Sometimes things happen to me or I witness things and just chuckle about them to myself. I don’t tell anyone about them. I’ve been thinking that it’s kind of sad that I don’t tell anyone, because sometimes they’re funny little anecdotes or interesting stories that add some colour to my life’s story. I thought I’d just write about them and post them on my blog. That way they’re recorded, so I can remember them, and the 3 of you who read my blog will also be in on some stories with me!
This week two things of note happened to me. On Monday night, I was walking to a meeting in Seomyeon from our apartment(which is a good distance). I had debated if I should drive, take the bus/subway or walk. I really wasn’t sure, and I made the decision to walk. During my walk I came to a point where I needed to cross the street. I waited at the crosswalk patiently for the ‘walk’ sign to appear. When it appeared I began to cross the road, the whole time being sort of lost in thought and prayer. I was rudely jostled out of my state of reflection/supplication by the sound of an engine revving. I glanced to my left and what did I see but a sedan accelerating in my direction. Over my years in Korea, I’ve learned that red lights don’t often seem to command the same respect to drivers that they do back home. I prepared myself to jump on the hood of the car (as I’d done a couple years earlier) and shouted a rather forceful ‘HEY!!!!’ The car came screeching to a halt about a foot and a half in front of me. I looked up and saw before me a woman, scared and embarrassed. I then continued with my walk, shaking my head a little.
Earlier in the same walk something happened that I couldn’t stop myself from laughing at. Close to our apartment is a police station, and in front of it there was some loud yelling. A confrontation between a short, near-elderly taxi driver and a tall, young, well-to-do arrogant man was taking place. The taxi driver was yelling at the young man and the young man’s girlfriend or wife was yelling at the taxi driver. The young man was making remarks, and was clearly upset, but wasn’t talking as rapidly as either the taxi driver or the woman. I was wondering if I was going to see a fight take place. What happened just blew my mind, and it’s a picture I won’t soon forget! All of a sudden the young man spat in the face of the taxi driver. The taxi driver grew enraged and spit in the young man’s face, rather comically and with some effort because of the height difference. Surely, I thought, this will come to blows. Again I was wrong. A spitting war ensued. I’ve never seen anything like it! It was like two sprinklers fighting. Each wet blow was followed with a wet response. Finally, the taxi driver gave a weak slap to the young man’s face (it was so weak it actually resembled more of a push). The young man responded with facewashing (hockey fans know what this is) the taxi driver. The ‘fight’ ended with the taxi driver wiping his glistening head with a handkerchief and looking around, wounded, as though trying to find someone to verify that he’d been wronged by the young man. It was at that moment that I was sure that I made the right choice to walk to Seomyeon.