Thursday, February 23, 2012

Jeju Island: The Two Kids' Reports

Readers who've been with us vicariously over the past week will know that my wife, two kids, and I visited Jeju Island for five days and that I posted many photos as proof, not that I needed to prove anything . . . except for our visit to the southernmost part of South Korea, Mara Island, which does deserve documentation, as seen below:

Readers have already seen this photo, of course, but I thought I might be allowed to recycle it since my daughter wrote a short report on Mara Island:
The Southernmost Part of Korea
Our family went on trip to Jeju Island for four nights and five days. We stayed on the second floor of a pension that had a café on the first floor, and visited many places of Jeju Island by car. Our family went to the beach -- even though it was too cold to play in the water -- spent time at a couple of museums, visited a photograph gallery by a famous photographer, Kim Young-Gap, viewed beautiful nature, and ate all kinds of Jeju foods. Of course, I loved every place I went and had a good time, but I especially liked Mara Island, an island at the southernmost part of South Korea.

We took a ferryboat to Mara Island, and because I easily get seasick -- and carsick, too -- I felt horrible when I got there. I didn't know if I was going to throw up, and I couldn't enjoy the tasty black noodle seafood, Mara Island's specialty. After our family had the black noodles for lunch, we took a quick walk around the island to enjoy the view and take pictures at the southernmost part of the island. We didn't get to go to the southernmost part because the ferry would be arriving soon and we needed to walk back to the harbor. However, we went close to the spot, and took some nice pictures -- I took some pictures of my mom, too, because she's always the one who takes pictures and never is in any of them.

My dad and I noticed a Catholic church with a nice architectural design that had a Celtic-style cross, and stepped into it. There was sacred music, which made me feel as if I were in Europe -- though I have never been to Europe -- and my dad and I talked about how we liked Catholic churches more than Protestant churches because of their atmosphere. It was a nice experience. I loved Mara Island's size because we could get a view of the whole island. The natural scenery was nice, and because of the sky being so blue with a few cotton-candy-like clouds and the ocean so clear with a pure emerald color, I really liked the island. The scenery was wonderful, and I hope to go there another time. Oh, and my stomach was healed because of Maria!
So goes Sa-Rah's report. The reference to "Maria" derives from Sa-Rah's encounter with the statue of the Virgin in front of the Catholic church that we saw on Mara Island. Perhaps Sa-Rah's 'healed' stomach can serve as evidence of a miracle, prompting others to flock to the church as a pilgrimage site, possibly even effecting the renaming of the island as Maria Island!

Be that as it may, En-Uk also liked Mara Island, but more because the celebrities who appear on the television show Muhan Dojeon (무한도전) -- best translated as Endless Challenge (rather than Infinite Challenge) because the celebrities are endlessly challenged -- visited the island to eat its famous black noodles. Fortunately, they left some noodles for us. En-Uk also reported on the Jeju trip, but only mentioned Mara Island in the closing words to his rather abbreviated report:
I went to Jeju Island. I ate black pork. It was tasty. I went to the Believe It Or Not Museum. It was fun. I went to Seongsan Ilchulbong. It was not fun. I went to Cow Island. I ate peanut ice cream. I even went to a lava cave. I went to the Chocolate Museum. I ate a lot of chocolate. It was great. I had lots of fun. I went to Mara Island. I had some black noodles.
Hmmm . . . I believe I'm going to need to work with En-Uk on his writing if he is going to reach Sa-Rah's level in two years . . .

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At 11:56 AM, Blogger Kevin Kim said...

En-Uk's style is terse, and terse people resist being told to elaborate. I encounter the problem daily in my current job: most students, no matter how old they are, groan at the notion of writing anything at length.

At a guess, En-Uk's more of a talker than a writer, more of a doer than a thinker. He has the look of a wiry athlete ready to leap into the fray. Not to say that he lacks depth, of course: his quirky humor shines through in his artwork, which is why I visit his blog almost daily.

I'd bet that, given his sense of humor, En-Uk might be cajoled to write at length were he given creative assignments: dialogues between and among some of his cartoon characters, etc.-- anything to move him beyond "I drew X because I hate X."

How complex is his self-expression in written Korean?

At 12:05 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Good suggestions, Kevin. I'll see if I can apply them.

My wife says he's quite funny in his written Korean essays for her, but not nearly so good a writer as Sa-Rah.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 12:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh I don't know Jeff. Sa-Rah of course could almost stand-in for alot of your stuff. Probably not where you go "all-Milton" on us though.

I'd take the liberty of suggesting you hand over the editing duties on those posts to En-Uk.

You do after all, usually complain of having to "grade essays" - might be worth the time for you to consider handing over the reins of power to your kids.

(Sa-Rah? En-Uk? Hello, JK here. Ask your Dad for the particulars. Plain brown envelope don't forget.)


At 5:25 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

JK, good point about Sa-Rah's writing being like mine.

I wish I could hand over the grading to my kids . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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At 6:31 AM, Blogger Carter Kaplan said...

Why not hand over the grading? It's very simple:

1) Stand next to the dining room table and throw the papers up in the air.

2) The papers that are not stapled properly will readily separate, and will be easy to spot. These earn a "C".

3) The papers that land on the floor receive a "B".

4) The papers that land on the table receive an "A".

Not only will the children gain practical experience in what it means to be a professor in the modern world and thus motivate them to someday get their PhDs, but it will also give them some physical exercise.

At 6:35 AM, Blogger Carter Kaplan said...

I'd like to hear more from En-Uk on the lava caves. Of all your activities, I was most intrigued by these striking geological formations. Perhaps this is a subject En-Uk might essay with his art pens?

At 6:56 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Carter, I'm getting too old to change my grading methods, and your suggestion is just too physical for an old guy like me . . .

I'll ask En-Uk about the lava cave . . .

Jeffery Hodges

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