Thursday, July 1, 2010

Living with Less

You might be thinking that I am going to write about being frugal, living on a budget or even how to spend less and save more. Well, I'm not. We have been living in South Korea for almost a month now and I must say, I am getting used to living with less. Yes, at this time we have less stuff in our apartment since our HHG (house hold goods) have not arrived, but that is not what I am talking about either.

We are living in an area where previously, families where not allowed to join their soldiers on their tours. They don't have the same type of programs, childcare, youth groups etc that they have in the other posts or areas here in Korea. They also have smaller commissaries (grocery stores) and PXs (similar to Walmart without all the food).

In the US when you go to the grocery store, you have so many options of toothpaste, cereal, soup, etc. In our little commissary here, I am having a hard time finding products that I am used to buying in the states. And if I happen to find what I am looking for, the price is not what I am used to paying. Usually it costs much more.

The other day I went to get my husband deoderant and there were 6 options to choose from at the store. Not six different brand names, but six different products. Unlike Walmart, where there would proabably be over 25 different products available, and that is just men's deoderant.

I am learning to adjust how I do things in regard to cooking because I don't readily have what I did before. There is a bigger commissary in the city of Seoul, about 1- 1/2 hours away but it is not a convienent place to go to since we only have our little hooptie car and need to squish everyone in for the long ride.

I am reminded of those who have chosen to be missionaries in foreign countries. At least I have access to US products (through the commissary or PX) and things that are familiar to me, while those who are missionaries or move overseas to teach do not have that option. They are really sacrificing. I was speaking to a friend the other day who told a story about the wife of a school teacher living overseas. The one thing she really missed was graham crackers. How simple a thing to miss.

What things in your life can you give up or do without? Are you so accustomed to the finer things of life that you could not do without, should the economy or life dictate otherwise? I think I had taken for granted certain things that we have in the US. Living overseas for two years will definitely change my perspective on things.

1 comment:

Cami said...

Very nice post. I agree with you 100%. Things are sure hard to find. It is easy to take things for granted in the USA when you have so many choices all of the time.