2019: Keep Trying

You’d think by now that I would know my strengths and weaknesses, my habits and distractions. Well, I do. But I also know that, despite my Taurus tendencies, I like to change things up, keep things interesting. I like to break habits and surprise myself.

In 2018, I failed in so many aspects. I failed my resolutions. I failed my goals. But that’s because I didn’t give credit to my strengths and weaknesses. This year, 2019, I will keep trying.

Resolution #1: Lose 20 lbs. Or 10. Or 15lbs. Lose a few inches where appropriate.
I will keep trying to lose weight, inches, and be a healthier, happier me. I am not unhealthy now. I weigh a sturdy 160lbs. This number sucks. “It’s not about numbers” except that it is. I did 3-week and 6-week challenges to better myself in this area. I literally have not gained or lost weight. My measurements are more or less the same as well, aside from a quarter inch on my arms. I steadily worked out. But toward the holidays I tapered out. I lost motivation and allowed myself to be distracted. I don’t regret it though. I just know that now is a time that I can depend on others to help me reach my goals. And not for $35/week. Sorry, FBBC — I can’t afford you.

Resolution #2: Track it. No excuses.
As seen in my previous posts, I am awful at keeping track of it. Whatever ‘it’ may be. I was trying to hold myself accountable by journaling. Let’s face it — I have a love-hate relationship with putting my life online. So I’m trying to be better at tracking my goals, my diet, my exercise, my budget.

Resolution #3: Budget
I tried last year. I didn’t try hard enough. I didn’t learn. This year, I will try to do better. I will sit down old school style if I have to and learn about budgeting. I’d like to make more money. How will I achieve this? Getting a raise is basically out of the question unless I get a promotion, which is coming up next. However, I have a lot of skills. I can cook, massage, and I’m a damned good voice actor. No more petty excuses. If I can make extra money, then I should be doing it. Maybe it’s time to get a second job and have no life. I already don’t have much of a life so there’s no excuse for my spending and not earning.

Resolution #4: reduce my debt by 40%
I hate that this is a resolution. The fact that I let it get out of hand is embarrassing enough. I have a goal to reduce my debt by 40%. Is this attainable? I don’t see why not? But I may not see because I haven’t budgeted. Damn.. back to #3.

Resolution #5: Crush it at work
I already sort of do that, so it isn’t inconceivable to do more crushing. Last year, I won November Team Member of the Month. This put me into the running for Team Member of the 4th quarter. I won. This puts me into the running for Legend (Hourly Team Member of the Year). I think I may stand a chance on this. What will it do for me though? Obviously, it looks good on paper — but how can I translate that into a promotion or use it to help me get into a position that will help me be where I want? I have a mentor at work now, I suppose that would be a question for her.

Resolution #6KEEP TRYING
I won’t give up. I will keep on trying. Whatever it may be — keep on trying.


2018 Resolutions (Delayed)

I have a tendency to start writing something and then it gets drafted and I forget to post it.  So that is my first resolution:

Resolution 1: Follow through.
Whether it’s a text message, a blog entry, an application, whatever! I will follow through with it.

Resolution 2: Weight Loss
Yup. Back on the list. I have been through a lot with this one. One year I gained a lot and then next I lost it. Last year, I gained a lot again. Whether it was stress, diet, hormonal, or lack of exercise — it will not be repeated. I admit I am more than 160lbs. That’s bad. My final goal is to be between 120-130. If I get down to 140, I’ll be pleased. If I plateau at 135, I’ll be still quite happy.
How will I change this? I’ve already started watching what I’m eating. I’m cooking for myself again and tracking how much I’m eating and when.
I’m going to also give myself 30 day food challenges. 30 Days with no pizza. The next 30 with no Mexican food, etc. Let’s see how long that lasts. Taco Tuesday will rue the day.

Resolution 2.5: Exercise
To follow up the weight loss through diet, I am also challenging myself to be more active again. In Korea, I had hills and stairs to climb every day. I didn’t drive as often, so I wasn’t as lazy. Being back in Orlando, I don’t have the natural inclines or the beautiful hiking options. But I do have lakes and water, along with a new paddleboard. I want to get a few hours of paddling in a week if I can (weather permitting). I’m also going to take advantage of ‘New Student’ specials offered by gyms and fitness studios. The first will be 40 days $40 Power Yoga. The next will be 30 day Barre classes. Having these near to my work will allow me to keep to a schedule while avoiding traffic. Let’s see how it goes.

Resolution 3: Make that money!
My new job is wonderful. But no lie, it does NOT pay very well. True, I get paid better than others in my position at the company, but it’s just not that much!! So I need to get back my passion projects. Voice acting and massage therapy. Today I reapplied for my Florida massage license. As soon as I’m done with this cold, I hope to start my voice over demos again and start auditioning. I need additional income one way or another.

Resolution 4: Stick with the Blogging!!
That was my resolution last year and I SUCKED at it. In fact, I went the ENTIRE year without a single blog post. Luckily, I’ve started a new blog that is not connected with this one. If you are interested in checking it out, I ask that you contact me privately. It’s not meant for everyone. Not yet at least.
I hope that I have some new experiences I can share via WittyLMT as well.

Resolution 5: Visit 2 new places this year!
In the past, I have said that I will visit 2 new countries. That maybe more difficult now that I’m state-side and not making the money I did before, and living in a higher-cost-of-living location. This year, I’d like to visit 2 places in the US that I’ve never been. Considering that I’ve barely been around the US, this should be easy. Let’s rack up some mileage points, hey?

2017 In review


If I could wrap 2017 into a single word, I believe “FAIL” is the most appropriate.

I don’t really even remember writing my resolutions. It’s been the longest and shortest year that I can remember.

The only thing I accomplished out of my resolutions was visiting 2 new countries as I had before. I had said I wanted to go to Taiwan — and to Taiwan I went. I did manage a trip to Japan before hand, but I was lucky enough to go to Taiwan with a very amazing friend. It was so great the entire time. I think a lot of it was also the company I had. We made a lot of fun memories.

But I definitely have gained weight, not organized any better (although I organize other people better than myself), I did not really see too many movies, and I am not de-hulkified — although maybe i had less to dehulkify about.

For those of you who don’t know by now, I have moved back to the US from Korea. I was released from my teaching position with about 12 hours notice. Shannon from Scratch wasn’t doing great either – – and right after I had moved into a new, better for cooking apartment. I wasn’t any closer to getting my business stuff going and voiceacting wasn’t getting better for me either. I made a last minute decision to leave. I gave myself 30 days and I was on a plane by Memorial Day weekend.
I spent the first month at home seeing family and traveling a bit to see everyone. I got to visit my older brother and his (now) wife in DC. Then I went to Canada for the first time. I was visiting a wonderful guy who I have had the pleasure of knowing for a couple of years now. We had a lovely short few days together, then I went back to DC for a few more days. So there — that’s how my resolution was accomplished.

Then I started looking for work. I drove for Uber and Lyft while looking for work. It was really difficult. I was convinced I would get a job out of Florida and be back on my merry way. I did not. I finally got a job after 4 months.

At the end of September I took an admin job at a Loews hotel in Orlando. I work at Universal for a great company with a lot of potential. I have 4 great bosses who couldn’t be more different from each other. I work across and with another admin who is amazing. I feel blessed to be in a position that I’m actually enjoying and with people I enjoy working with. The pay isn’t great, but it’s a start and probably better than some other people make. But there’s very little chance of raises unless I get into a higher position. But I’ll be in this position for a while I think. or so. I’m curious to see which direction I go with this. I could have gotten into a sales position in a hotel and probably been making 2-3 times as much.

Anyway — I’m still single at 31, with a regular office job for the first time in my life, and living at home with a very patient mother. So that’s my year in review. Next post: Resolutions.

Resolutions: 2017

I was lazy last year. I don’t think I ever posted the resolutions. My first resolution this year is to publish this before Feb 1, 2017. 🙂 (I’ve drafted it a few times and we’re more than a week into 2017).


My actual RESOLUTION 1: As always — travel!
As with previous years, I once again would like to visit 2 countries again this year, hopefully new ones. Once again, Taiwan in on my list. I think this is the year I will finally get to go. I will definitely be in the US again this year. I hope to make it a good long trip this time, seeing my brother get married in October and a very good family friend in November. However, I wouldn’t protest to visiting a different part of the US other than DC or Florida this year. I will be in New Jersey for the wedding, but perhaps can go to California for a week or so to visit my multitude of friends living there. I wouldn’t protest going to Philippines, Thailand, or Vietnam again – – but different places that I hadn’t been to before. Or perhaps Cambodia. I guess only time will tell!

