I’ve lived in Chicago for about 5 years. I moved to the windy city from a small (super small) town and it took me about two weeks to get use to the sounds of the El outside my dorm room and get up the courage to go places on my own. I kept really busy, exploring when I could, when I wasn’t working or being club president or doing my internship, or being in class. It was a big adventure, but it’s time for me to say goodbye to Chicago and to say thanks. By the time this posts I hope I’ll have gotten over a bit of jet lag from flying west and about a day into the future.
So thank you Chicago. Thank you for the memories, for being my home and a great place for me to grow and learn, to explore and to meet amazing people. Chicago, you are a beautiful city with amazing grassroots projects and independent businesses and great food.
When I was really little I wanted to teach. (along with wanting to be an astronaut, ballerina, pianist, secret agent, superhero, and about 50 other things). I also wanted an adventure and to travel. And I’ve been working on it. Slowly. It’s taken about 9 months of living in the suburbs of Chicago with family and taking online courses and running around filling out paperwork to get me to this point. Where I’m currently (as I’m writing this, probably not as this posts) looking at my last two days in the US. I’m honestly a mixture of relived and utterly twisted up in a panic.
I was suppose to leave before March, but there were some unexpected issues. So I had to start over, kinda. But now everything is a go, again. So I’m leaving for South Korea soon. I’ll be teaching English near the mountains a couple hours out from Seoul. It’s an even bigger adventure than the one I had years ago moving to Chicago. I was so scared that I’d fail, but I just threw myself into everything I possibly could that before I knew it I was sleeping at night because I was so exhausted. I loved my classes and my teachers and my classmates and this new home I’d found (when it wasn’t trying to rip the breath from my lungs in winter as I tried to cross the street to class). I met so many amazing people in Chicago, but for some reason it feels like it’s time to move on. After graduation a lot of my friends moved away. Buildings changed, because that’s the way of a city, things don’t stand still, they don’t stay the same. A cute shaved ice shop I absolutely adored in belmont was gone after less than a year and so was the friend who was my unofficial adventure buddy (who moved across the country). I’ve had to go into old posts multiple times to mark that the shops closed down. So as everyone spreads out I feel like it’s a good time to pack up my stuff and move some place new. Some place that I’ve got those same butterflies for. That same panic over failure and screwing up and not being able to get over the culture shock.
The difference is, I won’t be near family. I don’t easily meld into the background. I won’t just disappear and I don’t speak the language. But I will be learning, and teaching. I’ll be exploring and meeting new people and starting a new chapter of adventure. I’m not sure how this will change my blog. I’m not sure when I’ll be able to set up and start blogging again after I get there. It may be Wednesday or it may not. I do not know. I hope it won’t be long and I hope you’ll join me on my adventures once I get into the rhythm, after I get unpacked and use to my new schedule and life as a teacher.