This is a bit late out of the blocks, but kim’s guesthouse was the place I stayed after doing the winter camp finished in early Feb. (There was a few days at bucky’s pad in between too) but all up I was two weeks at the Kim’s place and I’m sure that, overall, the environment softened the transition between one full-on experience, and moving into the present set-up. It was kind of an uncertain limbo-time in a strange new land, so it was nice being around people all the time.
I can’t access Blogspot blogs presently – I think the skool’s blocking it. But first up I was dorming with brian and josh (who’s linked at brian’s).
There was lots of Japanese people blow through and all of them were nice, as in, polite and not with prickly egos like how westerns can be.
There was this Japanese girl who really liked to sing and on one occasion I heard her break into this Mongolian horse-riding trad. stuff which sounded amazing – with all of the unconventional note-shifting.
Like if it was a prison and I was doing life, I eventually got the choice bunk in the choice dorm. For a while there was an English guy and a dutch guy there. One night they went out and got sauced. The dutch guy puked in the room, albeit in a plastic bag, but the aroma was none to pleasing.
Pictured are a Japanese guy, another japanese guy named yasuo, who did computering at tokyo uni, which apparently is pretty hard to get into, some cute girl from Busan – who wanted to be a flight attendant but only had the marks to get into economics (those filffy economics majors), some uncomfortable looking whitey and a girl named Bo-ra — who was by far the most interesting (from the psychological POV) person I met during the stay.
She was born in korea but adopted by dutch folks and grew up there, with two other non-blood, also korean, sibs and a biologically related -to the parents- sib for good measure. This was the first time she’d been back to korea and was even just trying some of the national dishes for the first time with us.
She said she kept looking around the streets and subway and seeing guys who looked just like her brother — i.e.. her facial recognition cues were just as unadjusted as mine.
I just thought it was a rather bizarre circumstance to be in where a person had grown up being very much the outsider (europe has plenty of immigrants, but I don’t think many east-asians … Bucky also weighed in on this saying that adoption programs like that from Korea to western Europe + Scandinavia were going for a while during that time = late 70s early 80s but it was found that a lot of em were getting mental probs from growing up as such a small minority) — and coming to a place where she’s not given a second look, but not knowing the language or customs.
And of course there was the extended Kim family themselves. After a fortnight I was starting to feel like one of the tribe. Mr. Kim helped me tie my tie for the first recruiter job-innerview — he was unemployed, laid off from the hyundai plant, so I could dig the whole down n’ out lumpin’ vibe. Sunny (rightly) complained that she had to do all the cooking for the family as well as run the bidness, her brother drove the car and the kid, Na-something, brought me into first-contact with the fine art of snorting back your own snot rather than using a handkerchief. Although it’s a national pastime here, I will never get used to it or take it up. This kid sounded like a spitfire or something.
Anyway it was a nice place to stay. They have complimentary toast with strawberry jam and low-grade instant coffee that’s hard to beat. And you can take as many posed fotos with folks as your camera will fit.
I and Sunny wearing one of her trademark, kick-arse faux-velvet tracksuits.