Tuesday, September 18, 2007

sunny, woopi, and me

sunny and woopi are my goryeong peeps! sunny is the principal of the elementary school and woopi is my co-teacher. today, the grace of goryeong was with us! our first class consisted of 3 second grade boys who were as well behaved and sweet as i only thought possible in my dreams. mid-way through class sunny popped his head in and informed us that the rest of our classes would not be able to meet today because all of the kids are rehearsing for "sports day." what a blessed miracle. so, sunny, woopi, and i sat outside under the soccer net for awhile and watched the children relay race, compete in a massive tug-o-war and do their class dance routines. afterward, since we still had well over and hour to kill, woopi took me to meet her mother-in-law. we went to her shop where she sells rice and beans....she enthusiastically invited us in, sat us down and made us coffee and fried leek pancakes. i am beginning to get used to drinking coffee that has at least half a cup of sugar in it! it isn't the most pleasant experience, but i am able to drink it with a smile now! the leek pancakes were to die for! i think i surprised mrs. shin at how quickly i gobbled them up! as we were leaving, she gave me a big squeeze and patted me all over my back side very firmly!! i had a momentary flashback of my massage a couple of weeks ago!! the older women here are so strong! and did i mention incredibly sweet? :)
our next stop was the goryeong museum. woopi was very excited to take me there and gave me a very well guided tour. i engaged her in a conversation about her thoughts on how women were treated in korea back when the wives were buried ALIVE with their dead king husbands. she shared my sentiments and said she is very glad that times have changed. and times have indeed changed, but there is still alot of mistreatment of women going on here, as there is all over the world. prostitution makes up 4% of the korean GNP. wherever you see two spinning barbarshop poles - that is a place where men pay to have sex with prostitutes. basically, anywhere i stand, at any moment, on any city street, i will most likely be able to see two barbarshop poles spinning round and round.

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