Okay, maybe my situation is not as hopeless as Éponine’s in Les Misérables (Yes, I’m a huge theater/musical fan), but I couldn’t resist using some of the lyrics from “On my own” to introduce this post.

Today, my über-awesome language partner left for a two-week trip around Europe so for the time being I’m on my own again. While I’m sure I’ll miss speaking Korean on an almost daily basis, this also means that I will finally have time for reading and watching dramas. Our sessions are usually so intense that my head is spinning by the end of each one and I therefore have little energy to embark on Korean reading when I’m finally home.

But of course, he has left me with a ton of homework to do while he’s away. On the more relaxing side, I’m instructed to watch all of the drama “별에서 온 그대”, which is available with full Korean subs on Viki. According to my LP there are lots of useful expressions to be learned, and I must say that having watched just the first episode yesterday taught me a lot of interesting phrases and vocabulary. Having spent most of my Korean learning hours studying with textbooks and other “formal” material, the word 계집 (chick – said about a girl) was definitely new to me. I’ll look forward to learning a lot more of these expressions so my Korean hopefully will be more natural when we meet again in a couple of weeks.

In his absence I will also review my textbooks, and practice the reading parts of my TOPIK preparation book. We practiced together with this book on Sunday, and I was relieved to feel that my speed and comprehension had both increased since I last studied with this book over the summer holidays.

This Sunday we also watched the Korean movie 암살 (Assassination) together. We watched it without subtitles, and I must say that it was incredibly hard for me to follow it. If it hadn’t been for his helpful recaps every 10 minutes I would not have understood much. The movie is about a group from the Korean liberation army who plot to assassinate the Japanese governor general. It takes place in 1933, so naturally the language is a bit old-fashioned. Nonetheless, I really enjoyed it, and whenever I find it with English or at least Korean subtitles I will be sure to watch it again. The funny thing actually was that a significant part of this movie was in Japanese and therefore texted in Korean. As long as I could read the Korean subtitles I had no troubles understanding, but listening to the Korean dialogue on its own was very challenging indeed.

So to summarize, my goals for the next two weeks are:

  • Watch ALL of 별에서 온 그대 while taking plenty of notes
  • Finish the reading part of 3 past TOPIK papers and learn the new vocabulary
  • Reread my Advanced Intermediate 2 Klear textbook
  • Perfect my speech for the contest at the end of the month and send a voice message of me reciting the speech to my LP every day.
  • Listen to Korean podcasts/audiobooks whenever possible

할 수 있어요! 화이팅!

By the way, Les Misérables (레미제라블) is also extremely beautiful in Korean. Enjoy this lovely 10 minute medly from the Korean ensemble. You may of course also feel free to enjoy the very fine Korean Marius.

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