RESOLUTION 2: Weight Loss-ish

Another repeat resolution, but this time I’d like to get down to 130-135lbs (~60kg). I currently weigh in around 65kg on a bad day (~143lbs). If I can tone up and strengthen my body a little, then I think this should be an easy accomplishment. I may need to start eating my own food that I cook for others as well. To help me obtain this goal, I’m doing a very ‘new years ish’ thing: I joined a gym. However, it’s not a typical weights and cardio gym: I’m joining Body & Seoul – – a martial arts gym. I have up to 4 classes per week for the next 6 months. My goals are to take 3-4 each week (2 minimum).

RESOLUTION 3: Physical/Hygiene Care

I have never been very good at daily rituals: taking vitamins or pills, using facial products, brushing my hair, making my bed, etc. And although I do brush my teeth every day and clean my linens once a week (more or less), I am making a solid effort this year to get to a dentist. I’m embarrassed to say I don’t know the last time I went to one! Oral hygiene is very important and I have been seriously slacking. I also am going to make a solid effort to take vitamins each day and go through the skin care rituals each day (washing, toner, moisturizer, etc). I am now 30 and this is when things start to really go south, “they” say. I will do a better job of taking care of myself.

RESOLUTION 4: Organization.

It’s no big secret that I am not the most organized person on the planet. I’m not at a ‘slob’ or ‘horder’ level, by any means, but I definitely could stand to ‘adult’ a bit — as my friend says. On January 15th I’m moving into a new apartment and I am hoping it will bring a new sense of organization to my life. My living quarters will be organized and cleaner. I’m not a minimalist and probably never will be, so I won’t pledge to get rid of a bunch of crap. I like my crap. Also, ,my business will be better organized and recorded. Paperwork will be done every night (ugh. homework.). I want to try and organize my daily routine. New year, new me, blah blah blah. It will take a lot of work, and in about 10 weeks I’m going to recap here and laugh about what very likely will not change. Some things are meant to be.

RESOLUTION 5: De-hulk-ify

You don’t want to make me angry. You won’t like me when I’m angry. But it’s not someone wanting me to be angry or trying to make me angry. It’s my reaction. It’s shameful and I am more embarrassed than the poor person who is on the receiving end of my anger. Sometimes, I just lose my shit. And the fuckin’ tidal wave caused by Hurricane Shannon will bring tornado friends. Maybe that’s extreme. Maybe it’s not. A few people have seen me upset, but it is VERY VERY rare for someone to see the dark side. The TRUE dark side. I don’t want to have to hide that anymore.. and not because it needs to be hidden.. but because it doesn’t need to exist at all. I would like to be more accepting of situations and better handling of the BS that life throws at me.


Five is a good number to leave on. Let’s see how we do.


Oh wait, no there’s one more.

RESOLUTION 6: Watch more movies

That’s not a big one really. But I guess I hadn’t realized there were cult-classics that I just have not seen! Tonight, for example, I watched When Harry Met Sally. Yeah, I had NEVER seen it. I’m not really a romantic comedy person (aside from the occasional period pieces, but still not really comedy), so perhaps that explains it. But it was sweet. And every other scene was either great or awful. So I want to make a list of all the new movies I see this year. Whether I watched it at home, a friend’s, or in the theater.. I will hopefully keep track of all I watch.

Kk. I’m done now.

Wish me luck.

2016: A not-so-quick review


As it turns out, I did not make any resolutions for 2016. I was apparently so pleased with doing well in 2015, that I completely forgot about 2016. This year has been wonderful and horrible for a lot of people. For me, it’s just …been.

The Downs of 2016:
Loss:  In January, my family put down our family dog, Laci. I was crushed. I couldn’t talk to anyone in my family for a few days. I think I’m still a bit upset actually. As all dogs are for their human companions, she was more than a pet. She was my friend and playmate. She was my emotional (and sometimes physical) rock. We cuddled and walked and swam together. We would take long naps on the couch or in the sun. It was a painful time, but she’s in a better place. In February, my great (wonderful and amazing)-aunt Shirley left us. She had been going through a lot physically, emotionally, and mentally. She was surrounded by family, and then when everyone went home, she passed on. Like Laci, she was more than just my great-aunt. She was my friend. She always was there for me when I needed her – just an email away. During my own petulant pre-teen and teenage years, she was the person I could and did stay up all night talking to. She was a beautiful person with a unique way of living. That’s how we connected and bonded. We were both a little different from everyone else in the family, but we managed just fine. I was not fortunate enough to see her before she passed. I was, however, fortunate enough to see her husband, Uncle Charlie, while I was home in April. I surprised him in the care center he stayed at. Then he and I had a wonderful chat out on the gazebo. We just talked, I told him about my doings abroad and he talked about his current state and how he was proud of me. Not too long after, he also passed. He joined his love in the great beyond. I really feel for my cousin Stephanie for losing her parents the way she did. It’s not something I can imagine dealing with, and hope I won’t have to for a long time.

