this past week, autumn officially blanketed korea in the most vivid reds and yellows, only to shudder them to the sidewalks and gutters in a matter of days. it was a gorgeous burst that you could have missed if you would have blinked your eyes for too long.
thankfully, the schools noticed. korea is proud of its autumnal beauty, and both david’s and my main schools had “teacher health days” this past wednesday that consisted of kids getting out early so the teachers could board chartered buses and travel out to remote, picturesque locales to soak it all in for a few hours. i actually went back to a place that i’d traveled to before, called sunchang, but i didn’t mind seeing it again in a different season. it’s a place filled with waterfalls and streams, and it was nice to walk with my coteacher seongjong and another young teacher named yoonchi, whose been really friendly to me. she’s the youngest teacher in the school, and so teachers are always bossing her around. it’s kind of surprising how seriously they take the age thing at times. i’d be walking next to her on the trail when a group of teachers taking a photo would yell and wave her over, only to make her take the picture. she takes it in stride. on the ride back, she even shared her headphones with me as she played an entertaining mix of k-pop. it’s amazing how far a friendship can go on just a few gestures, expressions, and a korean-to-english app on a smartphone.