Friday, November 5, 2010

It's New To Me

One of the best things about living in a different country is encountering new things. Museums, culturally significant landmarks, and amusement parks are fun but the things that I don't plan to encounter usually stick with me more. Korea has given me so much of that unplanned entertainment, that raw uncut culture.

This is certainly not the most memorable thing I've happened upon but it is the most recent. We travelled to Daejon for an Ultimate Frisbee tournament. We got off the train and left the large train station and found this huge gathering just outside the entrance. They had a stage with someone shouting forcefully to the group. There were hundreds of guys with these red headbands.

The stage had a huge fist as a backdrop. I have no idea what they were saying, but the tone sounded like "NO MERCY!" or "DEATH TO TRAITORS!" It was really heated (sounding).

The thing is, you never know how things are going or what is happening because of the language barrier. The guy who was yelling and rallying the attendees stopped yelling, the attendees stopped chanting, and 3 young girls came on stage and started dancing to pop songs. Can you imagine being at an environmental protest and then taking a break to have a few members of the high school dance team move in unison to Lil' Wayne's latest track? It was just weird.

I love it. I love the unpredictability, and I love that things that are probably very normal and part of everyday life here cause me to stop and think: It might be normal here, but it's new to me.

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