Culture shock and Indecisiveness


Travelling SE Asia without a care in the world!

After spending a year and a half in a foreign country and having just about everything in my life shaken up and tossed about like a ready-to-eat mason jar salad, I knew I would come back and have a tiny bit of cultural shock.  Luckily I got over it fast. I slipped back into the ways of the good ol’ USA all quick like – BUT, I developed a new habit I was not familiar with, indecisiveness.

On the plane

This is me having to make a decision post Korea.

I started having trouble doing simple things like which cheese did I want from the grocery store? Should I turn right or left at the next corner, and what did I want for dinner? Many times I just gave up and did not make a decision at all ( or swung over multiple lanes to change my mind at the last minute, don’t hate me, I’m still a foreigner!). This was bad. I am pretty much a live for the moment and do what makes you happy kind of person, so this indecisiveness was killing me. Just make up your mind already! Pick something!

Rock on!

Rock on, Mandi!

After discussing this with my roommate (being from the Midwest she loves to discuss things in detail for long periods of time and humors me when I want to discuss odd things like what happens when a Care Bear commits a crime in Care-a-lot or why can’t I make up my freakin’ mind!) we came to the conclusion that it probably stems from our (while I was only overseas for a year and a half, she was there for five years) lack of choices in South Korea.

Week Twenty Six

For some reason Pizza in S. Korea is marketed toward women ❤

When shopping there we were THRILLED to find just one choice of cheese, any cheese, or a pair of shoes that actually fit us, or a slice of pizza that did not have corn or sweet potato or sweet pickles on it.

Week Twenty Two

Yes, we bought up the last of them.

One of my main missions while there was to find refried beans. I didn’t care about the brand, or if they were low-fat, vegetarian, or black, I just wanted a can of freaking refried beans!  You can imagine my joy and elation when I came across the random can (in the grocery store, not on the street). It was like the sun had parted the clouds and a beam was lighting up my nirvana.

Week Seventeen

Simple choices on the shelves in Korea (and TV’s).

So you can probably see how choices might be a little bit more difficult to make now that I have so many of them. When faced with large bins of cheese choices and shelf after shelf of refried beans it’s understandable why I might look like a deer caught in the headlights.  

Week Twenty Six

One of many oddly named shops in S. Korea.

I can say that I am getting a bit better. I only spent about 20 minutes one day last week staring at the numerous shelves of hair color, and only walked back and forth to the register three times picking up and setting down bottles before finally deciding on which red color to get. Things are looking up!

30 Days of Pictures/October

Awesome zombie students.

And if you ever see me in a grocery store smiling fondly at a can of refried beans, you now know why. But if I start caressing and cooing at it. Please call for help, my mind has most likely finally broke.


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