One night at Starbucks, Mark took this picture. Harmless enough, we were just amused at all the trays (Koreans love trays) that were overflowing on the waste/recycle and coffee condiment station (isn’t that what you call the place that houses all the sugar, cream, and spices you put in your coffee?).
A Korean woman asked Mark (in English) what he was doing. Fair enough, what were these two crazy Americans doing? We blamed it on all of you back home … we said you would be amused at the sight. Well, whether you are or aren’t amused, it struck up a conversation and now a friendship.
So Hyeon (sounds like: So He-yung) is an English Teacher at a hog won (a private language school, like Mark’s school) in Gwangju. She is a lovely Korean woman who is more than happy to answer all my crazy questions while she practices her English.
Today we enjoyed lunch at her favorite restaurant. We had marinated pork rib, cooked right in front of us on our own mini BBQ, wrapped in lettuce with bean paste, sesame oil, and garlic. YUM!. Plus a coleslaw like dish that is made with vinegar and wasabi instead of mayo – as wonderful as it sounds!
She answered a lot of my questions about the culture (like what is a coffee girl … answer: a bit of a slander, like, “make sure you work hard in school so you don’t end up a coffee girl”) Also, I had questions about our mail. You know, Mark and I were wondering “are you my mail”? Well, today I finally got the answer.
Yes, I did carry this letter (and a few others that have arrived since) downtown with me.
Yes, So Hyeon did laugh at me when I pulled the letters out.
Yes, it is so nice to (finally) know it is not ours and that I can now identify the names of the previous tenants.
It’s the little things that make the day great!