Incredibly curious about what a Korean Fortune Teller could offer me, I eagerly climbed the stairs of an unassuming building in a local Korean neighbourhood. I stepped onto the third floor of my future to see her. Behind the rented room of 306, destiny was waiting to be unwrapped and exposed to me. I pressed my finger to the buzzer. The door slowly opened and with her glowing smile, the Korean Fortune Teller welcomed me into her world. This is what she told me…
1. I’m in the wrong profession
When I was fresh faced and high on the magical innocence of childhood, I endeavoured to make my parents lots of money. I can’t quite remember what profession was burning in my mind at this time but it was certainly creative. I was going to be an artist, a high class pianist or some enchanting dancer.
Fast forward thirteen years and my Dad told me there was no way I was going to Art School: ‘Can’t make any money that way’. By the time I had finished University and trained my ass off, I was a psychologist. That lasted four years.After a whirlwind reality check, I threw in the towel and became an English Teacher, Teaching English Abroad. That’s been rocking and feeding my travels for the last five years!
Yet still, the Korean Fortune Teller was insistent that I’m in the wrong career: ‘You need to be playing music, teaching music, experiencing music’. Maybe she’s right. This inner desire has reared its head throughout my travels. I’ve been a travelling rock drummer, been requested to tutor peoples’ musical abilities and exhibited the art of seduction on stage with burlesque in Shanghai. Just a couple of months ago, I was volunteering with Workaway to paint inspiring pictures on the walls of a hostel in Taiwan. Teacaketravels is also now 10 months old! I may not be Nic Firth or Beethoven but I’m finally fulfilling my needs and the Korean Fortune Teller had her eye on that for sure.
2. I’m stubborn
‘Stubborn’ is a nice way of putting it. The Korean Fortune Teller got straight to the point and said ‘difficult’. She’s right. I’m an only child clasping onto the passion of travelling the whole of Asia. No man dare stand in my way because I’m finding I severely lack romantic relationship negotiation skills. I’m still working on having a successful love life whilst travelling but there is hope…
3. I’m going to get married when I’m 38 and he’s going to be considerably younger than me
I’ve always been a flirt. My parents sent me to an all-girls school when I was eleven because they knew what I was capable of. I’m not ashamed to confess that I love men. I always used to date the older variety but slowly but surely, younger guys seem to be digging the Teacake. If a beautifully crafted young specimen of a male wants to get in on this craziness, come on over here toy boy.
4. I was going to get in trouble in 2013
2013 was the year that I travelled solo all the way through Japan, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. I saw the Korean Fortune Teller in February and her words of warning stuck with me throughout. In March, I was driving by myself through the fields and dirt roads of Pai in Thailand. I carefully squeezed my brakes as I got to the final challenge of my destination: a towering hill with a promised temple of beauty perched on top of it. I revved my little engine with full intent and willed it to claw its way to the top. Woefully, it just didn’t have the strength. Trying to encourage it a little further, I put my feet down, digging my heels into the sand and burnt a perfectly shaped circle as big as a digestive biscuit into my right foot. In the scorching sun with no water and a lack of tiger balm, the pain slowly seeped through me and I considered this predicted unlucky fate ticked off my Korean Fortune Teller list. I was wrong: Two weeks later I accidentally got pregnant. The Korean Fortune Teller knew what she was talking about.
5. I’m going to die pretty young (I guess)
I’ll never forget the expression that shot across her face. As she materialised from her calculations and laid out everything before her, her look was an unwelcome mix of alarm, surprise and confusion. I wasn’t sure what to say but as the reading came to a close, I wanted to dig deeper about that expression I’d seen. ‘Am I going to have a long life?’ I asked. ‘Mmmm…’ she said and proceeded to say different things which didn’t answer much at all. ‘I feel you’re not telling me something’ I said. Her response? ‘Sometimes I see things but I cannot reveal everything’. I left with my curiosity well fed but an unpleasant aftertaste lingering in my mouth. Maybe some things are just better left unknown that not even a Korean Fortune Teller will tell you. You make your own destiny after all…right?
What style was this Korean Fortune Teller?
Saju! Originating from super old China and highly popular in Korea today, Saju translates as ‘The Four Pillars as Destiny’. What are these wondrous pillars of destiny? They’re the year, month, day and time that you were born. Endless calculations later with a serious looking book, your Korean Fortune Teller will tell you what life has in store for you (or maybe they’re just a good storyteller).
Read about her fortune telling experience in Thailand