Love: I had a person I was interested in back in 2015, but he quickly changed his mind with no explanation. We had an amazing connection right off, and I was a little hung up on him for a portion of 2016. I found myself subconsciously gazing toward the street he lived on when I passed. I sent a message now and then to inquire his health. He never responded, so I finally somehow let him go. Toward the middle of the year, I found another person who more than captured my interest. Again, we had a lovely connection straight off and I found myself constantly wanting to be in his company. I thought the feelings were mutual, but once again after a few weeks, my affections were rebuffed. However, we continued to hang out. This was probably not the healthiest move on my part. It seriously delayed the process of me ‘getting over’ him. But still, his unique way of thinking and the situations we found ourselves in were so enjoyable. I knew I was in the friendzone (after hooking up?! which is bullshit, but whatever), but I still felt like we were more. I did all I could to get out of that mindset, including sending him home with another girl one night. And that crushed me. I didn’t eat for days and I fell into a sort of depression. I couldn’t understand why I was so upset about this, when I knew it would happen and I even encouraged it. I had no right to feel the way I did when I knew that he saw me only in this certain light. He was a temporary best friend. I was playing the role of Eponine, as I had done before, but I somehow made it worse for myself. Sure, I didn’t get shot for it, but I alienated myself from my friends and I only wanted to hang out with him. And then, he left. With a mere few days notice, he came and went. And again it crushed me. But I realized how unhealthy I was to have him around me. We stay in contact, sort of. And I would like to have a true friendship with him, but I realized that he was not healthy for me in my current space and place. If our friendship does maintain, I will absolutely be happy for that. If it does not, then I wish him the best of luck with whatever he chooses in life. He’s the type of person who will succeed and bring wonders to the world when he finds his passion.

Others: “I don’t speak politics” is something I often say. I don’t get involved politically and I prefer not to. However, I have to just say as a person observing through media outlets abroad, WTF, America. Donald Trump? Like… what? Is Kim Kardashian going to be VP? Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kris Jenner found her way into a government position with this kind of ridiculousness. I guess we shall see what happens with that. Oh yea, and Britain decided to secede from the EU. That’s something I know minimal about and won’t try to pretend that I do. It’s just a weird thing to have happened that I wanted to mention.
I also had a bit of an issue at one point with casinos. It was my own private matter and I’m happy to say I’m doing a whole load better. I spent a lot of time at the casino. A lot of time. I was up and down and will never disclose to anyone what actually was made or lost. I will say that meeting a guy in the casino who had been betting money that was my monthly income on a good month, and watching him lose it all, was a wake up call for me. I get an urge now and then to go back, but I haven’t, and hopefully will one day- – but in a better and healthier mindset. I think winter will help me stay away for a while.. it’s too cold to leave my apartment if I have to.

The Ups of 2016:
: While I experienced loss early on in the year, my family has had a couple of additions, more or less. On Memorial Day 2016, my older brother finally popped the question to his girlfriend Katie. This had been a day I had been looking forward to for an absurd amount of time. I knew a few years ago that she would one day be my lawful sister and I am thrilled to say she will be officially taking on wife-hood in October 2017. Later on in the year – December to be specific, my younger cousin Danielle and her wonderful hubs Denny welcomed their first child together, Nancy Faye. She is a healthy and lovely child with a doting and proud older sister, Fiona. I am so happy for them and their families, and for my grandparents to be able to hold and interact with their first great-grandchild. As it happens, Nancy Faye was born on my grandmother’s birthday. I couldn’t imagine a more wonderful gift.

Travel: I did get to travel a bit this year also. I celebrated New Years 2016 in Dubai with my friend Kendra. I visited D.C. (in what was supposed to be THE proposal weekend) with my family and also spent another week in Florida with everyone there. In September, I did a last minute trip to Vietnam for a week. I enjoyed a great holiday on my own and met some very interesting people. I had some gorgeous clothes made and I now have a 1 year multi-entry visa.. let’s see if I use it again (ha!). In November, I booked a ticket back to Orlando at 2am on a Tuesday and was on the plane by 6pm that same day. It certainly was an unanticipated trip and the surprise was wonderful for my family. I got to cook for and enjoy a Thanksgiving meal with my family (sans my very angry older brother). I want to say I traveled more, but I really don’t think I did… I can’t remember (which is a bit disturbing).

