[잉그리드 전주살이] The Good and the Dumb
[잉그리드 전주살이] The Good and the Dumb
  • Ingrid 전주대 교수
  • 승인 2017.09.07 19:16
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On Tuesday night I had a meeting with the executive of Jeonju North Jeolla KOTESOL. KOTESOL is a national organization of English teachers dedicated to improving the level of English teaching to learners of English as a second language. We are the local chapter. We put on workshops with speakers who lecture or show how to improve teaching or how to use a variety of different methods or activities. We met in a coffee shop near Jeonju University and worked on different projects for over two hours. We separated at 9pm. I went out to find my car was blocked in by another car. Fortunately there was a phone number in the window so I called it. No answer. Hmm. I called it again. No answer. I called a third time and when there was no answer again I started to get impatient. If I park behind someone I keep my phone in sight in case they want to leave before I return. I mean, it is the only polite thing to do. If they call I should be ready at the drop of a hat to leave where I am and move my car out of their way, because I am inconveniencing them. So why wasn't this person? Maybe they think that the call is from a telemarker because they don't recognize my number. So I sent a message "Please move your car! " I don't know how to write that in Korea so I did that in English.

My car was parked between the coffee shop and a government building. There were people in the building but the door was locked. I saw three women exit the building so I asked if they knew the owner of the car. They didn't but they looked inside the car for a clue as to who is the owner. They looked for a phone number but I showed them that I have called it I am not completely helpless but I was not doing too well that night. They went back into the office and found a senior worker and a younger man. I showed them that I have called but the older man called too and got no answer. The younger man went into the coffee shop and asked each table if it was their car. The older man suggested that I honk the horn so I did. Still nothing. The two men waited with me as did the women. It was very kind of them to do that rather than walk away and leave me alone. That is the thing about people in Jeonju. Not all, but definitely most people in Jeonju are very kind and try to be helpful as much as possible even if you do not share a language. Many look at the situation and can guess.

Finally I get a call back. It is the owner. I explain to her, in Korean, that her car is a problem and it is behind my car so I cannot go. She rushes, actually running, and gets into her car. I tell her that next time she should watch her phone, that I had been waiting for over twenty minutes. I get into my car and move it so she can park in my spot. But before I drive away I thank the ladies and the two gentlemen for their help. I really did appreciate them trying to help me and then waiting with me. As I was driving home I received a text message from the car owner. The woman wrote "I am sorry :(." I did appreciate the apology and it did make me feel better.

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