상상은 여권이 필요없는 여행이다
When I first stared becoming interested in Korean pop culture, I was intensely jealous of those who could fluently understand Korean. For me, it was torture knowing that the latest episode of my current favorite drama had aired, and yet I would have to wait days or even weeks before I could partake in it.
And yet, for native speakers, it was so easy. I was thankful for translators who practically worked around the clock, and yet had difficulty suppressing my frustration when translation seemed to take particularly long. No native speakers have a duty to translate, but I also wondered if they knew what being on one side of a seemingly insurmountable language barrier felt like.
Well, little by little, I started chipping away at that “insurmountable” barrier. I took classes. I studied on my own. I watched hours of dramas, listened to hundreds (thousands?) of songs, took notes, made flash cards, logged new grammar and vocabulary, and translated. And translated. And translated.
I still haven’t overcome that barrier, but I’m working on it. And I feel like I owe a ladder to everybody who comes after me. My skills still aren’t perfect, but if I can help just one person, I feel like my efforts will be worthwhile. So feel free to ask, request, correct, encourage, or in any other way engage in the learning process. I will be thankful.