enough to master a language, but I was able to pick up the foundation and communicate with the locals without huge problems by starting from zero 10 months ago (of course there are slip-ups, quite a lot I’d say?). On the side note I didn’t plan to stay for 10 months even, it was supposed to be a 10-week short trip to immerse into a whole new culture, learn the basics of a language and recharge myself.. then turned out by the end of the third month I decided to stay a little longer because I didn’t want to be jack of all trades but master of none. Not anymore.
Since I entered my 20s I started to develop an interest in language learning – I was told by a lot that it would be a bit late but nothing could really stop me from it. I do regret the fact that I didn’t buried myself in learning English nor had I pay any attention in class back in secondary school. however as soon as I went abroad for my undergrad it came to my realisation that I should have learned a foreign language when I was young. I certainly have lost the competitive advantage compare with children at young age but that doesn’t mean there is no hope for adults to acquire a new language and master it to a certain degree. Take English for an example, as a Hong konger I was exposed to the English language on a daily basis, not through conversations since I went to a local school, but our text books which were written in English and the bilingual physical environments like road signs and public announcements. Thanks to that even tho I was never paying attention in class I did at least had the concept in mind of how English works – to some degree. There were phrases that I accidentally heard in class when I was young and I still remember them as of today. In the contrary, in recent years when I come across new English vocabularies and phrases it doesn’t go into my head as easy as it used to be! per se learning English is still at the top of my bucket list.
Going back to the Korean language learning journey here in Seoul… I am currently doing level 4 out of 6 (with 6 being the highest)-At the beginning I was very determined and motivated – but 10 months has passed and I’ve lost my motivation and tenaciousness. I came to a conclusion that it has to do with the slow down of my learning curve in the active part of the language (writing and speaking) while I am fully enjoying the passive part of learning (reading and listening). I call it an imbalance of the two functions and esp when I get writer stuck or stuck in words while speaking. That has become one of the reasons why I decided to take a break from learning it after finishing the intermediate course because I don’t think I will make any progress by taking classes every day, at least for now. (Instead I have enrolled in a part time course in Hong Kong – to make sure I keep practising the language! I don’t easily give up after all, just finding ways to solve problem)
The teaching system at Kyung Hee University (the school that I enrolled at) is great, the text books were well written, teachers are very qualified. Esp when it comes to grammatical skills, hands down to this school because we learn about 65-70 new grammars every 10 weeks haha. That sounds overwhelming but I was told by my friends how impressed they are with my grammatical expressions on kakaotalk. To be fair I have to say this school certainly puts less focus on speaking – which a lot of caucasian learners don’t fancy because it is an environment more suitable for passive learners and thus I also heard comments about how students straight out of Kyung Hee generally aren’t good speakers. Anyhow, I did enjoy my 10 months here and I’ve no regrets. I traveled, I’ve made friends and I had fun learning the language just like trudging up the hill. I am gonna have to write some blogs about the school before i forget.
As for now it is time to turn my computer off and do some work!