Things I have learnt recently


Things I have learnt recently

  1. I have too many different passwords. Holy crap, it gets annoying.
  2. It’s impossible to read a 700 page novel with a cat lying on one of your arms. Especially if it’s a novel not worth reading.
  3. Looking through old pictures is so lovely. I think the Team Hwaiking day was one of the best in my life. Fatigue and illness just vanish if you’re having a good time (to some extent).
  4. The treasure at the end of the rainbow is worth the trek.
  5. I haven’t learnt enough recently. Teach me!

미운 오리 쌔기

(English translation is below)
언제 우리 아기가 태어났잖아요… 우리 어린이 이름은 ‘릴리’라고요. 예쁜 이름이죠? 근데 우리 아기가 태어났을 때, 릴리가 너무 못 생겼어요. 얼굴이 정말 파리하고 몸이 온통 피투성이였어요. ‘이 소녀… 정말로 우리 아기야?’여보라고 했어요. ‘릴리이야?’
저는 조용히기 누워 있었어요.
‘우리한테 다른 사람의 아기가 못 생겨야 되.’ 여보라고 했어요. ‘근데 우리 아기는…  우리한테 우리 아기를 잘 생기 것 같아죠? 아닌가?’
‘응 맞아…’
그 때, 저는 산만했어요. 저는 계속에서 문에 져다봤어요. 간호사하고 아기를 기다리고 있었어요. 출산하기 후에, 아직도 여보하고 저 우리 아기를 보지 않았어요.
그 때, 문을 열었어요.
우리 아기! 우리 못 생긴 아기! 근데 이 아기… 느낌이 완전히 달라요. 아기를 포대기로 감쌌어요 – 파리한 얼굴이 없고 피투성인 몸이 없어요. 우리 아기 않은데
근데 우리 간호사예요. 그리고 제 침대에 걷고 있었어요.
‘크리스탈 씨, 아기가 여기에 있어요!’ 그 간호사가 저에게 아기를 줬어요.
‘그… 그래요?’
아기를 손으로 쥐었어요. 그 아기가 너무 아름다웠어요. 아기가 행복한 것 같아요.
‘그렇지. 우리 아기야. 우리 릴리야.’ 여보라고 했어요.
아기의 이름 들었으면, 아기가 그게 미소를 짓었어요.

The Ugly Duckling
You know when our baby was born? We called her Lily. It’s a pretty name, right? But when I delivered her, she was really ugly. Her face was too pale and her body covered in blood. “This girl… is she really ours?” Honey said. “Is it really Lily?”
I quietly lay on my back.
“Sure, other people’s babies should look ugly to us.” Honey said. “But our baby… to us, she should look handsome, right?”
“Yeah, you’re right…”
At that time, I was distracted. I was constantly staring at the door. I was waiting for the nurse to bring my child back in. Since Lily’s delivery, Honey and I had still not seen our child.
Just then, the door opened.
Our baby! Our ugly baby! But this baby… the feeling was completely different. The baby was swaddled in a blanket – no pale features, no bloody body. It can’t be our child, I thought…
But it was our nurse. And she was walking towards my bed.
“Crystal, here’s your baby!” The nurse handed the child to me.
I took Lily. She was beautiful. She looked happy.
“Right. That’s our baby. Our Lily.” Honey said.
At the sound of her name being called, Lily burst into a smile.

This was the first Korean short story I wrote… it sounds so silly and simple in English, doesn’t it? It probably sounds the same in Korean, for that matter. Hopefully my short stories will also improve in English as my Korean gets better. Please let me know if I’ve made any mistakes in Korean and English alike!
If you need a laugh, copy and paste the Korean into Google Translate and get the English translation!

It’s been a while.

Wow. When I said I was busy and wouldn’t be updated my blog for a while, I didn’t expect it to be such a long break. I feel like AuzzieGamer right now (though unlike him, I’m sure no one really missed me).

I’ve finished my degree and have actually been taking a break from writing these past couple of months. It’s been nice to just read and refuel after such an essay/creative writing-heavy few years. And despite the quantity of work I’ve written, I feel like I’ve stagnated as a writer these past couple of years. Hopefully I’ll get out of my rut soon, since nothing beats writing as a creative outlet for me.

In the mean time, I thought I’d post reviews of some of the books I’ve been reading. I’m actually completing the Around the World in 80 Books challenge I found on Goodreads, so thought it’d be fun to document my experience. It’s been slow going what with the end of university and finding time between web development, learning Korean and work, but I think taking it at my own pace is best. I’ve spent the past three years speed-reading – now it’s time for a break.

Since I’ve already read a few books for a few different countries, I’ll be writing the reviews for them over the next few weeks (actually, looking back on this post, I think that’s a little ambitious. I would say over the next few months, I’ll be trying to get back to blogging regularly, so reviews might be slow). I’m starting where I live – in England – and moving out. The main rule I’m following is that I can’t jump around to different countries but must act as though I’m travelling in Jules Vernes’ time, so either to the next nearest country or by boat to another continent. The author must also be from the country in question and the book must be set in that place too. If it is a fantasy world, I think the place defaults to the author’s home country.

I read Never Let Me Go by Ishiguro for England. Stay tuned for my thoughts in the coming weeks.


Wow, I drafted this post a long time ago. Times have moved on, and though I am not writing as much as I used to, I have been doing some creative writing in Korean. I’ve found that it is easier to think of new, fresh ideas in a different language, plus it’s been great as a method for practising Korean. So I thought I’d post the (very short) stories here, in both Korean and English. If anyone knows Korean, I would love corrections and feedback… actually, even for the English version, I would also love corrections and feedback!

Here’s to 2016!


I feel the need to write a blog rumbling in the pit of my stomach, but alas! I cannot acquiesce.

In case any of you have been wondering, university exam period is almost upon me. That, coupled with a creative writing assignment, have made it really difficult for me to post on here. Hopefully in a month, I’ll have tons of free time to frolic in! But for the time being, this is me:

I could be behind those stacks of books and you'd never know... This photograph belongs to wonderlane

I could be behind those stacks of books and you’d never know… This photograph belongs to wonderlane


Hope you’ve all had a lovely month!

“Art enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.”

This was created by Wu Lei, an artist from folkculture on eBay.

I am now the proud owner of this beautiful piece of art! It was really serendipitous the way I found it; having had enough of Etsy’s extortionate prices, I simply typed in “Art” on eBay and this was fifteen minutes away from the end of its bidding war. So I bid in the last fifteen seconds and here we are.

I swear, though, while I’m watching the time count down on an eBay auction, the fight or flight instinct kicks in and my heart begins to race like crazy.