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Friday, October 30, 2009

I don't want to grow up


How do you know when you're grown up?

Often, my students in Korea would ask, "Teacher, how old are you?" After asking how old they thought I was -- the answers ranged from 16 to 100 -- I told them I was 23 and asked if that was old. Sometimes, they said yes. More often, they quickly replied, "Oh no, teacher, young. Eonni." ("older sister")

Good, because I don't feel old. Most of the time, I don't even feel like an adult.

There are plenty of times I wonder what to do with my life. Somewhere along the way, I veered from the traditional path (high school-college-career) and made the choice to spend the first two years out of college traveling. While my year in Korea was spent working full-time, it's generally been a pretty relaxing, easy time.

It's a decision I don't regret, especially when my upcoming calendar includes trips to Costa Rica, Australia and New Zealand (and maybe Spain), all the while making a little money on the side working part time from home.

It's a pretty sweet deal to work in sweatpants, no makeup and sitting on the couch.

At the same time, I'm also looking forward to that point next summer when I settle down and find a proper job. It will be nice to finally have somewhere permanent to call home that is mine and a job that is hopefully more career-specific than anything I've had in the past.

Now it's just a matter of deciding what to do with the rest of my life beyond, say, June.

That said, there's salmon marinating in the fridge and a bottle of wine (attached to a good friend) coming over for dinner. Maybe there's something to be said for 23 being an adult... or at least getting there.

How old is "grown up?"

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