Thursday, June 26, 2008

Grand Spa

I go through phases where I HAVE to get out of my hometown (Yorba Linda) and find a nice place to relax. So, Tuesday I got off work, went home to clean up, including using my handy-dandy Korean style energy-efficient clothes dryer, then ventured into downtown Los Angeles for some R and R. Just wanted to share I got to eat AUTHENTIC Korean food: Kimchi fried rice for dinner, and in the morning donkasuh for breakfast, Korean pork cutlett. Yum...a nice treat for me. Lately I've been eating homemade Mexican food which i love. But, this was a nice treat for me. And, that's all I have to say about that.

Korean Lessons

Oh my God...I am so friend Cara's Korean is AMAZING!!! (I read your messages to Jolie!!) So, I decided to put on hold my lessons for Korean language study. I just didn't have enough money for the tuition this summer. But, come fall, I just might be able to do it. And, I think I will, if all goes according to plan. It is a Yonsei school in Los Angeles that offers a Korean language program. That seems more attainable for me. I'll even get a discount on the tuition if I can find a Yonsei alumni to write a letter for me. Wow~how's that for saving money? Anyways, I still have a strong desire to learn another language, whether it be Korean, or Spanish. So, saving my pennies for fall.

An Excellent Invention

I am so excited. I used my Korean style clothes dryer the other day. What a great invention!!! It is nothing more than a tool of wire to hang dry one's clothes. However, I must say, I feel proud and amazed, somewhat SURPRISED at myself, for enjoying this new lifestyle so much! I mean really, what "normal", middle-class, Western person WILINGLY CHOOSES to hang dry their clothes instead of using a traditional clothes dryer? I love the thought that I'm conserving energy, saving money, and making a POSITIVE ("GREEN") contribution to our environment. Two years ago, I never thought like that before. In fact, I was ANNYOED and IRRITATED that Koreans used hang drying methods. But now, I think it makes alot of sense. I never imagined myself hang drying my clothes as a preferred lifestyle choice, but, it feels great to me now to be doing so at this moment in time!!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

I'm beating the heat and other things...

Today was sooooo hot!! It was 104 F at noon today; yesterday was 105 F as well. To cool off after work today I went to the movies. Two hours of wonderful air conditioning. I saw the movie "The Love Guru". The audience was rolling with laughter. You should see it if you can. Yesterday after work one of my co-workers, Matt, was kind enough to give me a ride. So, he dropped me off at the park where I took an afternoon nap for 3 hours under a tree!! Oh, how I needed the rest after my 2 days off. I went on Tuesday, right after work, to the sauna, and spent the nite there. It was sooooooo relaxing!! On Wednesday I left the spa around 11, had a late breakfast at The Coffee Bean; it was there that I tried my first ever hazlenut ice blended drink; i loved it!! After a cottage cheese with raspberry topping and an English scone, I headed over to the Yonsei Korean language campus in LA. However, they were not able to see me that day due to other appointments they had. So, I hung out at the pc room (the computer room) for a couple of hours before heading by train back to Orange County. It was a nice day to get out, then at home I relaxed more, napping and watching tv. On Thursday my other day off I ran errands with a friend. Yes, I did it: I bought a Korean style clothes dryer!!! The kind where you hang your clothes from!! I can't believe it, but I did. Actually, I had been wanting one for quite some time now, partly because my landlord charges a dollar in quarters to dry a load of laundry, and I was hoping to save about a dollar a week per load in drying money. Now, I am saving that money, plus the cost of energy it would take to run the dryer too. I am amazed and quite proud of myself, I must say!!! It's strange,to me, a little bit, to live this way, without a dryer, but, at the same time, after living in Korea over 3 years, it doesn't seem so weird. It seems rather economical to me!!

