Monday, August 23, 2010

Korea wk 1

  Though I may be more than 5,000 miles away from all my friends and family technology shrinks the distance considerabily.  I'm not as nervous being here in a country where the majority of the people I encounter don't speak my language.  It has never ceased to amaze me that amount of communication you can do with hand jestures and body language.  Other than the language barrier and indicipherable signage, life here is pretty much the same as back in California.  When it comes down to it, we all need to eat and drink, we all laugh and cry, and we enjoy our family and friends.  Too bad we couldn't teach that very simple model to our politicians and religious leaders.
  Lesson 1:  Don't plug in your American surge protector into a convertor that is plugged into a Korean surge protector... you will overload the circuit as my friend Azzurra found out.  She blacked out her room on such an experiment and like any good friend I tried to do the same.  But as for me my surge protector switch was in the off position before I plugged it in.  Once the switch went into the on position... well we both jumped.  Only plug an American power strip into a direct wall outlet!
  Lesson 2:  Buses don't drive a circular route.  The other day Azzurra, Sammy, and I rode the 51 bus out of Bundang all the way to the end of the line, where we thought it would circle back to where we originally got on.  Not the case.  It stopped at the Bus depot miles from our rooms and without emotion the hand jesture from the Bus driver translated as, "Yea, end of the line.  It's very obvious you American's don't know where you're going. Off my bus!"  Luckily Azzurra and I were there because I think Sammy would have curled into the fetal position were she would have been found days later by someone walking their dog.  We walked about a mile or so and got a Taxi back to our general area.  It won't be the last time I get lost over here... but you're never truly lost if you can find your way back.
  I'm going to try and post on this blog once, maybe twice a week.  It won't be riddled with explicit details but more a general overview on certain aspects of my year here in Korea.  I'll start writing about the school I teach at next week, since I won't start teaching my own class for a few days.


  1. Oh continue! Love reading your tale. Can I link my blog to yours?

  2. Hi from Annie, Corey's friend in Turlock. Loved this first glimpse of Korea through your eyes.

  3. Yes Corey, link away... and thank you for reading my thoughts Annie. I hope it is interesting!

  4. I'm a friend of Coreys and will be following your visit with interest since I spent a year in Korea in the early '70s.

  5. I found your post through Corey's.

    Funny, but I came very close to teaching in Korea this year. I will follow your blog closely as it still remains an option for me.

    Best wishes for a safe and awesome adventure!