I just celebrated another birthday. Boy, does time fly. I can't believe I've already celebrated two birthdays in the Motherland!
Whenever people ask me how old I am, I always have to pause before I respond. It's not because I'm trying to conceal my age or anything. I just need a moment to remember. I know this makes me sound like an idiot, but sometimes I forget how old I am.
When I first arrived in the Motherland, I'd present my age according to the American calendar. Since then, I tell people my age according to the Korean counting system. In the Motherland, they count the time you spent in your umma's womb and round up, meaning you're one when you're born. Then, at the turn of the lunar new year, they add on another year. This means that when I was 25 in the Homeland, I was considered 27 in the Motherland. Now, I am 26 in the Homeland, but am still 27 and will be 28 after the new year. I think. I'm not sure. It's all so confusing!
In any case, I've passed the mid-twenties. Yikes!
Koreans will inevitably ask for your age because a) they want to figure out if you're date-able b) they need to know if you're their senior and thus, speak to you using formal terms. Rather than fast forwarding your age a year or two, it's best to just say the year of your birth. Koreans, after all, are good at math :)
I had to work on my birthday, but I didn't mind (especially since we had a really nice cake from Passion 5 Bakery). Also, as a late August baby, I'm used to starting school on my birthday. The girls in my class wrote me a little note, while the boys ignored the white board as if they could not believe that their teacher had an actual birthday, and was not in fact a escapee from the gates of hell.
I know that they ignore me because they secretly love me. ㅋㅋㅋ.