How to Improve Your English Vocabulary

I didn’t understand most of the conversations around me when I was in France for my Christmas break. If I had learned how to read and write and pronounce words in French, I know I would’ve understood more because many French and Spanish words are lexically similar (as opposed to phonetically).

Anyway, to answer the question posed in the title, one of the most rewarding ways to increase your English vocabulary is to learn a Romance language. For example, I heard some SAT vocabulary words flying around in normal conversations in France. Laissez moi, I heard Elodie say. I understood her because of Laissez Faire. I also heard Elodie’s mom say ennui at breakfast, which I learned from Mr. Mell’s English class.

What Makes Me Feel Older

If you have read my last post, you will know that I recently became a year older (just like you).
I remember telling my friends once that I felt older when I realized that I preferred shopping for groceries to clothes. I thought that it would be fun to expand that list..

What Makes Me Feel Older

I now prefer shopping for groceries to clothes.

How Koreans Calculate Age Differently

Happy new years everyone! I was away for awhile because of my long vacation (including Christmas, New Year´s, and Three Kings). If you are Korean, you are now one year older; your Korean age is now probably two years older than your age you are familiar with.

Let me explain:

Pictures from Granada pt. I

Granada is an interesting city.
You will see Goths, tourists, potheads, musicians, and businessmen all walking down the same street.
The architecture there is also diverse and intriguing; it has been influenced by Jews, Christians, and especially the Moors.

The Moorish rule in Granada lasted for seven centuries, and left behind the most beautiful monuments I have seen in my life. I doubt I will ever see such architectural design as I did at the Alhambra and Generalife, in which most of its monuments were built in the 14th century. The following pictures were taken from this Complex.

Granada_Alhambra in the Fall

After Returning from Granada

Again and again, this same fascination.

After a weekend trip, I open my bedroom door.
The first thing I notice is the same odor.
My best guess is the smell of myself, lavender candles, vanilla lotion,
and a trace of laundry detergent from my slightly opened drawers.

The phone charger I hurriedly threw to the side, still on the floor,
still lying there helplessly, its wires tangled up and completely ignored.
Every image of my loved ones, still so young, no matter how old,
On the wall, each one tilted the same angle, just as before.

Incredible Vocals- Korean Folk Song

Click play to watch Kim Young Im Sun Seng Neem sing Jung Sun Arirang. Sun Seng Neem means teacher, and is added to her name to show respect.

Jung Sun Arirang is a famous Korean folk song that expresses han.
There is no direct translation for the word han. Perhaps intense sorrow?

It’s a pity I’ve only seen this performance on YouTube. Try to listen to it with good speakers.

The Painting that Gave Me Chills

If there is one thing you have to do while you’re in Madrid, it is to visit the Reina Sofia Museum. I had no idea how huge Guernica was until I saw it for myself. Wikipedia says that it is 3.35 m x 7.75 m. That sounds about right. As soon as I laid my eyes on that painting, I got the chills all over.

Why are North Korea and South Korea divided

A simple analogy to understand the Korean War

Imagine sharing a distressed childhood with a sibling. You were extremely close since he/she was the only family you knew, and also because you were fighting against an external force. That evil force finally disappears, but with it, also disappears unity. Your sibling acts strange and starts to make friends that you cannot stand. The distance between the two of you grow, and you feel betrayed. To get the sibling to accept your own rules so that you can become close once again, you two fight, but to the point that you almost kill each other.

Ten Favorite Spanish Words

  1. Manzana: It`s more commonly used to signify “apple,” but Spaniards also use it to signify “block,” as in a street block. Imagine saying “walk two apples, take a left, walk three more apples, and you’ll arrive at the deli.”

  2. Murciélago: The famous Lamborghini sports car is named after the Spanish word for “bat.” *Correction: Most Lamborghini cars are named after Spanish bulls. Murciélago was actually the name of one fighting bull.

Cuenca and Ciudad Encantada

On a lovely, drizzly Sunday afternoon, I went to Cuenca and Ciudad Encantada with Anais, Elodie, and Lee, some of the closest friends I have here in Spain. The two cities are very close to each other, so I recommend going to both if you ever plan on going there.

I felt so European riding in the back of a old, red Peugeot 205, and listening to my two friends talk in French. Two hours later, we arrived at Ciudad Encantada, or the Enchanted City, which has an interesting landscape due to erosion. The Júcar River, which no longer extends to the region, left behind tall rock formations that look like mushrooms.