Friday, February 19, 2010

Anyong ha seyo!

Remember that game that we used to play in the computer lab in elementary school where you had to identify the continents of the world? The hands down best part of that game was finding Asia. The MS-DOS would boom out 'ASIA!!' with both both 'a' sounds stretched out in it's low robotic voice. Well hover your mouse over my head and double click because I'm in ASIA!!

(Side bar: that game would lead me to believe that Europe was always on the right hand side of North America, which was confusing when we moved on to the Earth is Not Flat unit. Perhaps not the best game, but definitely more educational than Dinosaur Park Tycoon.)

This is the view from my room...

...I actually don't know the name of the city we're in because every word I learn slips out of my head like a greased eel which, incidentally, was on the menu tonight. Not really, but I had raw beef and I tore a snail from it's shell with my bare teeth.
This is the view from my camera when I was standing right there. Can you count the power lines?

So far we've been getting some cultural training, with the emphasis that things are neither good nor bad, simply different. Here's an exerpt from a case study in our Counseling Book:

"Many Koreans told Martha that she had a Korean spirit, and she agreed. After her first year she decided to stay indefinitely. She married a Korean man, and slowly began to lose her Western identity. After five years Martha had given up most of her Western tendencies: she no longer vocalized her opinions; she didn't feel as independent and self-reliant as before. She didn't think these changes were positive or negative. They were just changes."
There's also a chart of how things are done:

Nuance: Anger
Korea: Showing anger is rude.
West: Showing anger is ride, but it happens.

Nuance: Elderly
Korea: Show kindness and respect.
West: May show kindness and respect at all times. May also put them on ice flows and
leave them for dead.

Nuance: Touching children
Korea: Natural expression of interest and affection.
West: Usually not done. Exceptions made for R Kelly.

Not better or worse. Just different.
Also, remember that medical test that I was worried about before? It's tomorrow. We're having chest x-rays, blood work and we can't have anything to eat or drink from midnight tonight until 8:00 tomorrow morning because I think, I think, they're also going to be preforming surgery on us. If they even dare ask me to pee in a cup after no water for eight hours I will laugh in their faces so hard I'll pee a little bit, but only dust will come out because there surely won't be any liquid in my bladder. On the bright side, there also won't be any liquid when I break down in tears. Wish me luck!

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