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Published: August 26th 2008
looking up the valley towards school and home
#14-LAST DAYS-ODDS AND ENDS
It is almost time to leave Korea now, so here are a few final mixed photos. Some are old ones as well.
My final trips were around Daegu city area of Mount Palgongsan and in the city centre where I took a few street and park scene photos. I also walked around the village and school area and took heaps more photos-as usual.
Our Korean friend ‘Big Brother’ took Belinda and I on a car trip around Daegu one Saturday. Daegu City is surrounded by a ring of mountains, which makes it colder in Winter and hotter in Summer. Luckily I live on the outside of this ring or ‘caldron’. It is a beautiful drive from my village over Mount Palgongsan (1192 Metres) on the northern ‘rim’ into Daegu. There is military radar station at the highest point, (see blog #7)which you can see from both my village and Daegu city.
From the Daegu side, you can visit temple complexes and get closer to, (but not visit) the radar station via cable car.
We walked up to one temple on an extremely hot and sweaty day. At the temple got stuck in thunder
Famous triad Buddha cave,two kilometers away
storm, which was quite pleasant. We did’nt even mind getting soaked walking back to the car.
Overall with driving around thru maple avenues, tourist villages, brass museums, Huge Japanese made lake, and finishing with dinner and movie, it was quite a pleasant day.
It may be my last major outing in Korea and it was good to finish it with someone who knows the area and has pride of his country. Big Brother is one of the “Recommended Bloggers” on my homepage and has interesting articles and photos about living in Korea.
Maybe I am out of touch, but the fashion here seems very different to back home.
I always wondered why green and pink colors (as in traditional dresses) are always used together. But now I see that they are the colors of spring (with the new leaf growth and blossoms). Also platform high- heel shoes, very large wrap-around sun visors seem to be very popular. Men seem to like wearing very pink shirts. Couples wear matching shirts with matching slogans. Bath towels (they are the size of tea towels here) are often given as gifts to commemorate event or place.
Sometimes people, even kids,
women and old people wear suggestive and sometimes very rude tee-shirts. I am sure they don’t realize; but how do you tell them? Bad English (called Konglish) is very common here. Sometimes the quotes are quite innocent, confusing and thought provoking such as “Love is the pink of all sweet things”. They are always interesting to read, but leave me scratching my head.
THINGS I WILL MISS ABOUT KOREA
It has been god here and although I have had problems with the food , privacy and transport basically, it has been a very positive experience and I will come back. The helpfulness and friendliness of the people has been incredible and I have not had any major ’people problems’.
Sometimes it’s the small things you remember like
• Bank staff bringing me a cup of coffee at the ATM in a bank
• Stranger in car offering to give me their umbrella to me on drizzly day
• Students bowing or giving small gifts
• Strangers bowing to me from across the road
• People bowing to me while driving
There are many other things I will miss about Korea as well, but these where unique.
shade cloth over sunhouse in summer; a very good idea.
LAST DAYS AT SCHOOLS
The last days at teaching were not hard but confusing just the same. It seems like the students were still talking more Korean than English, but I hope they learnt something. They always apologize for talking English (even when they KNOW I can’t understand them) . Anyway they are all good kids and it was fun teaching or trying to teach them and hard to get annoyed at them on the last day.
I will miss the schools and the teachers as well; the people at my house and village too. All the best to the other two ‘local Foreign teachers, Belinda and Wil as well. I will never forget my time here.
I feel very lucky to have lived and worked in this beautiful part of the world as well. At the moment it is a living, working village where you hardly ever see the old people working. What will happen after they go? I hope this village continues on, even if just as a tourist village.
It is exactly one year ago today when I arrived.
In two days I will go to Vietnam for a holiday, then home to
with Australian teacher, Belinda and Korean teacher, Harry
NEXT BLOG -VIETNAM
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