As for my mental condition, right now it is allright. Today at work was slow, probably because of the hot weather. Only one man, who spoke with an accent, called me rude today! As I was taking his order, it was very difficult for me to understand him. I was like, I'm sorry, but I can't understand you. Let's try again. Anyways, I'm glad work is over for today. And, when I think about my life situation right now, meaning, no car, renting a room, low-paying job, little spending money, I think, "allright, Monica, it won't be like this forever". And, I can get by; I can survive. That's when I'm in my RIGHT mind. When I'm optimistic, and hopeful. Like today. But, on other days, when I'm not in a good frame of mind, I think, "no car, no boyfriend/no love, forget it". I know I got enough sleep last night, and, I slept well, so, I feel well rested today. Some days I still struggle with insomnia, and that might affect my thinking as well (being less clear or rational). So, that was my day today. I'm thinking about making chicken enchiladas tonite, tomorrow, or this week when I have time. Tomorrow is Sunday, I go into work at 10 am. And, our weather is supposed to cool down to 85 F. More later...

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Grand Spa in Los Angeles, California

So, yesterday I finished working 5 days in a row at my cashiering job. Typically I work 2 days on 1 day off, or 3 days on then one day off, but this week I had 5 days in a row on, and then 2 days in a row off. So, as soon as I got off work, I headed to the bus stop where I got the bus to Fullerton. From there I was able to take the train into LA, and then a short subway ride into the city. I went to Grand Spa, which is for men and women. I took a wonderful sit-down type of shower. It felt so good. Then, into the pools for me. First the warm soak, then the hot soak, and finally the cold cold soak. My body was loving it. As I was taking my sit down style shower, I was pondering about our drought. We, in California, are in a drought. So, how can we rationalize how much water we use (for the saunas?). I didn't have an answer. My only rationale was that, hey, at least I was using cool water, and therefore less energy, than a hot hot shower! Besides, when at home, I am taking shorter showers these days so as to be more environamentally friendly and concious. So, back to my sauna trip. Then, I just relaxed in the pool rooms, rinsed off with some cool water, and went into the blazing hot steam room for 5 minutes, cooled off, then went to the blazing hot mist steam room for another 5 minutes or so. I tell ya, these rooms were VERY RELAXING to me. It was just what I needed after a 5 day week of work.

Then I opted for some Korean food. I ordered dwen chang chi gae, one of my all time favorites. Oops, I ate a bite of jalepeno and burned my throat, nose, and stomach. My body didn't know what happened to it. I proceeded to eat more carefully after that. By then it was around 11 so I hit the hay until morning time. I slept on these foam pads on the floor where there is heat that comes up from underneath the floor. It was a familiar, cozy feeling to me! I took a sleeping pill to help me sleep better, and was only up once or twice durning the nite to use the bathroom. Come morning time, my body was soooo relaxed by this point, I wanted more! So, I lounged around, half in a doze for a couple more hours, in the tv lounge room in a lounge chair that stretched out. I was so comfortable, and so relaxed. I could have easily stayed there all day!! But, no, I enjoyed a french vanilla latte from the fresh grind vending machine while reading my book, A New Earth. Then it was time to get ready for the day and move on. While I probably can't afford to go to the sauna every week, once in a while is quite fine too. It's $20 to stay overnite, not including train fare, food, and miscellaneous. However, I will say this. That the $20 fee for the sauna was DEFINATELY worth it. I relaxed, and feel rejuvenated. Whatever stress I had the day before have vanished, disappeared, and melted away. Allright, maybe not totally. But, my mental outlook on life improved drastically all from one nite of pleasure with the sauna. This is definately a lifestyle keeper!!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

What day is it today?

I finished my 5th day in a row of work today. I woke up this morning confused. It was a Tuesday, but I was like, uh, what day is it? Is it my day off today? Oh well. I don't have a regular work schedule. I am at the boba loca cafe right now as I write this. I'm due to catch the bus to downtown fullerton in about 10 minutes. Then off to a sauna in Korea town, Los Angeles, for some relaxation in the spas tonite. Tomorrow maybe the beach then Thursday shopping. I am bringing a book with me, "A New Earth." I've had this book in hand for a few months now, but am just now delving into it. More later...I don't wanna miss my bus!!

Monday, June 16, 2008

I Admire My Friends' Blogs...

