Wednesday, November 24, 2010

News from Gyeongju

Hi all:

I imagine that most of you are aware that North Korea blasted off 180 rounds of artillery on a island just off of Incheon.  Things were tense last night; while it occured, we were walking around a beautiful pond illuminated by lights.  It was a historic shrine full of pottery and art.  Needless to say, we were suprised when we got back to the hotel.

We're fine.  The South Korean president is calling for an "enormous" reply, but things are smoothing over here.  The people are upset, especially since it was an attack on civilians.  But there's a growing feeling that things are going to be okay, as they have before when Pyongyang has initiated its tendency to grab attention.

We're fine.  This is always what would could occur here.  It's a place still technically in a state of war.  Today  we danced with children and played games with domestic adoptee families.  We visited a folk village over 700 years old.  I wore a pink hanbok.  It was a strange day full of ceremonies and cultural enrichment, but again we're on the South East tip of Korea now, away from the area where the shots were fired. 

Last night we had a traditonal Korean dinner full kimchi, rice, and all the other fixings.  Luckily we were sitting with a couple from California (the woman was born in Korea and spoke it fluently).  Tash made a passing comment that she'd love a Coke and the woman, Amy, ordered it for us.  Moments later, out came a woman carrying a glass bottle Coke with two small glasses.  There was a moment where I thought, "I really shouldn't drink this.  It's really Un-Korean of me."  We were drinking warm rice water.  But that idea passed and I drank that whole Coke and it was the best Coke of my life. 

More photos to come including pictures of the aforementioned pond and a picture of my birth mother, Tash, and I.  Back to Seoul in a few hours.  We're off this morning to visit a grotto and temple in the mountains. 


  1. I only wish I had the ability you do to put your feelings into words ...maybe then it would enable me to express how much your journey has touched me. The emotions churning inside you must be beyond anything you could have imagined. I am so very grateful and humbled that your birth mother's difficult decision brought you in your paper towel diapers into this reality, on the path to enrich so many lives here...your parents, your siblings, your soul mate and the creation of a new generation with her. You are so very often in my thoughts, now of course all day checking to see how you and Tasha are faring. Drink that coke Jay and Tasha and celebrate who you are and what you mean most of all to each other and to so many others as well, me among them.

    Love, Aunt Bobbi

  2. So glad to hear you're not only safe, but enjoying your incredible journey!