People who haven't lived away from their home country for any amount of time tend to ask me 'isn't it hard?' My answer is usually 'sometimes.' Sometimes, it is incredibly hard to lift the spoon to your mouth to eat, to be stared at constantly, to exist constantly as alien, other, the outsider--and keep doing it day after day. That sort of 'sometimes' day doesn't happen to me very often. I tend to focus on the little joys...a student's enthusiasm, a beautiful sunset, a new Korean word. When I do that, everything else is just part of the adventure.

Today was a sometimes day. Yesterday Salsa Boy left and it didn't sink in. It was like he had just gone out on a boy's night or something. This evening I went out to a restaurant to get dinner alone. We had been there several times together and they were confused that I was alone. They asked me if someone was meeting me...the waitresses seemed perplexed by my lonesome self. I just shook my head, said '1' and asked where I should sit.I pulled out my dinner date (Much Ado About Nothing...Shakespeare, French, Spanish and Habermas the only thin gs I seem to be able to read slowly) and morosely picked at my dinner. And as miserable as it was to eat alone, I drew it out so I wouldn't have to go home. After I paid, one of the ladies who works there told me to wait a moment (at least that's what I think she said) and wrapped up a big sweet potato for me in tin foil to take home.

I have no idea what I'm going to do with the sweet potato, except maybe eat it as part of my dinner tomorrow. It was a completely random thing to give me. And yet, the stupid sweet potato cheered me up, put a smile on my face and helped pull me out of my funk. I'm still lonely but people are looking out for me and tomorrow will be another day. Tomorrow, I will not let my plans consist of cleaning my bathroom and reading. I'm letting myself be dragged to an open mic night. I've ranted enough about this sort of thing here. With a couple of drinks, I won't mind the off key notes and the company will be good.