Monday, July 9, 2012

We can get used to this, Mom.

Zane woke me up our first morning in South Korea with this:  "I know you were sad last night, but we can get used to this, Mom."  He kissed me on the forehead and scooted out the room.  I know he's right, so I got up and got moving.  Tre had already taken him for a walk to see the school and the neighborhood before Quade and I even woke up.  I fix the fam our first breakfast...toast with peanut butter and strawberry jelly with orange juice and potato chips.  Breakfast of champions!  With no coffee, I take an Aleve with some orange juice and get busy.

Apparently, the family who lived here before us had girls.  Zane's room is decorated with peel and stick flowers and butterflies.  He says he's man enough to leave them up, but peels them off anyway.  Quade's room has tiny Disney princess stickers on the doors and windows.  He grumbles and wastes NO time getting them peeled away and ceremoniously thrown in the trash.  Both of their door latches have tape over them so that the girls couldn't lock their doors from the inside.  This is smart, of course with small children.  My children are older, independent, and trustworthy.  So, of course, I rip off the tape.

Of course, I start organizing the kitchen.  Tre goes for a run so that he can learn the lay of the land for an outing for us later.  He's tasked with trying to find a market that sells toilet paper, since we have none.  The kids are tasked with getting their clothes unpacked.  Both of them seem to decide that they don't have enough space for clothes and have me come investigate only to find both of my older, independent, and trustworthy children have prioritized their Legos and PSPs on shelves and in drawers over their socks and underwear.  Mom solves the problem because she is sooo smart!

With the kitchen organized, I get out the items I brought with us.  A years supply of deodorant, lotions, razors, etc., along with the spices we use all the time in cooking.  Toothpaste exploded all over one bag of bathroom supplies and taco seasoning exploded all over the spices in another.  I'm cleaning away, Quade is playing a game on his computer, and Zane is peacefully humming the theme from Halo in his room with the door closed.  I hear him rummaging through his newly christened Lego drawer for the perfect pieces for this latest creation.

After finally cleaning Crest and taco off all the items, the kitchen is complete.  All other items are neatly stored.  I head to the bedroom to start unpacking my clothes.  I have 2 suitcases of my own and have other things distributed in several other 'community' suitcases to go through.  Tre's still out and about, so I have the pick of 3 dressers. (We've already decided he needs the bigger of the 2 closets in this house as always...luv ya honey.)

All of a sudden, Zane yells, "Hay!  Let me out!" and is fiercely wiggling the door knob.  We try everything.  It won't budge.  I'm thinking, "Great, we're three floors up.  There's bars on the back windows.  The door comes all the way to the floor, so I can't even pass him a grilled cheese let alone a phillips to unscrew the door."  This is all so Campbell! Quade and I begin laughing.  And we laugh some more.

Zane doesn't seem to think it's as funny as we do.  Tre walks in as I pick up the phone to dial our friends from the business office. answer...Andrew..finally picks up.  He's obviously stifling a laugh as he says, "Can't he just turn the knob and unlock it?".  No.....we kinda tried that.  Afterall, he is older, independent, and trustworthy!

~I'll insert here that Tre did find toilet paper, but only 30 rolls which is difficult to carry whilst running, I guess!  Thank goodness my mother-in-law Karen gave us 20 travel packs of Kleenex she bought for $0.80! Go Karen!~

Anyway, Andrew dispatches Kwancho, another guy from the business office, who lives closer to us.  He heads to the school to get our house keys.  Since our front door has a key pad, they weren't in any rush to get them to us the night before, but now it appears to be a rushable situation.  He arrives at 9 a.m. to save the day.  He is obviously Korean, but says he's from Australia, and hollers through the door, "I'm going to get you out champ!"  He tries like 20 keys til he finds the right one.  And, in true Campbell fashion, it doesn't unlock the door.  We try a credit card.  Still no go.  Kwancho decides the only way to get champ out is to break down the door.  And he does!  The latch ended up in about 12 pieces on the floor and Zane is sitting on his bed, eyes wide as this Korean-Aussie busts through his door.

I guess...the tape Mom peeled off the door this morning... left the latch pretty stuck to the door frame... (Mom slinks unseen from the room stage left)

It's only 9:30 a.m.

We have Kwancho show us how to use the microwave and how to turn on the hot water.  It has an on/off switch in the living room.  You turn it on 5 minutes before you need to shower, set the temperature (remember it's in Celsius) and lookie there....  Hot water!  The idea is to conserve energy.  The key is for my 3 boys to remember to turn said power button off after they get their squeaky clean bodies out of the shower.  What would they do without me???

The rest of the day is thankfully uneventful.  Tre comes home and reports that he found a market southeast of here. (Thanks to our handy-dandy Google maps).  He even found the illustrious Emart that we've been told of.  It seems to be quite a walk, but doable.  Tomorrow.   Sunday.

By evening, the house is unpacked and I've got cabin fever. I hang the load of laundry up to dry...did I mention we don't have a dryer?  Breathe in...breathe out....  We find 3 English speaking movie channels and the boys get settled in.  There's an A/C unit in the living room and the master bedroom, so they are nice and cool, but the rooms are stuffy.  Tre and I open Zane's window and head out for a walk.  He found a Family Mart, a small convenience store, a few blocks away.  They have Pepsi.  Caffine.  My friend.

It's around 7 when we get home.  Zane falls asleep in his room despite the stuffy.  Quade drags his mattress into the living room and is quickly out cold.  I can't even concentrate on my book...Little Men.  Yes, Mother, I'm reading it now, too.  You're welcome.  I know I should have read it 30 years ago.  But not tonight.

I'm beginning to get used to this.


  1. I loved reading this. Thank you for letting us live through the Campbell's.

  2. How exciting! I can't wait for more to come!