Tonight I bought bleach, beer, and an ice cream. Vanilla and peanut flavoured.

It’s been shit lately, let’s be honest. My brain feels like a scrambled egg mixed with scrambled tofu. I’m shouty to the point of having vocal scratchiness that my manager will not stop pointing out. I have the beginnings of a fever. I am coming down with a cold when my cold that has been in my lungs hasn’t retreated since before the Winter Solstice, 2016.

I always think that it’s important to remind those who do not live a nomad’s life that travel isn’t all fancy. It isn’t all excitement. It isn’t all good.

Sure, Busan is beautiful and home. It feels like a home in ways Shanghai simply never did. But I find myself longing for the schedule that I had in Shanghai and the tiny smidges of respect for me as a teacher that I managed to accumulate there.

I’m irritable. I’m creatively stunted (my “Challenge Novella!” for December remains unfinished in February). I am a fair bit depressed. I am tired. I am still sick. I am still not sleeping well.

And the problem is, of course, that my tiny menial and personal problems here in Busan pale in comparison with the chaos back in the States. I asked a trusted friend recently, “Is it really as bad as it seems? It’s hard to tell from here.”

“It’s insane. Every day is a new disaster,” the friend responded.

“I would say don’t move back here. Not for a while. I don’t even recognize this country any longer.”

I feel committed to this nomadic life, and it is hard.

Not everything is bad. We have a warm apartment, which I definitely appreciate after a hard winter in Shanghai last year. We both have work. There is cheap beer (although shitty). I have a wonderful husband. I have clothes. I have a working shower and working wifi. I ate ice cream after work.

Still. Still.

My maternal grandmother passed away suddenly. My manager keeps asking me if I’m ok and touching my shoulder. I keep saying I’m ok. I’m not.

The knot in my left shoulder has extended itself into my forearm, bringing a walnut-sized lump of muscle adhesion into my lesser-used hand.

I have had a blocked right ear for two weeks, filled with fluid congestion from the never-ending-cold-of-death I suffer. I cough and cough and cough.

I have such large dark circles that my students comment on them every day.

A coworker told me that my student is “suffering” in my classes.

My feet have spots on them that are rubbed shiny by overuse.

This may be TMI, but I have a patch of eczema on my right elbow  the size of at leas three amalgamated silver dollars.

I have $37,563.79 in student loans and if I want to stay on budget, about $8 per day to feed me and my husband until payday. Which is, of course, dependent on our boss making the damn transfer on time.

But hey! There’s this livestream of kittens that I watch every evening! It’s a great distraction. 

2017 is tiring so far.

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