Business: I spent the majority of 2016 on a D-10 visa (looking for work) while trying to build up Shannon from Scratch. I did voiceovers and was making okay money with that. I got to dub a few characters in a K-drama that was being shown in Ghana or somewhere random. I also participated as an extra in a movie featuring Kim SooHyun. No idea what movie or anything about it except it had to do with casinos.
Shannon from Scratch, I am happy to say, is doing well at the moment and I am curious to see if it will have the opportunity to expand in this next year. I went from only 2 clients per week with ~20 meals between them to having at least 5 clients each week with on average ~50 meals per week. The most I cooked in one week was 75 meals with about 9 clients during the week. Some clients are less consistent, getting only 10 meals every month or two, or changing from 2 meals to 5 meals each week depending on their situation. New clients are coming in still and I am looking forward to organizing my venture a bit more and seeing where it will take me. I also took on a very part time teaching gig for 1.0million won/month + and E2 visa for 9 hours per week. While the timing of it is really inconvenient, the students are actually really great and the staff is really chill. I actually do enjoy teaching there for the most part, and I appreciate the extra bit of income there also.

Others: I also am proud to say that for the first time EVER, I have lived in one place for longer than a year. I will be moving out in 2 weeks, but it will have been 1.5 years of me living in my apartment. The new one will be very nice also.. a good location close to where I am now, but less of a hill, and on a second floor with better ventilation and kitchen space (hopefully). I also have to follow up the ‘Downs-Love’ section by saying that “when one door closes, another opens.” To avoid possibly jinxing myself, I will leave it at that.
Also, one of my best friends was able to visit in March and that was a great week, as we celebrated her 30th here. Then after my 30th, another friend from Orlando came in for a couple of weeks and we had a blast as well. In September after my Vietnam trip, my mother was able to join me out here for a second round of Korea. This time I could spend more time with her and have more experiences than the previous visit.

To conclude, I suppose, I will once again say.. 2016 has just.. been. It had its ups and downs and it all equaled out in my eyes. It will be a distant memory soon, and I’ll be writing about 2017 in no time..ish.

Nerd alert!

I hadn’t considered the term “nerd.” I use it with some people in a playful way. It just so happens that these people are usually ones who I can converse with about fantasy and scifi novels. I like to read. I really enjoy reading series, epics, etc. I have read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the GalaxyDune, The Wheel of Time, Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, Harry Potter, Game of Thrones, Twilight (yea, i was stuck in bed with a back injury for a while), The Hunger Games, Percy Jackson, Sookie Stackhouse and more! I intend to keep reading because I really do enjoy it. I like to get lost in these worlds that are not like ours. These seemingly impossible situations are fantastic. I especially like to read books that just keep going.  Dune was a bit ridiculous after the 4th book but I kept on and have even read some of the newer and completely terrible books. I somehow managed to crawl through the absolutely AWFUL Sookie Stackhouse series. ((Yea, True Blood was based off this series and THANK GOD they veered away from it.)) I really want to read Ender’s Game and all of the books that come with it!

Last year, I read the entire The Wheel of Time series and loved it. I was completely addicted. I would read it on the subway, while I waited in line at Costco, when a laser was zapping away hair from my lady parts, when my students were taking their tests, in the bathtub, etc. I felt like Belle from Beauty and the Beast when she walks through town reading and completely ignoring everything around her.

Because of that series, I have made friends and conversations with some interesting people. We have ‘nerd talk.’ And I didn’t think twice about that phrase. But today, a guy was trying to hit on me and said “Wow, it’s so nice to meet a fellow nerd.” And I thought to myself, “Wait. Am I a nerd?”

This led to me looking up the definition of nerd! According to dictionary.com, the American term:


noun, Slang.

a person considered to be socially awkward,boring, unstylish, etc.

an intelligent but single-minded person obsessedwith a nonsocial hobby or pursuit:

a computer nerd.
But the British version is:


noun (slang)


a boring or unpopular person, esp one obsessed with something specified: a computer nerd

a stupid and feeble person
So, naturally, after seeing this definition, I considered this. I am not “boring.” I am not “unpopular.” I am pretty sure I am QUITE stylish! I am not often “socially awkward” (although I have moments, but don’t we all?). I would go with “intelligent,” but definitely not “single-minded” nor “obsessed with a nonsocial hobby.”
Why, then, would someone hitting on me use this term? I had been using it as a term of endearment in a way. For some of these people, the word fits. For others, I would say it is a complete miss!
Does reading a genre and identifying with people who also read books like this group me in with them?

