While spending time in Korea, Hong Kong and Macau, many have asked: "So, have you always wanted to travel to Asia?" My honesty gets the better of me and my response is: "Actually, Asia was never high on my list of places to travel." I am so thankful for friends living here to draw me to a culture I am now so intrigued by. I've had the opportunity to live in community with Asians and foreigners for the last three weeks in Korea, and Hong Kong. I was asked yesterday what has been my favorite part of Korea. After some thought, hands down, it has been observing this group of people. I have always been fascinated and intrigued by people and their lives and it has been a treasure observing life here, primarily in Seoul. I could spend hours on the subway or sitting in Starbucks (a favorite spot) just watching people. I love the kids, they are beautiful. I've seen the elderly, their strong attachment to tradition and how history has affected them. I've seen the youth trying to figure themselves out, caught between the pull of Westernization and keeping tradition.
I've also had the opportunity to live life in community here. Doing life with people has been one of my life themes as of late. I had no idea this would involve living life overseas with people. I've seen how detrimental community is to foreigners here. English is rarely spoken and a simple task such as ordering food is truly a challenge, this is where networking and community becomes survival. I am amazed at the Church and how it has been created, always there, meant for taking and giving. It really is a beautiful thing and it has been a treasure to see it at work.
Being here has deepened my love for people, culture and community. I anticipate returning home with a broadened porthole view of the people I do life with in my home community.
This is just my view - my 3 week glimpse into a deep and vast culture.