Seoul Searching

20150408_151007How often do you mix business with pleasure? If you become good friends with a client and you disagree about something on the pleasure field of life, you may end up loosing them as a client in the business world. It has personally happened to me.DSC_3163
For instance, you have a hair client and they love the chop and dye you create on their head. You decide to mix business with pleasure and step out from behind the chair and join them in their world. You make them mad while you’re in their world. You’ve now lost a client. It’s really hard not to mix business with pleasure in my career field. People share so much with you, as a hairstylist, that they become more than just clients. They are friends and family. I am not perfect and tend to mix business and pleasure. 20150408_142820
We’ve lived in Guam now for almost a year. I’m up against the mixing business with pleasure again. Living on the island of Guam has been a bit of a difficult transition from living life in Europe. My family has lived on an island before. My son was born in Hawaii and moving from stateside life, to island life, in 2005 wasn’t that hard of a transition. I was raising a newborn, pretty much by myself while my husband was out to sea. He was dependent on me for his needs, since we didn’t have a village to help out.DSC_3498
What has made my transition from living a life in Europe to the island of Guam difficult? A few things. My little boy has grown up and needs me for snuggle time at night, clean clothes, food in his belly, a shuttle to extracurricular activities, guidance, advice and love. But for the most part, he just wants to be with his friends now or do guy things with dad. Big change from the last time we were living on an island.20150405_123914
Well, since I finished writing my first book and the options of exploring new lands so frequently have decreased, I decided to go back to work behind the chair full-time, well Monday through Friday 8-3. I always want to be available for my son after school to help him with his homework or pick him up if he isn’t feeling well at school. I leave the weekend time reserved for family. My career as a Cosmetologist, and the fact that I am working from home, provides the flexibility for me to do just that.DSC_3391
Unfortunately, I had to put my life behind the chair on hold for a period of time when we arrived on Guam. One would think that while living on a tropical island that I would be laying on the beach everyday, sipping cold drinks, working on my tan, getting in tip-top shape, learning how to scuba dive or just chillin’, while my kid is at school and my husband is at work.20150408_142708
Sounds like a great plan. But I can’t seem to make that my reality. I feel good about life when I am productive or contributing something to society. But the productivity in which I wanted to go for this season of life, was shut down, temporarily. I went through an incredibly long process in order to do what I love, hair, out of my home.20150408_153104
I was finally approved to offer salon and spa services out of my home on April 15, 2015. We arrived on the island of Guam on June 23, 2014. So it took a while and it had my soul a bit worked up. I was wondering if I should even pursue hairdressing while living on the island.DSC_3237
Now, I am confronted with the whole business with pleasure thing again. Where you make friends and they find out you’re a hairdresser? To mix or not to mix?20150409_164952
A week before my business was finally approved my son and I joined my husband on a business with pleasure trip to South Korea.  A little “Seoul Searching” was in order before part of my livelihood was restored. 20150407_104653
It was during Spring Break 2015. We flew from Guam to Seoul, South Korea and took the high-speed train to Changwong for the Jinhae Cherry Blossom Festival after my husband wrapped up business.20150408_143637
For the first time in all of our travels, I documented this trip on Instagram and will share an album of our time at gibsonchop on Facebook. This was the first exploration that I’ve taken every photo with a smart phone. Can you believe we lived almost four years in Europe and didn’t have a modern phone? Yes. It is true. I took all my photos with a DSLR made by Nikon while living in Europe. But this trip, I surrendered the big camera to my husband and shot only with my phone. I loved it!  20150410_153116
Anyhow, today, I am going to share with you a few things to do if you visit South Korea. Well, not the business part of it, the pleasure part. Let’s start in Seoul. One thing that is really neat to see is the changing of the guard at the Gwanghwamun Gate.DSC_3036
It’s about ten minutes long and takes place three times a day starting at 11.  20150405_110850
We were headed into the Gyeongbokgung Palace but were surprised with the changing of the guard before entering the grounds at the palace.
DSC_3014Two other things are on my list if you only have a couple of days in Seoul. Go to a market. We went to two different markets. The Namdaemun Market, where we found Korean Ginseng root all jarred up with its wonderful benefits that are extensive and all of my health nut friends would love it. So here I share a photo of the roots for all those who are into holistic health.20150409_201255
The Gwangjang Market is where we got our adventure on. This woman of the market, called an Ajumma in Korean, force-fed us some yummy bits before we knew what they even were.  Nice to not have food allergies in these situations. A wonderful dining experience with only hand gestures used for communication, since she only spoke Korean.20150409_205909When you visit the Gwangjang Market, that has been around for over a hundred years, you can walk up to any little food stall and plop your rear-end on one of the heated benches and mingle with the locals over a hot meal. It is one place I recommend if you visit or live in this country. Loved it!20150409_204736
 So if you have a kiddo or kiddos and they are accompanying a parent on a work trip over spring break, you have to make sure they are having fun, right? At least for one afternoon. When we were flying to Seoul, we were sitting in front of a child on the plane who was hacking up his lungs and had not been taught to cover his mouth. Germs were floating all through the cabin of the plane and I had a feeling one of us, if not all three, would come down with something. Well, needless to say we now know why many in Asia travel with the beloved mask. Our son, had to wear one while on the metro and plane, after he caught the cold. His cough was unreal.DSC_3504
 He spread the love onto me later on as we returned to Guam and it put me down for over a week with strep throat. It was a nasty, nasty cold! But who cares about the mom of the home, you just buck up, be strong and carry on.20150407_103335
When you explore by plane, metro, high-speed train, foot and taxi in a city with millions of people, the germy elements of the big city, can really drag you down. My son managed to have a good time, despite being ill. We made a trip to Lotte World Amusement park so he could get his thrill on with some rides. While waiting in line for the tea cups to spin us round and round, we met a group of girls who hammed it up for the camera.20150410_134913Our time in South Korea went fast. We tried a list of foods, a few for the first time and others were welcome repeats. What was really wonderful about the trip was that we were able to visit during the Cherry Blossom Festival going on in Jinhae, South Korea.20150408_150556
Lots of photos from this trip and again I will upload them on the FB page. My son and I are getting ready to leave the island of Guam for the summer and we’re looking forward to spontaneous travel and visiting with friends and family. The “Seoul Searching” continues… 20150405_110741

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *