Monday, November 30, 2009

Confessions of an English Teacher in Korea

Hey brother,

Went on a trip this weekend to Jinju--that is about three hours south west of here. Went with my boss and a coworker. The highlight of the trip was visiting an ancient castle and learning the history of a Japanese invasion. This was a pretty great story man. So this Korean hooker is a national hero. A long time ago like in the 1400's this Japanese general came and occupied Jinju, a former city of great importance. This guy was the brains behind the whole operation, planning strategy and having the balls and guts to drive his men to glory. Well one night this hooker gal. She started rubbing on the General and dancing with him. Then when they got near the edge of the castle, where it drops off a great wall on to the rocks beneath, she clung to his ass and dragged him down to their deaths. Dude this broad sacrificed her self for the Country. I guess the Japs tucked tail and booked out of there without their mighty general. It is amazing to think that people like that effect the flow of history. I visited her shrine and saw the place where she jumped to her death with her claws around the general. Pretty cool to see ancient history.

However, history aside, Korea looks the same no matter where you go. Every damn street in this country is indistinguishable from the next. I guess diversity in it's true sense, (not the PC commie Barrack Obama propaganda sense) is really beautiful. Our country even though it is new has so much more cool things to look at.

Anyway, it was another weekend trip of feeling out of place as I ate dinner and lived with my work mate's family for three days. We couldn't communicate a damn word to each other. Just bowing our heads off and smiling like there was no tomorrow. It was a blessing really. But it gets old man. Everyday not being able to say simple things like, "I appreciate your hospitality" or "I just want to be loved".

On Friday I flipped out. I have been so composed and put together here. Just smiling and bowing like a maniac. But man working around computers (full of bugs and tech problems) combined with a major language barrier, paired with the prospect of spending a weekend living on a Korean family's floor for the weekend was too much. When my computer broke down in the middle of class I started yelling and said, "that's it! I've had enough! I QUIT!" and stormed out of the office. I think all my Korean work mates were in amazement and half scared out of their wits. My manager came running after me and pulled me back and was forcefully blocking the door, saying you must teach, you must teach. F it man, we are lucky in America, someday a brother needs a sick day or personal day. I have been teaching my butt off for two and a half years without a break. Even working on Christmas and Thanksgiving. I feel like a prisoner here.

I guess I needed to get that off my chest. I keep telling myself that few foreigners ever come to Korea and experience this life. I count my blessings everyday and have learned to appreciate my home, my country, and begin to realize what is really important in life and how much we take for granted back home. I can't wait to come home. So have a great December, enjoy the weather, the snow in the mountains, Christmas lights and slay bells with your family. Peace Brother,