Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Hometown my spring

That is the title to my favorite Korean folk song (except of course Arirang) and it is also the song I remember best :) In English it is really Spring in my/of my Hometown.

What do you say when people ask you where you are from?  I dislike this question because I never know how to answer it. For some it is really easy, but for others (like me) it isn't so straight forward. So let me ask...how do you determine "where are you from?" Is it where you were born? Is it where you lived the longest? Is it where you went to high school or elementary school? Is it where you last moved from?

When I break down my life...it gets pretty messy...
Born in "state 1" but we moved before I turned 2 years old.
Went in elem school in "state 2" but moved after 5th grade to "state 3" where I went to 6th and 7th grade.
Then moved out of the country where I went to middle school and high school.
Moved back to "state 3" and finished high school. Went to college in "state 3" also but then moved to "state 4" for 8 years, then to "state 5" for almost 2 years and now back to "state 3" for forever or until John gets fired :)

So...where am I from?
I lived the longest in state 2 but I was very little for most of that and I know tons of people who have moved when they were young and never claim to be from that place. They usually claim the place where they went to middle school or high school.
I lived the second longest in state 4. I was an adult there. I had most of my children there and it felt like "home."
Next is the foreign country. I only lived a total of 4 years of my life there but they were probably the most important - middle and high school. I have lots of friends in this situation. I went to an international school and most of my friends there went to middle and high school in Korea. Lots of them just say they are from Korea...but...have you seen me? How do I (or my friends from Australia, Sweden, Africa, Germany, Egypt) look at someone and tell them, "I am from Korea." If people ask about high school or middle school I often just say I "lived" in Korea :) Although it wasn't as long as other places, it was definitely during the most formative time and I still prefer Korean food to almost anything :) I often just say I am an egg...white on the outside, yellow on the inside cause that is what Koreans tell me I am especially after they see me eat the food :)
Next is state 3...I have lived here a long time and it too is "home" but it has always been cut into small pieces. Two years here, two years there...leave, come back, leave again, come back again, leave again, come back again...you get the point.
I most recently moved from state 5 so I should I claim that?

So...if you were me where would you say you are from? I really don't know how to answer this question. I think it is a little easier for my siblings because they at least went to all of high school and middle school here (except tys). My husband doesn't have this problem either. He only strayed from his state for 2-3 years but the rest of his life was spent there :)


There aren't too many versions of this song out there but this is a very famous Korean singer and she does a lovely version...

True folk version...


PS - this new background is for you Jahnelle...it is time again for the stars :)