Shake Up the Mundane

Tea Time and Sea Roads Shake Up Someone’s Same-Old Syndrome

A girl sitting two rows behind lightly gasped as our bus passed through the rural western Korea town.

“That house looks like it came from somewhere in America,” she said of the single-family dwelling, an odd sight if an expat spends the entirety of their time here somewhere where such things rarely exist, like Seoul, Busan or pretty much any of this country’s metropolises.

Her astonishment made me smile. She’s likely not been in Korea long, at least not long enough to have seen that single-family houses in Korea exist, even if their apartmentalized counterparts outnumber them by perhaps 5,000,000 to one–kind of how waygookin sometimes feel outnumbered by their Korean overlords.

But, they exist. It was about a year ago that I, too, stared dumbfounded on Gadeok Island, during my first visit to Soyang Orphanage.

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