Korean Culture Experience Day

As part of our teaching contract, we are sometimes required to take trips to various cities in the Chungnam Province. Yesterday, teachers from all over the province converged in the city of Dangjin for a cultural day.

Information given to us prior to this day was all very haphazard. No one knew complete details, but we did know we would be attending some sort of concert and lectures. To our ever-pleasant surprise, the Office of Education had organized for us to see the Chungnam Symphony. There were also performances by drummers, a “master singer,” and a haegeum player. They played a mix of traditional and modern pieces, including Tchaikovsky, a variation of  “Arirang,” and “Love Theme” from Cinema Paradiso.

The lectures following the symphony varied from hilarious to confusing, but some information was helpful. I can’t wait to use some of the sample lesson plans with my kids.

The day went by quickly, and soon we were on the bus heading back to Seocheon. This is where things get interesting. Only in Korea would a business-sponsored bus allow a beer run, and then proceed to convert the bus into a norebang club – neon lights and all. The ride home was filled with harmonious exhibition, but also guttural moans of lubricated stupor. I have never been so entertained and mortified at the same time. Seocheonites and Jang-Hang folks sure know how to have a good time!

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