This past week was the week Emily returned. Her arrival heralded some other changes. Kevin, another foreign teacher connected with the school but working at a separate branch, was scheduled to leave. I moved into his apartment room and I was also relocated to the branch to school to take his place.
It was a little hectic but so far I am liking this change. It’s a little smaller and right away, I felt more relaxed there. I’m pretty much getting a chance to start all over again though it’s not quite back to square one….maybe square two. I’ve learned a bit from my first three months here and now I have to figure out how to apply it in this situation. I’m going to be dealing with some different challenges though, so I still have much to do.
That’s all I have the energy for right now. If you are curious to know more, ask me questions and I will strive to answer more fully.
The only other update I have is this:
Emily and I decided to explore Sangmu this weekend (it’s the part of town where my new school is located–it’s perhaps considered a new “downtown,” the hub where the younger crowd gathers to enjoy the nightlife). Specifically, we wanted to walk around the 5.18 (May 18th) Memorial park. It’s a park that commemorates a time when the citizens of Gwangju protested the government of the time. If you want more details, look it up or wait until I learn more and make a post about it.
Anyways, the goal was just to walk around a park, enjoy the nature and take pictures. I haven’t had much nature lately and it sounded like this particular place would fill some of that need.
The “exploring Sangmu” part was a success but we never made it to the park. We were a little fuzzy on its exact location so we took a guess using the map of Sangmu on my phone and a hunch. So off we went, to the the big park indicated on the screen. It wasn’t what we expected, and rightly so. It turned out we’d found the people’s park of Sangmu. Sure, it was pretty….
But there wasn’t much of what I’d call “Nature” there.
Also, what’s the point of camping in a place like this?
We walked around a field where people were playing soccer. My camera and a tree worked together to take this picture.
It was funny enough that we’d left our apartment building looking like a pair of walking highlighters. We continued to be entertained when we came across this soccer game and realized that we matched the them as well. We could have passed as players or at least fans of opposite teams.
My GPS located another park just south of us and this time we could read that the name started with the numbers 5.18.
Walking in the heat had tired us out but it was close by and in the direction we needed to go anyway. Unfortunately, this was not the park we wanted either. It was the 5.18 Liberty park that is a small bit of land that commemorates the event with some buildings in the style of that time and functions as a museum of sorts.
We finally found what we wanted on my map but by this time it was late afternoon, we were tired, and it was pretty much in the opposite direction from where we had explored that day. We got on the subway and headed home.
I’m determined to try again another weekend. I should get it right this time. There are only so many parks left to explore in Sangmu.
And finally, a scene we came across on our way back to the subway station: Kids finding ways to stay cool on a hot day