I’ve known since May that I will be making the move to South Korea to play for IBK in my first full season abroad, but despite trying to prepare as much as I could the past few months, I was still left with the anticipation of what was to come. And after a plane ride across the globe, I’m here!
I was picked up by my staff and my lovely interpreter Erica from the airport and we made our way to Suwon, South Korea where I’ll be living and playing for the next 8 months. The 13 hour time change certainly had me in a daze and I’m lucky they were patient with me making the adjustment. I had my first full day of practice on day 3 and I certainly got a glimpse of what the Korean training is like, and when they said it’s tough, they weren’t kidding. I was introduced to new systems I have never done before and although it felt like I forgot how to play volleyball at times, I started to get a hang of it. After all, in order to be great at something new you have to be willing to suck at it for a while. We have an off day tomorrow and hopefully I’ll be able to move out of bed to start unpacking.
The team and I are lucky enough to have two fabulous women cook us full meals for lunch and dinner that are waiting for us after our practice sessions. I cannot describe to you how yummy everything is! Seriously if you haven’t had Korean food before, find some. Right now and go get it. I’m so stoked to eat it everyday.
My teammates have already shown that they are the nicest people, despite the ever obvious language barrier. The smiles, and high fives make a world of difference when your head is already spinning. I want nothing more than to make them proud this season.
Oh, and they pronounce my name Lijeu and I think it is absolutely adorable.