Stage 1 (pronounced "stay-jee won") SASHIMI
We went out to a traditional Korean style sashimi restaurant, where we all take off our shoes, sit on cushions and take shots of Soju. It's typical for men to sit at one end of the table and women at the other. We learned how to properly pour and receive alcoholic drinks. The recipient holds her/glass with at least one hand on the cup and if the other hand cannot reach then it touches the extended arm at the elbow, shoulder or chest. The cup must be held, not resting on the table. The pourer holds the beverage with both hands, if possible, and pours. You are NOT allowed to pour your own drink. If you would like a refill you lift your glass and politely gesture for a refill. It is also respectful to bring your shot glass to the host, head of the table, and give it to him to hold and receive a drink poured by you. Then the host reciprocates by pouring you a shot.
That's just the down-low on the drinks.
The food was beautiful and fresh! Fish directly from the tanks were sliced up to be enjoyed on our plates. The sides were incredible... bakes oysters on the shell with egg, salmon with creamy sauces, maki rolls, bowls of egg custards, red chili salads, pear salads, cabbage salads... and many more.
Stage ("stay-jee") 2- BEER BAR
At the Beer Bar the drinking continued. The men raced to the bottoms of their glasses, more than 1 time. Women clinked glasses in cheers, saying "gon-bay."
A korean teacher told me that the men were unusually loud this night. There was a strong jolliness in the crowd. A couple of older Korean men came in and walked down to the men's end of the table and scolded them for being so loud and disrespectful. Kent sent a bottle of Soju to their table as a peace offering. After a little while he went over to the men to shake hands and the previously upset man took Kent's hand, looked long and hard at him and referred to himself as "older brother," in Korean, to Kent. The man felt very respected and was so grateful that he bought them 2 rounds of beers. It was a cool connecting moment for Kent. I guess it's like in the States, nothing says "I'm sorry" and "Thank you" like a round of drinks.
|Joanne Teacher... it's her going away party.|
Stage ("stay-jee") 3- Noribong
It took a little persuading but we got the boss to spring for some kareoke... in Korean, Noribong! The group had dwindled but there was a strong showing in the singing room. Kent got the party going immediately, grabbing the mic and singing our school's kid song... a cappella. Mr. Won paid from a big table of beer and snacks and an hour of singing room time. Although the foreign teachers are more loud and outgoing to the untrained eye, when a Korean teacher takes the mic all eyes are on her. Koreans sure know how to noribong (literally translated into singing room). We had such a great time, that when the hour was over, we paid for another whole hour of singing fun. By that time is was only co-teacher Courtney, her boyfriend Joe, and us Hutchu's.
|Hailey Teacher has a voice like a songbird.|
|Mr. Choi had a very good time.|
|Kent Teacher also had a very good time.|
|Jade Teacher will also be leaving SLP School this summer. |
She's Kent's main co-teacher and she will missed.
|Teachers Chaewon, Jade and Hailey|
|This is how the end of the night looked: Kent, me, Courtney (Coco) and Joe|