Plainly: no it does not. It is completely unfair to designate a title like that to someone. This deep thinking brings me back to other words and phrases used for people that are completely ridiculous. It’s not necessarily about stereotyping, however. It’s about how we use seemingly harmless words to identify people.

I know this train of thought could easily continue on into a black hole of opinion and debate, but I’m going to leave it here because I don’t want to get into it with myself.
I am happy to read the books that I do. I am happy to have conversations and be able to relate to people who have similar interests as myself.
I guess I am a fantasy book nerd. I know I am a musical theater geek. I am a style-conscious woman. I am who I am, but I know that I am also guilty of labeling people with terms that I have in the past considered to be harmless.
Maybe this rant is pointless. Maybe it is endearing. Maybe it’s time to go to sleep.
Maybe I’m just being.

Solo Female Traveller: Table for One

I am what many people call “an independent woman.” I take care of myself (most of the time) and have no qualms about doing stuff on my own. Since I was young, I have preferred to do stuff without help from others.

When I was 20, I decided I would move to Hawai’i. I was encouraged to go and make sure it was a place I could live. So I went on my first big trip by myself. I stayed in a hostel and made friends and did what 20 year olds did. A month after I turned 21, I moved to the Aloha State completely on my own without knowing a soul out there. I managed well enough.

21-in-hi  North Shore, Oahu, 200something, my first visit to Hawai’i

When I was 25, I decided it was time for another move. I would move to Thailand to teach English as a second language. Three days before my 26th birthday, I packed my bags for the 3rd or 4th time and I boarded a plane. The first leg was delayed, causing me to miss the following 3 flights. I arrived in Surat Thani on a lovely monsoony afternoon, greeted by my new roommates the eve of my 26th. My first morning in Thailand was my birthday. During that time, I traveled to the Maldives completely on my own. I couchsurfed for a few nights and then found a nice local atoll to crash on for a few days. I couldn’t afford to stay in a fancy resort (although all inclusive) and it isn’t like many people go to these romantic locations on their own. I saw an opportunity, and I took it. I had a lovely stay at the Dhonvali View on Maafushi. The staff was amazing and set me up on dive trips and other atoll visits, and included all meals for me, set up on the roof overlooking the ocean.

That is the moment I realized the downfall of traveling solo: I would be eating alone. The staff would occasionally join me and chat with me about life and whatever. Sure, it allowed me to gather my thoughts as I ingested some local cuisine and gazed upon the desert waters. But I was eating alone.
In Maldives, when I eating alone, it really wasn’t so bad. I didn’t mind really at the time. But I didn’t quite realize how many meals abroad I would eat in silence.


Not a bad place to be stuck.


Rooftop dinner for one.

The latter half of my 20s has/was spent living in Korea. While there, I took a trip to Boracay on my own. I got myself a nice quiet room for the first half of the week and met with a friend for dinners or random travelers for lunch. A fruit shake for breakfast wasn’t a big deal for me on my solo journey.
It was the end of my trip when I booked myself a nicer resort with a fancy pool and buffet that I started experiencing the Maldives sensation, squared. I remember stepping up to the host and the lady greeting me with “Hello, miss. Table for 2?” Confused, I saw behind me was a man. We laughed awkwardly for a moment as his wife walked up and I replied, “Just me. This guy is taken already.” I don’t know if what I saw in her eyes was embarrassment on her part or for me. She sat the other couple first and then proceeded to make me wait while she found a tiny table in an obvious part of the room. It was the table anyone who has worked in a restaurant knows. THE table that doesn’t get seated unless desperate. They put me at the desperate table.
But being the proud and independent woman I am, I held my head high, straightened my posture and ate like a champ. The next day, as she walked me to the same table, I asked to be seated elsewhere.. a little less obvious. My wish was granted and I was put into a corner. Damnit. Whatever, the food was fucking incredible.

