Korea 2012 Guest Post – Elizabeth White Reflection

Guest Post by Liz White:

Hello blog readers! So I have to admit, writing this post is probably one of the hardest parts of this trip. I mean, how can I possibly sum up this amazing trip in one post? Is there a way for me to describe the breathe-taking view from the summit of each mountain we climbed? Or how about the terror before our first solo, and the feeling of overwhelming pride after we completed it? This trip was such a roller coaster, filled with highs and lows, but ultimately I find myself at a loss for words trying to convey my feelings toward this trip. But, I will do my best.

Now, I have to let you know, when it comes to leaving things up to chance, I tend to be a bit unlucky. Whether it be picking the short straw, or even just praying that I won’t fall on graduation day, the universe has never seemed to be on my side. This being said, i was not very surprised that I got food poisoning within our first 3 days in Korea. That was definitely a low of the trip, but it only left room for improvement. After that, we spent a few days with Mr. An, which was amazing. I love the Korean countryside, and when you add molding onggi clay to that, well I was in Korean heaven. Then we were off to Mr Hong’s house to work with tea, which is when this entire trip just clicked for me. That was why we were there, it was all about the tea and we got to spend over 3 days with the tea. it was phenomenal. After that we had a week where we spent some time in Busan and then also some time at Inje University. It was impossible not to enjoy the company of the Inje students. I think I laughed more in the 2 days we spent with our friends at Inje than I did anytime else on the trip. We all loved tea, so being able to share our love of tea with new friends was an awesome experience. Our last stop on our trip was when we went back to Seoul. Just being in Seoul is an experience in itself, it is just such an incredible place. I was so glad we were able to end our trip in the capital of South Korea.

I learned so much on this trip, and I have to admit, although we learned a ton about tea, we learned so much more as well. We learned about Korean culture and history, and foods, and also just about people. You learn so much just from listening to other people’s stories. So to sum up this blog post, I learned so much academically related to tea and Korean culture. But I also learned so much about my friends, new and old, and myself as well. I know the accumulation of these different branches of knowledge will help carry me far in life, and I still cannot believe that I was able to participate in such an awesome trip. Thank you for taking this journey with us.

Signing off for the last time,
Elizabeth White

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