It’s About Time for Action
I am here in Korea as a tourist by definition. But I am also a traveler, or an adventurer, sometimes. I mainly travel to experience life outside of my homeland, although seeing a few important landmarks here and there wouldn't normally harm.
Korea is full of interesting adventures. For me, eating Korean food and swallowing my sorrows with loads of makgeolli (the local rice wine) is more exciting than seeing the Taj Mahal of India, or the Eiffel Tower of France.
After seeing the seven wonders of the ancient and modern world, visiting almost half our small world and, at my age, I think that nothing really compares to the experience of holding my partner's hand, having a nice romantic walk along the seaside on lovely night while listening to the sound of silence.
But this is a perfect setting and nothing in life is perfect. We compromise and we trade off most of the time. I found out that quietness is a rarity in many parts of Asia including Korea.
Recently I started to tune my ears in to enjoy the screams of little kids' excitement after an eventful day at school. And although I don't speak any Korean, I picked up few words and the musical rhythm from a regular street vendor, and I find myself chanting his advertising song at strange times during the day.
I find the experience of listening to Korean noise worthwhile.
I never liked fireworks and, on every big occasion, I deliberately stay in a place where I can avoid seeing or hearing them. I always voice my dislike of the overspending of different governments on such activities, including my own country, Australia.
In Korea, to unwind, I always choose a nice quiet seaside setting and go for a good night walk, and to enhance the experience I chew a roasted gray kind of seafood creatures (I think).
Lately I started to notice, especially on weekends, crowds of kids and adults firing fireworks at the beautiful blue skies above us. God, I wish our northern neighbors don't take these actions too seriously!
The sounds coming out of these little bombs are terrifying; it shook the little white puppy that I kept glancing at for a while. The poor thing will suffer anxiety forever it seems…
I am sure that, sooner rather than later (and maybe by accident), an overexcited child or a mentally retarded adult will fire a missile at the audience causing serious bodily harm.
I am also sure that the government, later rather than sooner, will have to forbid this activity at least in certain family gathering areas. Then, and only then, will I really feel sorry about the unpromising welfare of those who sell fireworks.
Mokhles K. Sidden
South Strathfield, Australia.
Currently in Bucheon