This is something I have been enduring for a decade. I know the motions and have learned to take it with a grain of salt… but unfortunately, it’s a bit harder without the tequila and lemon.
Quick flashfoward to today, September 16th in Hoi An, Vietnam. I am on a solo trip in a beach town at a nice hotel & spa. It’s my first breakfast buffet here. I cannot fucking wait. I walk up and I see the dining room is full. There are barely any seats. I tell the hostess “Just me” and she looked confused. “Table for one, please.” Fear or shock, or both?, filled her eyes and she looked around for a table or a place to waste on a single woman. Then she smiles and says “Follow me, please.” So I followed her through the dining room. I kept trying to find that table that I knew she would place me at, but this dining room didn’t have one! Whaaaaaaat? She took me through the dining hall and OUTSIDE TO THE POOL. Where a nice square table set for 2 was set. Next to a crying Asian child. Next to a couple who were soaked from swimming. Next to people in their bathing suits.
She tried to put me outside. Then, as if to embarrass me further, she asked if I was with the gentleman near the door who was waiting for his omelette. Deja. Fucking. Vous. Nope. I replied in my sweetest before-10am venom-dripping voice. I am by myself. I am eating alone. I would like a table with the rest of the guests, thank you very much.
“But miss, there are no tables.” So I went inside and found a long table that had 8 seats. The 4 corners were occupied by 2 separate couples. I walked up and said “Excuse me, is one of these free?” Silent nods. I sat down. “But miss!” said the hostess. I sweetly glared at her and said, “Why yes! I would love a coffee, thank you so much.”

And that is how I started my day.
Solo travelers, especially women, be wary of eating alone. Not because of someone drugging you (although, yes be wary of that), but because assumptions are made and you are better than whatever the assumption is. Find your spot and sit in it. Then proceed to make a mess and eat like a big, leaving bits of jam on the table for them to have to clean up. Actually, try to eat like a lady with a little self-respect.. but definitely leave a bit of jam on the table.



(from my blog participation at Tickets To:)

Cute socks are a thing. I don’t remember them being a ‘thing’ in the States, but I do remember seeing what I considered to be cute socks and buying them. Even if I don’t wear them because I lived in Florida and we don’t believe in socks for 10 months out of the year.

In Korea, however… cute socks are a BIG thing. And I LOVE IT! I have pretty much gotten rid of any pair of boring sock I brought with me and have happily replaced them with awesome socks. They have socks here that are a ‘pair’… where the picture is in half and you can put them together and make a face or something.


Another fantastic one tend to be some kind of animal or superhero on the heel which is the mouth. Like this Batman one:


And of course this is my favorite. Just look and laugh. They have it in weird Asian faces or ‘yellow hair’ people. If you’re lucky you’ll get Frankenstein or a Mummy. Ha!


This is a perfect gift for friends and family back home. They’re cheap at only 1,000-2,000won (less than $1) each. Until you buy 20 and then it adds up.




Living abroad is amazing. I don’t regret it for a minute. Well, some things I do regret. Not seeing my cousin getting married. Not being there for big birthdays. Not being there for graduations or to celebrate jobs or certifications. Not being there for family when they’re sick or injured. But this one is hitting me hardest right now. Today, my family is putting down our dog.  So here’s my tribute to my bestest furiend.

laci stache


We knew she was a sweetheart from the beginning.
Our neighbors came home with a white labrador named Graci. We came home with her sister, a more golden colored girl named Laci.
They were quite the pair: Laci and Graci. Graci was a bit more energetic, always trying to get Laci riled up, luring her into the lake and then not letting her back on shore. Laci preferred to just hang out and watch everyone play.
Maybe she was lazy. She definitely was my Lazy Laci. Is. She’s not gone yet, but it’s not long now.

laci tired
I’ve been the traveler in the family: living in Hawaii, living in Tampa, Thailand, and now Korea. I always found the times I was home to be a little hard. But my dog helped me through it. She was a good girl. Is still. She’s not gone yet, but it’s not long now.
She’d drive my family crazy trying to wake up and go out and eat at 6am. But with me, she found a way to just sleep in. We shared that trait: holding it until we couldn’t anymore before scurrying out of bed to go to the bathroom. She’d groan a bit and sit up and lay back down and repeat until I finally opened my eyes.
When I came home from Thailand, she was so happy. I think she didn’t believe it was me, but when she realized it, she was all jumping and cuddles.. like in the youtube videos. We hung out all summer. We would go for drives and hang out. We’d sleep in and eat and be lazy farts. We’d tan outside and then go back in when it was too hot or if it rained. I got her to the dog park a few times. And my lab, who was terrified of water (see Graci above), finally went back into the water. Babysteps. First up to her elbows, then up to her chest, and then one day she swam. She’s not a fetch kind of dog. She’s not a chase after and run like crazy dog. She’s a hang out by your side and race home when Mom’s car goes by kind of dog. She loves the Grinch as much as I do. Her favorite toy was my Grinch doll. Is. Is. She’s not gone yet.
She was proper angry with me when I told her I was going to Korea. When I came home for my cousin’s wedding, I found her on the couch and she just rolled over and waited for a belly rub.

