In all honesty there isn’t a whole lot going on but, since I have returned back to work there REALLY is nothing going on. On average we have about 2 teachers on staff daily. Today is especially exciting as we have four teachers that have shown up to work today. I really don’t know what any of them do during the work day. Lesson plans perhaps but, more than likely they are all online shopping for some new fashion.
I was lucky today in that my principal picked me up for work today saving me a few won on bus fees. The downside to that is that I don’t get 40 minutes to just read my book. Of course the upside is much better as I can sleep in and mess around on the internet at home for much longer as it only takes 10 minutes to get to work by car. Since I don’t have time to settle into a book and instead engage in broken English with my principal who is doing everything he can to learn English, I have a chance to take a gander at the Korean countryside.
All I can say is that it is really cold outside. Just looking out the window you can tell that it is colder than a witches tit in a brass bra out there. Some days a few minutes walk I swear that the hair in my nose has frozen and that if I sneeze they will snap off or shoot out with deadly velocity and accuracy to kill somebody who just wanted to get to work and warm up in the office.
Over the weekend, I had the pleasure of visiting the National Museum of Korea in Ichon. It was very impressive to say the least. They have a vast collection of ancient history implements. It was amazing to see through history how man has improved the tools necessary for survival. The museum featured a timeline that had world historical events as well as Korean, Chinese, and Japanese events. I was lucky to go with a Korean friend who did a great job of explaining things to me.
I have been to quite a few museums in my time but this was impressive. I can’t say I have been to many historical museums and the one back home in Tacoma is nice but, there is a huge difference. Of course in Tacoma’s defence they do not have the backing that the National Museum of Korea does. I really enjoyed seeing the different stone plinths that can be found all over the museum. On in particular was a ten story stone pagoda that had various stories chiseled into it as well as a lot of detail in the roofs and supports. That particular stonework was just over three stories high and you were able to climb up and see the very top.
Perhaps my favorite portion of the museum was the various Buddha statues. I am a huge fan of Buddha (although I am not Buddhist). The Buddhist section of the museum was fascinating as it gave you a detailed history of the various looks of buddha and did a fairly good job of showing how the look of Buddha has evolved over time.
One thing that I really liked was the Buddha type called Pensive Buddha, it was the first time I had ever seen Buddha in that particular pose and the look of Buddha was different from what I was used to. Unfortunately, I had a great deal of difficulty with my Sony Cybershot and was only able to take a few shots from the early portions of my visit to the museum and was not able to get any shots of the Pensive Buddha. The museum also did a great job of showing how Buddha is portrayed throughout Asia and at various points in history.
After the tour we hit the gift shop where I attempted to purchase a Buddha statue as I collect them but, unfortunately they do not carry any Buddhas so I settled for a few postcards to send home. If you have not visited the National Museum of Korea, I recommend checking it out as it doesn’t take a whole lot of time and the main exhibits are free of charge. The museum does an above average job of explaining what each item is and there are a lot of National Treasures as well as ancient coins on exhibit. Once I figure out why my Sony Cybershot is acting up and get it fixed I plan on visiting this museum again to get some great shots of the exhibits. Until then all of the pictures featured were taken by my camera phone which needless to say is not the best way to take pictures of national treasures.