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Sunday, January 10 2010
A really quite interesting fact on South Korea’s delivery food service; In South Korea, when a restaurant delivers food they deliver with real silverware, bowls, cups, plates, etc. Not the throw away type that Americans are used to. And if you ask me it is rather inefficient. (They come back to get everything later) They drop off all the food in nice bowls, plates, etc and everyone enjoys there meal and the silverware is then left outside the apartment door and is picked up later that evening. Do not ask me what happens if the silverware is not left out ( I do not know and do not intend to find out, at least I intend not to find out the hard way) The first few times I saw food outside of my neighbors door and wondered why this was the case. I just figured he was a weirdo. Then I was walking by with a fellow teacher and he told me about this phenomenon. It answered a lot of questions and also brought upon a new one. Why the hell do they do this? It seems so inefficient from a business standpoint. That is the thing with Koreans; they strive to become more business efficient like in the west but they find it tough to drop the traditional values that Koreans hold. (In ten years from now Koreans will not drop off silverware after making a food delivery) It is interesting to be in a country seeing this change from traditional to modern western standards of business, and realizing that in no more then 10 years this country will be completely different. It will be a younger generation with completely different values. From traditional to modern, it will be fun to watch.
Another weekend has passed; I did not do much this weekend. I am waiting on my paycheck, which I will get this week in cash because I have not received my alien registration card yet. There is nothing like getting paid in cash. Today I went with the two other white teachers (only one is American, other is British) to Hwaseong fortress in Suwon. It is quite a place. It is actually a part of Suwon and quite the popular tourist attraction. Construction of this fortress began in 1794 and went through 1796. The cool thing about this fortress is the wall; it seems like it is the Great Wall of China’s younger brother (much younger, like just out of the womb younger brother) It is around 3.43 miles (I did the conversion from kilometers for everyone) Everything over here is measured differently from the USA, actually just about everything in the world is measured differently from the USA. The wall that runs 3.43 miles actually has a city in it. The fortress and walls gave a major strategic advantage to the local warriors because of the protection it gave them from the enemy. After entering through the walls, there is a huge market place ( I love street markets) they tend to have amazing food at incredibly low prices. I had smoked octopus tentacles because a street vendor offered me one and it was amazing. From the burgers with BBQ sauce, to the orange chicken, waffles, pancakes filled with syrup and walnuts, chicken kabobs, dumplings, waffles with beef, I could go on and on. Anyways, it is fun and a very interesting thing to kill time and satisfy hunger. After walking through the market we stumbled upon a Buddhist temple. This temple was right outside of the market; it was elevated a little bit and was very peaceful. It was amazing how quiet it was because it was so close to the markets which were so busy. It felt like we were out in the country. The temples were cool; the colors used in the artwork were amazing, it was so bright, and so artistic. You could not spot one nail in any of the temples; which is what they take pride in. It really was a cool thing to see. It was interesting to see how the artwork has held up in the cold weather after all these years.
Another week of work is ahead; next weekend I am planning a trip into Seoul and maybe see more of the nightlife that Seoul has to offer, which is pretty exciting because the nightlife is supposed to be amazing and the bars do not close down until the last customer has left. I will be headed to more sights hopefully on Saturday and I will update anything that has happened after next weekend. I have updated my technology in drying my clothes. I no longer use my floor. I bought a jump rope which is connected to two different parts of my room and hang my clothes on that. The technological advancements in this apartment are amazing, next week I might have a microwave.