Sound of Vitality

Blowin up Haengsin-dong. Holla!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

5 months!

I'll have been in Korea for 5 months in a couple days, if you can believe it. That means my contract is nearly half over, which is awesome. I like my job, don't get me wrong, but I don't get time off really at all. I keep asking the director when I get time off in the summer, and she always replies 'Maybe at the end of July.' That is a very Korean thing to say, I've learned. Everything is 'maybe' and the waeguks are largely kept in the dark.

I'm trying to coordinate when my brother will come visit, so 'maybe' kind of sucks. So I asked my co-teacher Joanne Teacher when we'll get time off. 'Maybe at the end of July.' 'But when will we know for sure?' I asked. 'Maybe in July.' AAAAAH! We only get one week too! It's like working a contract job in America. The recruiting company promised me 2 weeks but I've also learned that things change here, and the contracts don't really seem to mean shit to the schools. Oh well, the pay is good, I'm saving money and my wardrobe is about 300% fresher than it was in the US already. Skinny everything!

I rode my bike to Ilsan on a Sunday. It was a beautiful day - sunny and about 65. I went to the Lake Park there where there was a flower festival going on. I've never seen a park so full of people. There were Koreans everywhere walking super slow in the wrong lane on the path, stopping for no reason right in front of me, taking photos of everything, and clumped under every spot of shade hanging out. I pulled up a spot in the sun next to the lake, parked the bike, balled up my sweatshirt for a pillow and lay in the sun reading. Beautiful.

After about an hour a group of waeguks pulled up chatting loudly in American accents and sitting in a little circle picnicking. A thought flashed across my mind that I ought to ask if I could join them. I couldn't find a single friend to hang out with that day, so why not make some more friends, right? Instead I got up, brushed the grass off myself, put my stuff in my bag and stared at them as I walked off, as a couple of them stared back. Yeah, I'm getting real weird.

I walked to the big plaza by Lafesta in Ilsan, Lafesta being this big shopping area. The cats from Falun Gong were protesting Chinese torture of members with their usual array of horrifying pictures of corpses and buttholes burned by cattle prods and the like. They were also meditating en masse in the plaza listening to creepy music, so I took a picture of them with a MTB biker wandering in the foreground for good measure:


  1. I laughed my ass off to the "yeah, I'm getting weird" comment. Classic! When are you getting off in July? I was planning on visiting, not sure if you knew that.

  2. hey, send me some cool cutsey Korean stuff!