About

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Welcome! I’m Monica, originally from the U.S., now living in South Korea with my husband Junkyu and our cat, Penny.

I first had an interest in Asian culture in high school, when I began watching dramas and listening to all kinds of Asian pop music. The summer before my senior year in high school, I went to Japan with a program called AFS to live with a host family and learn Japanese. I loved it so much, that I went back a year later with our sister city for two weeks, and then went to college with the intention of majoring in Japanese.

I had to transfer schools to find the right program for me, but it allowed me to study abroad for a year in Kyoto, Japan at Ritsumeikan University. I mostly studied Japanese, but I also took Korean and thought about studying abroad there until I decided to graduate early.

After graduation, I went back to Japan on the JET Program and lived in Fukuoka Prefecture for two years. Towards the end of my first year, I met my husband Junkyu on a train ride to Nagasaki. He sat down next to me and we started talking, and the rest is history (which you can read about here and here). We were long distance for a year before he proposed, and after my contract in Japan ended, I moved to Korea. Since then, we’ve taken pre-wedding photos, gotten married in a traditional Korean ceremony, and adopted a cat!

I started my blog as a way to write down my feelings about living abroad, and because I had a lot of free time at my desk in Japan. Now, I love sharing stories about love, life, books, and all the things in between.

I love reading your comments, so don’t be shy to leave me a note, and follow me on all the things!

Note: All of the pictures on this site are my property, unless otherwise stated. Do not take them without my permission.

17 thoughts on “About

  1. Thanks for following me! I love the design of your blog – it’s really pretty! 🙂 Teaching English is something that I think about doing. I’m graduating college in a couple of months (Linguistics) and I want to pursue an academic career, but I often wonder about taking a break to teach English and travel. Have you found it easy adapting to life away from your home country?

    1. Ah thank you! Well adapting is different for everyone. I think my expectations were high because I lived in Japan as a student, but being a teacher in a new place, even in a country I’d lived in before multiple times, is really a crazy ride. I should have expected less from my school and my experience because now that I know my routine I am a lot happier but I got frustrated that I wasn’t really DOING much when I thought my background would help me more. It really depends on you and where you teach. Everyone is different but honestly go at it with an open mind and you will do fine ^^

  2. Thanks for following me! I love the design of your blog – it’s really pretty! 🙂 Teaching English is something that I think about doing. I’m graduating college in a couple of months (Linguistics) and I want to pursue an academic career, but I often wonder about taking a break to teach English and travel. Have you found it easy adapting to life away from your home country?

    1. Ah thank you! Well adapting is different for everyone. I think my expectations were high because I lived in Japan as a student, but being a teacher in a new place, even in a country I’d lived in before multiple times, is really a crazy ride. I should have expected less from my school and my experience because now that I know my routine I am a lot happier but I got frustrated that I wasn’t really DOING much when I thought my background would help me more. It really depends on you and where you teach. Everyone is different but honestly go at it with an open mind and you will do fine ^^

  3. I’m so glad I found your blog 🙂 I’m having a great time reading all your posts! Thanks for following me back, I’m looking forward to reading more (especially as lately I am trying to learn Korean and I have always wanted to learn Japanese.. and often wondered about learning them side-by-side).

    1. Ah I’m so glad to hear that! Definitely ask if you have any language questions! I should do a post about learning both languages at the same time haha. I started with Japanese but in college I took both Japanese and Korean at one point, so it was interesting to see where they overlap. I wish you luck in your studies!

  4. I’m so glad I found your blog 🙂 I’m having a great time reading all your posts! Thanks for following me back, I’m looking forward to reading more (especially as lately I am trying to learn Korean and I have always wanted to learn Japanese.. and often wondered about learning them side-by-side).

    1. Ah I’m so glad to hear that! Definitely ask if you have any language questions! I should do a post about learning both languages at the same time haha. I started with Japanese but in college I took both Japanese and Korean at one point, so it was interesting to see where they overlap. I wish you luck in your studies!

  5. 1. Congratulations on being engaged!! May the excitement eventually overshadow the stress of the process 😉
    2. Where in Fukuoka were you for the JET Programme? I’m here now and would love insight into life in Fukuoka! Granted, I’ve only just started reading your blog!

  6. 1. Congratulations on being engaged!! May the excitement eventually overshadow the stress of the process 😉
    2. Where in Fukuoka were you for the JET Programme? I’m here now and would love insight into life in Fukuoka! Granted, I’ve only just started reading your blog!

  7. I just stumbled upon your blog today and I am hooked! I love the fact that you are very much into language learning.

    Ahhh this is so amazing. I love it when people are into Asian languages or cultures. 🙂 I think it’s beautiful. Please keep us posted in what you are doing.

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