I have been in Korea for about 12 days, and so far I love it. I could definitely go for some cooler weather, but I'm sure that will come soon enough.
I know it's only been a few days, but there is something I am having a hard time adjusting to:
When I go out, people stare at me. Let me clarify: Not everyone does, and I know that not everyone that does is doing it in a mean way. Most of the time I think they are just curious. In fact, it's usually people in the older generations and really young children that I find staring at me.
At one restaurant we went to a toddler turned all the way around in her highchair and stared at me for a good five minutes. At first it was really funny, but then I started to feel like I had two heads. Every time I smiled and waved her eyes just got real big and her mouth dropped open.
Before I moved here I had friends telling me that I should expect this because of my hair and eye color, so I was trying to prepare. I knew this was going to to happen, but I don't think you really know what to expect until you're actually in the situation. And honestly, it's a little disconcerting.
So I have two options to chose from
1. I could let this bother me and take offense
2. Accept that I will, at times, get weird looks and move on with my life
Of course, I am choosing route two. Getting strange looks is going to happen, and maybe some people will talk about me (but I don't know Korean so I really will have no idea). But I really can't let this uncomfortable fact ruin my time here in Korea. What I can do is make sure my actions show that I am not some crazy foreigner with no respect for local customs and practices. I can make sure that when people stare- they will see something positive. I just have to remember that no matter what country I am in- people are going to watch, and that is okay.
So what if at times I am being looked at? Just because I am uncomfortable doesn't mean I can't have a good time. This is the start of a very good adventure. If I was 100% comfortable- it wouldn't be an adventure.
What do you think? Have you ever had a similar experience? What did you do to overcome it?