I was reading one of my friend's blogs yesterday, Jackie Bolen. Man, I am so jealous! She has the ability to take ordinary life, and write it into something creative, and interesting to read. I admire her blog, really. I also read Julene's blog, and it was good to read about her life, and what she's been up to. She's experiencing the change of life right now, and I admire her as well. And then there's Cara. She just finished her 2 years of teaching ESL in Asia, and now she gets to spend a summer studying further her Korean. I am so jealous of her. It seems like my friends are leading intersting, extraordinary lives, and then there's me, and like, my life seems so boring compared to theirs!! Well, I shouldn't compare, but, really, I do, or I did!! So, I am inspired from my blogging friends to try to make my blog more interesting, even the mundane of life. Ha, we shall see.

My life is pretty boring right now. I am limited to how I get around, since I am without a car right now. Walking in the heat this afternoon was barely tolerable. I am saving up for a bed right now, and then maybe I'll think about getting a car. Part of me opts not to get a car, simply because I don't look forward to paying $4 or $5 dollars a gallon for gas!! Really, $50 a month for a bus pass is more palatable for my budget, but, I would LOVE the freedom that comes from having your own wheels.

I've been studying Spanish less often than before. I bought a workbook and began to go through it, but got busy or burned out, or just side-tracked from my studies. But, I have friends at work who are hungry to learn English better, so, I am working on figuring out a way to help them! I bought bilingual word cards a few months back, for me to study for learning Spanish, but they have proved to be an entertaining way for my co-workers to learn English in a non-threatening format. Who would have guessed?

And, on another note, more seriously, my mental health. I hate that I have issues in this department, but, I do. Since being back in the States last November, I got to see a doctor in December. But, that was in the emergency room. They referred me to a county clinic. But, guess what? After reviewing my case, they decided I wasn't SICK ENOUGH to warrant full services from them. So, I went to a low-cost clinic, but the doctor there thought I was bipolar, and couldn't afford the medicines he wanted to prescribe me. So, he sent me back to the county clinic, and now I'm trying to find a doctor to HELP ME. I don't like BOUNCING from one doctor to another clinic, and not getting ADEQUATE CARE for my mind and emotions. I've been in a down mode for the past couple of weeks, but not ROCK BOTTOM like I've experienced before. Today I feel FINE, but, every day I never know how I'm going to feel. I'm not sure this makes any sense, but, it's part of the EBB AND FLOW of someone who struggles with depression, even if only mildly. So, if I can get the proper help I need, I should be fine. But, if I fall between the cracks, or, don't get the right kind of help I need in time, then I'll suffer needlesslly. I never want to make my friends suffer in memory of me. That would suck. For them I mean. Anyways, this is me, putting myself out there one more time.

I like living on my own. Sort of. I like where I live, in Yorba Linda. Our home feels peaceful. Our neighborhood feels safe. I like that. And, it's only about a 10 or 15 minute walk from the bus stop. My room is small, but it's all I need. And, most of all, there are people around me. So, it is the best thing for me right now. But, as I think about my life, especially my future, what is it? What do I have to look forward to? Who and where will I live as I grow old? I mean really, am I going to be 40 and 50 something, living in a rented room for the rest of my life? Is THAT what I have to look forward to? The thing I noticed that seems to trigger my suicidal thinking is of being alone. At 40. How did I get to this age, and not become married? What is so wrong and terrible with me that no one would want to marry me? These are the thoughts that bring me down.

And, I'm glad I got to share in this post. Until next time...

PS...I've got off this week 2 days, and hope to go to the beach, the sauna, who knows?

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father's Day...

It's the worst day in the world: Father's Day. I have to work. It's Sunday. I HAD been getting Sundays off, but my work schedule changed. Now, it's someone else's turn to get Sundays off~lucky for them!! So, I'm bored. Bored out of my mind. I cherish the friend times I had when I was in Korea. I don't have that now. Making time for friends seems to be so difficult, between different schedules. I like to cook on my days off. Last week I made fideo and also mexican meat with potatoes. I enjoy cutting up the vegetables and other ingredients, and seeing it all come together. I've been down in the dumps lately, and cooking was one of the highlights of my week. I am thinking about taking up the study of Korean this summer, simply as a hobby, to keep me occupied. I was also thinking of joining an adult summer reading program through the library. Until next time...