April 2015 marks my two year anniversary of being back in Korea. As I embark on my third and final year I find myself in a state of reflection more often than not. When good things happen, I worry I will miss all the little blessings I’ve been given here. When bad things happen, I shrug and think it won’t be long till those bad things are a fading memory.
During some recent reminiscing, I came across something I wrote in my note book while waiting to take off from Pearson Airport in Toronto. I must’ve been high on the adrenalin of this new journey because it’s just bursting with opportunity at every paragraph. It made me laugh to see myself put back in that place two yeas ago. Back in that seat, back on that plane, feeling thick with adventure. I thought I’d share this time capsule with you for your amusement.
April 1st, 2013
Things are looking up and I’m still on the ground at Pearson airport. After a tearful goodbye with my Pops, I collect myself and get sorted. I can do this. In fact, I already did this – 8 years ago, so get your shit together Vezina! This is old news. Ok I’m cool, let’s roll.
The good luck begins while checking in at the ticket counter.
“Are you traveling with someone?” The airline agent asks. “You booked yourself a middle seat.”
“No,” I reply. “It was given to me at random. May I have an isle seat?”
“Yes,” she says. Nice score. For a 13 hour flight straight from Toronto to Korea, this is invaluable good fortune. Check in: complete.
Next step: bathroom. I probably look like a psycho after that emotional farewell.
Need to put my game face on. I might meet the love of my life on this flight! Must be ready.
Update: I have entered the plane. I see my row, one cute Korean guy sitting at the one end of my row of three. I’m at the other end, just have to walk around to the back of the plane and come back down the isle. I don’t have the guts to clamber over this young man with all my stuff and straddle his kneecaps before even learning his name.
So around I go.
In my seat, I start unpacking my books and notice the soft music playing overhead. No joke, it’s “All By Myself” by a wailing Celine Dion. I almost snort with laughter but manage to control myself. Is this really my life right now? One of the saddest songs ever known to man is playing as we embark on an ungodly long flight, most of us landing indeed alone, halfway around the globe.
Excellent pre-flight playlist Korean Air.
All irony aside, I’m wondering who will be the third person to complete our center row. I overhear the cute guy on the left end asking the attendant if the center seat is free and the attendant says yes. Another score!
Cute Guy and I look at each other and smile. We both know the value of a spare seat for storage and personal space on such a long flight. He knows me so well already. This might be love.
So there you have it folks. I’m not proud of that shameless optimism but it was all over me that day, like a film to be scraped off in the years to come. Seriously though, I have come a long way in my two years here in Korea and I’m happy to say I’m still enjoying myself as my third year begins. I’ve accomplished all the goals I’ve set out to make in my first two years so this year is like a victory lap. Now is the time to celebrate the present, let go of the past and plan for the future. Cheers to you Dear Readers for being with me on this journey! Karli in Korea has banked over 75 posts since its inception and has helped to waste countless company hours around the world. Here’s to many more!