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VisitSeoul.net

Government Website. READ MY REVIEWS! SEE MY PHOTOS! WHY SEOUL?

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

My Response...

One thing I've noticed is the sense of equality here. Bus drivers and janitors receive the same respect a doctor/lawyer. Where in Canada I feel there's an unspoken hierarchy, all Koreans are treated with similar courtesy. Elders are regarded for their wisdom and, on Lunar New Years, grandchildren bow at their feet for lucky money.

But where are the physically and mentally disabled? I rarely see anyone wheelchair-bound. 'Homes' must be common. South Korea is undergoing vast social change, yet the sense of unity prevails, especially given the situation in North Korea and S.K.'s sudden trendiness in the world market.

Koreans have been more than welcoming, but my otherness is always an issue. From what I've heard, you can learn a lot about Korean isolation, first hand, by visiting orphanages which tell stories of children born out of wedlock, divorce, mixed race etc. The importance of blood ties in Korea makes adoption a rarity.

Read about volunteering at a Korean orphanage here.

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