laci bed This bitch could outsleep the best of us.
I left again and came back as a surprise last Thanksgiving.. two thanksgivings ago. The whole family was gathering at my uncle’s house, as usual, but everyone was bringing their dog. Except Laci. Nobody knew I was coming in except my brother and cousin-in-law, so I swooped home and picked her up and listened to her whine for an hour drive to Uncle Scott’s.  When my grandparents and father pulled up and were carrying stuff inside, I let Laci out and she just casually walked up and sniffed the grass. My dad said, ‘Whose dog is that?’ My uncle replied, “I don’t know. It looks like Laci.” And there I was. She was my helper that day.
I was home for a few weeks. The night before I left, I sat with her on the couch and we cried together. She cried for me. She just whined and got angry at me for leaving. I didn’t know it’d be the last time I saw her alive. I swear I didn’t know.
She’ll facetime with me. She’ll whine a bit and jump a little and tolerate a mediocre belly rub from my brothers or mom, but nobody could give her the belly rub that I could.
laci shirt

She was not a happy camper when I tried to keep her from shedding, but she tolerated it.
She’s an old lady. Loyal, Angelic, Calm, Intuitive. My Laci. My princess angel-face. I don’t know how I’m going to sleep at night when I’m at my mother’s house. I’m going to be so cold sitting on the couch without her to sit on my feet. She’s been there for me through so much. She’s been there for my family. She stayed with my brother when he was sick on the couch. She allowed the cats to cuddle her or bite her without retaliation. She’s been there for me through more than I can probably recall. And here I am, in Korea, when she needs me the most.
I won’t forget her. Her weird way of sitting with her legs apart. Her double high fives for my brother.laci high five Her shake when you told her to lay down. Finding her in the car when I left the door open for just a second. Towel time. Her hair everywhere. Everywhere. Her babydolls. Her ‘couldnt give a shit’ look for other dogs. Her stealing treats from the neighbor’s house. Her morning cuddles. Her lazy ass on the couch days. Smoking with her. She just wanted to be around us. She couldn’t decide if she wanted to be inside or outside usually. Her selective hearing the last few years. Her.

Soon it’ll be time to sleep, but only one of us will wake.

Sleep well, my princess angel face.

Laci Angelface

2015: Resolutions Review


Let’s review my resolutions for 2015…

Original: 1. I want to lose weight. Just like everyone else. Except this has to happen. I can’t handle looking at myself in photographs or on a scale. I have never weighed more than I do now and I don’t ever want to again. The number is so despicable to me that I can’t even say it aloud.

Resolution: Lose 15lbs.

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!! I was close to 165lbs and am now down to about 143lbs. 10 kg down. 20 lbs. Well done, me!

2. Get laid. Seriously, I thought I was being practical last year with that whole ‘get laid 20 times’ thing.. such bullshit. However, I refuse to give way to this one. I will get laid at least 20 times – it counts even if it’s with the same person. No need being a slut about it. I’m 28, not 22.
MISSION VERY ACCOMPLISHED!!! A special thank you to those who participated in helping me achieve this goal. 😉 You know who you are. 

3. Visit 2 new countries again! Last year I had hoped it would be Japan and Taiwan. Instead, it was Japan (twice) and Philippines. I would still like to visit Taiwan this year, my goal instead of Japan is Malaysia. Luckily I have a friend who lives in Kuala Lumpur who I have made many promises to visit….

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!! I managed to visit Malaysia and Dubai in 2015. I also got to revisit Hong Kong and Japan. I’d say it was a very good travel year.

4. VISIT GARY in KL!! (gary – this WILL happen)

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!! Thank you Gary and Jon for hosting me and putting up with my elephant-itus legs. It was an honor becoming a lobster with you Gary. And I’m more than pleased to say that Gary swung through Korea and we had a lovely champagne brunch…. and looked WAY better than we did in Malaysia. Boys, congrats on putting a ring on it! (your finger. a ring on your finger.)


5. Save 10K – something that is not as easy to do in the US. It’s pretty simple for people working in Korea. When my flight and housing are paid for, I get a pension, and hopefully make a few $ on the side by selling food and what not… this should be easy.

                 MISSION NOT QUITE ACCOMPLISHED!! 😦 I’m more than halfway there though! Yay for that. And it is possible that I can have that by the time I get home if I don’t go spending it all again. Damn. I’m bad at this one.

And so, with 2015 gone and 4/5 resolutions completed, I’d have to say that I did damn well! Look for the new blogs with my 2015: A Review and another with my 2016 resolutions.


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