During our time in Korea we have been flattered to host so many friends and family. It really does fill you with love when you hear that someone wants to travel half way around the world just to hang out with you. Whilst these reunions are mostly overflowing with excitement, there is an underlying sense of despondency.

Living abroad is viewed as exotic and exhilarating, no matter where you may live; it’s the allure of the unknown. Social media has vastly aided this image, you can paint a certain picture of your life one filled with intriguing friends, thrilling parties, a stimulating job and all based in an impressive city. However, this image is often akin to a fresh slick of paint over an old crumbling wall. Of course, living abroad offers multiple amazing opportunities, but it is still just an existence filled with up and downs that comprise life.

Personally, I never broadcast my lows, so whenever a guest was expected I was concerned that they would see through the glossy paint to how plain my life really was. I felt that I was upholding the photo shopped image for not only myself, but every person who was living abroad. If my guests twigged on that my life was not a thrilling rollercoaster, the whole effigy would unravel.

However, my anxiety that flourished as each visit approached was groundless. I had forgotten the colossal thrill that Korea had filled me with when I first arrived. My own incessant picture taking has long since ceased, but Korea has still remained an unbelievably sensational place. As I watched my guests gaze in awe and snap numerous pictures of what I have grown to view as normal, I relished the fact that their fresh eyes were enabling me to view Korea as what it really is once more. It is a country that I feel truly blessed to have called home over the past 18 months, and it will always hold a special place in my heart.


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