In a country where foreign residents stand out even more so than usual, South Korea’s non-Asian expat population consists primarily of English teachers, US military, and investors. Even so, many stick around for the long haul and start noticing certain mannerisms and knowledge in themselves they never could have imagined stepping off a plane so many years ago. So how do you know when South Korea has become your home?
You forget there are prices that end in numbers besides zero.
Someone abroad tells you about the crazy weekend drinking he did, and you just think of that as a typical evening.
You stop running your fan when you sleep.
You think the cats inside of cafes are as cute as can be, while the ones outside are like tigers.
You know to find a seat or grab a handle immediately after stepping on a bus.
You think 10,000 Won is more than enough to find a place to sleep for the night.
You discover the mystery of why women smell like smoke after using a public toilet.
You ask someone’s age within two seconds of meeting them.
You know better than to try and break up a shouting match.
You’re just waiting to see how it works out for Jo Jung Suk and Hyeri. Will that ghost ever leave for good, and will they still be in love?
You’ve developed a taste for Finger Lickin’ Braised Pork Pringles.
You need time to get into uniform and prepare an elaborate meal before you go hiking.
You see lines as optional.
You don’t even bother asking someone if his glasses have lenses.
You ask your 22-year-old friend why he’s not married yet.
You really wish they would include toothpaste with that humidifier on sale…
You know the lyrics to all of Super Junior’s songs.
You think Korean kids need to study more.
You praise someone’s Korean skills after they say “hello.”
All your communication is done on KakaoTalk.
The idea of using a toilet without a trash makes you squeamish.
You lament the dearth of cafes outside of Seoul.
You think maybe Dokdo really is sacred Korean territory.
Kimchi actually starts tasting spicy.
You stop paying attention to anything coming out of North Korea.