What I loved about S. Korea

The shock of the car accident I had in Seoul (see previous post), and the more ordinary shock of being in a new country, have settled down a bit now, and I find myself thinking more and more about the week I spent in S. Korea. What am I thinking about? Not the car accident. Not the amazing pace of growth, either. These were first impressions. I have more lasting impressions of …

– The food. Spicy, varied, lots of vegetables, lots of small dishes …

– The kindness of nearly everyone I met. The taxi driver, for example, kept calling the hotel to make sure I didn’t want to go get an x-ray. My professional colleagues treated me to wonderful meals and free-flowing conversation. Pub owners practiced their English in relaxed fashion, people went out of their way to help me, etc.

– The subway trains. Still amazes me that most people didn’t even hold on. They are that smooth. They go on time. They just work!

– The Indonesian coffee that my colleagues served at the office I was visiting (what I loved was that they had a coffee culture, generally!)

– The fabulous curvy creativity of the architecture in Incheon, and the fact that they had planned for green space everywhere.

– The fact that the nation as a whole seems to have a dream, and is amazingly focused on realizing it, quickly.

– The fact that you could walk around at night without even a thought that you were in any risk.

– The incredible seriousness and industriousness of the people I was working with … what long hours! And yet, they had time for hobbies and interests … music, gardening …

… and I think about so much more. Yes, my first impressions were certainly affected by that car accident. But as time goes by, I think less and less about it, and more and more about the wonderful people I met …

Seemed important to publish that, too!

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