Jonathan's world trip travel blog

 

 

 

My friend Soo!

Insadong

 

Insadong

Working on my Family name/Artist's stamp, hand carving into stone.

The artist himself working on my stamp

 

just like the design

 


So you know this is my second attempt at this one and how does the song go? What a difference a day makes? That and always save when you are working on a dodgey computer. .

When I last did this it was pretty emotional, the thought of leaving a country that I had just found my place in, finally starting to feel comfortable in the country and myself but also thinking that I would probably never go back. There were all these emotions welling up inside of me and I found myself thinking that this was way to quick, way to soon to be leaving. Was I ready to go? No, I knew that, but my ticket was up and I knew I had to leave in a few hours. To be honest I was a bit of a wreck, listening to Marvin Gay's "I'm Going Home" and "Everybody wants to Mold Clay?" was killing me. Listeen to it, you'll understand.

Well things have changed and now I know that I will be going back to Korea to see what else there is in the country that I was born in. I had only spent 10 days there and it took me that long to get into a groove of sorts. When I first arrived, there was Elizabeth, a Swedish adoptee and someone that I could commiesirate with and then there was Shin (my case worker) and Soo (a friend from University) who helped me with those little ism's that you need to know whenever you are in a foreign country. If it wasn't for these friends I don't think my time there would of been even half as rewarding as it was.

Although I may not of seen as many cultural sites as Elizabeth (god bless her, she was motivated) I do feel though that I got a good sense of what the present day culture is like. Seoul is a country that has gone thru so many changes in the last 100 years that it has all the aspects of old and new. It is a country that was occupied by the Japanese from 1905 to 1945, then went thru it's own internal war (the Korean War) from 1950-1954 and then massive economic growth from the 60's on. This growth has brought with it 8 lane blvd's, modern architecture, skyscrapers and Starbucks but still retains many neighborhoods and small back streets that contain their own distinctive feel. Small traditional homes and buisness's that sometimes get lost in the shadows of major corporations, but all you need to is walk down the tiny twisty alleys to get lost in a more traditional Seoul. The Seoul that hasn't been westernized.

Looking back now I find myself chuckling about those little things that have happened. Getting lost on the subways, asking for help and even though people were more then willing to help, I would fine that they weren't always right. It's funny now but it was a bit exsaperating then. Then there was going into restaurants without being able to read the menues and having the women telling me to just sit down and to let them order my food for me, amusingly this ofteen worked out much better then the subway directions.

It's funny that since I have decided to go back to Korea in the next few months this chapter, this entry, dosen't have to end here. It's just become a short segment of the bigger picture. What I wrote yesterday before the computer crashed was so emotional (and very well written), it was as if everything was coming to an end, now I know it's not so this entry has become light harted and open ended. So I guess untill next time, and my next thoughts this is it.



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