Ashley McDaniel

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So a lot of you have asked me to do a blog while I'm in Korea. Even though I'm html and blog challenged, I thought I still might try. Throughout my time in Korea (south of course) i will update each day on here, showing you where I went, what I did and ate. I'm sure some of you probably are already assuming that my diet will consist of fast food and sweets. However, I'm not going to limit my experience to such foods I could easily find back in the states. Thank you all for the support and I hope that you all will stay tuned in! :)

Friday, October 22, 2010

new experiences..

Tonight my class decided to meet up for a nice meal and share some laughs with each other. So we picked a place right inside 신촌, which is closest to our school. I felt so embarrassed and glad at the same time because everywhere where we went the food just wasn't anything I could bare. My embarrassment came from the difficulty I have always burdened from my childhood, the problem of not being able to enjoy the same foods as most people. However, on the positive side, it brought me great happiness to see my classmates search and continue to search for a place that we could all enjoy (me being the difficult variable). Over time being here in Korea, I have learned that sacrificing my needs for others is much more rewarding. I have learned that its not all about me, and that just being a little humble and letting go . . . really makes for an amazing time with the people around you. During our meal, I got to know a little bit more about the people I see almost everyday in our bland classroom. I sat right in between two individuals from China, I was so lucky enough to have sat beside one that could speak a fare amount of English. I have to be honest and say, that before I wasn't very fond of her. On the flip side, now I can again, honestly say...that she is an amazing and wonderful person. Its amazing how time works, and if you can just take the time to meet people (like I have quoted before), you can just accomplish so much. Also, I think I might have found one of my strengths, over and over again the more I talk to native Korean speakers, they always tell me that my pronunciation is right on. Basically, my intonation is quite on target with the way Koreans speak. I am not trying to put myself on a pedestal, but it surprises me that I keep hearing this. You might think "oh the reason why they say this is because she is just a foreigner who knows their language, and they are just surprised to see her." On the contrary, I have been in contact with several Korean friends who have heard me and both my friends here speak Korean. And they always tell me that my pronunciation is quite good, and say that it is almost scary (in a good way) how native my pronunciation is. Alongside this story, tonight during my time spent among many Chinese friends, the common question would come up "how do you say this in Chinese?" Of course people would ask, and so they would tell me. And as I repeated, they were immediately surprised and told me how fluent my pronunciation was. This also could have been taken as a slight gesture of a "good try (foreigner)" But one of my other friends from America actually studied Chinese, and they heard/listened to her, and still only said to me that I sounded to most like Chinese. The more I am complimented, the harder I try to completely comprehend. Before coming to Korea, my vision was only set forth on learning Korean. Even though that is a great goal, I have realized that my vision may have been a little blocked and obstructed. Sometimes we have to widen our search before we can truly find what we are looking for. I am so happy and blessed to have this opportunity to learn new things and start to put my life's puzzle together. . . . .

The reason for saying all of this comes from the fact that I have the ability to listen and regurgitate what I hear. haha, for instance, my father is a great musician. He has the ability and developed skill to listen and then be able to translate what he hears to fit music. He can hear a song being played or sung and then after about a few taps on the keyboard/piano. . .he can play with great ease and fluidity. Also when I was a young tot, my father tried to teach me the piano, but it was too difficult for one Ear to teach another Ear. In other words, we both had the same quality, which is great, but in other ways hard to master. I think I have found where I can show case my talent, by and through language. And for this, I am humbly grateful.

I believe that after this day, our relationships will definitely increase and our time together in class will be more complete. thank you all for stopping by and reading my post, sorry they are not updated every minute. But always know that I don't forget about you, and to keep praying for me. . .and I the same for you. Love you..all, good night~


  1. I enjoyed reading this. Miss you tons Ashley and I am praying for you while your over there ♥

  2. You're a lovely little linguist in the making. Keep following your heart and listening. Love ya ;D