After leaving Korea and moving to The Netherlands for my studies, I finally had the life “alone” that I was so deeply wishing for when I lived with my family in Korea. For the first two years, living abroad, I shared common spaces with two roommates from France and Greece. Since then I have been living alone in a typical student studio for about three years. The two houses I lived in here have had a common feature; both have come furnished. They resemble a hotel with most of the furniture already installed, including a bed, a desk, a chair, a stand, etc. As a foreigner living in The Netherlands, I have thought of myself as a sort of nomad; never knowing when to leave or where to go next, so it has led to a mindset of minimizing my belongings while staying here. In that sense, the two furnished houses were the best choice for me. However, I soon began to feel unconsciously uncomfortable in my individual space, and it first came from the height of the furniture. The furniture in the house I live in has been made to fit the physical conditions of the Dutch, the world‘s tallest nation. I am a woman who is 155 centimeters tall. My awkward life in The Netherlands resembles a gigantic person struggling to adapt to Lilliputian's world in ‘Gulliver’s Travel‘, written by British writer Jonathan Swift. [figure 1]
I’m a lilliputian person who lives in a Gulliver’s world.

To be more specific about the uncomfortable situations I have found myself in within my home here, I find myself needing to tiptoe to take the plates and ingredients out of the kitchen shelf. When washing my hands in the bathroom sink, water splashes on my chest and my feet do not fully touch the floor when I sit on the toilet. The top and tallest compartment of the bookshelf next to the desk has been rarely used for three years. These experiences do not fit at all with the memories that I have accumulated and permeated into my body in my 23 years of living in Korea. In addition, the floor of my Dutch house is covered with carpet, while on the contrary, most houses in Korea are covered with linoleum. This is due to Korea having a strong culture of living barefoot in the house, and so houses are made with floors that have a flat material that is easy to clean. My body still remembers the habit of living barefoot indoors, while here the texture of carpet on my soles gives me an awkward sense of distance between me and my space.

In order to create some intimacy into my space I have found some things to have helped. I started bringing things which carry an emotional attached to me into my space. It is the kitchenware used by mother, food ingredients sent by my grandmother, books that I read while in Korea, letters from my family and friends, and the same indoor slippers used at my parent’s house, etc. As a “nomad,” it can be difficult to change the physical structure and properties of the space; however, I have found that it is possible to reproduce past memories within a new space by integrating things that evoke emotions and memories into it. If so, can the space that I am pursuing now exist? Or isn’t it the desire to unconsciously idealize the hideout that I made in my childhood to embody its memories and senses that I am after?