Thursday, July 9, 2009
Wednesday, school fieldtrip for Korean public school teachers in Taebaek: we packed into a bus at 6:20am. We went to Yongin, which is a little outside of Seoul. We went to a traditional folk village and saw many different roof styles. Some had dried rice, some had oak bark, some had slate, and some had wood planks. We also saw an old man walking a tight rope and telling everyone he was sad we weren't clapping and cheering enough for him. We also saw a traditional dance and drumming performance. It was really hot all day and everyone sweat a lot. Before 7am the coordinators of the trip gave everyone a clear plastic sack of potato sticks, dried seaweed, orange juice, and beer. They gave us more beer as we got out of the bus at the traditional folk village. Then they gave us rice wine with our lunches. On the way back the bus became a noraebong (kareoke) vehicle, with multicolored lights, a heavily reverbed microphone, and a lot more beer. There was a lot of singing along going on and dancing in the narrow, narrow aisle. The most impressive idea I took from all of this was that the beer, the noraebong bus, the dried seaweed and the entire trip were all sponsored by the Korean government.