Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Happy Chu-soak

It's 9 a.m. on the morning of Chuseok, I've been up for two hours, and I haven't seen a single person walk by on the street or in the park. It's not raining now,

As these captures from local tv demonstrate, we've had a bit of rain. It hasn't been nearly as bad in our neighborhood; I guess all the rain in our area drains right into the Yangjae Cheon. We haven't had flooded streets or anything, but it's been nasty. A low-lying area by the stream was already under water when I went for my run at 10 a.m. yesterday, and then the sky opened up as it does in Florida and it rained for hours and hours as it does in Ithaca and oh, my galoshes, it was wet.

The Korea Times says that parts of Seoul got ten inches of rain yesterday.

I was delighted to get a dinner invitation from Nikki, our art teacher, and her husband Dex, who will be our art teacher for a couple of months while Nikki's out having a baby. As I took the five-minute walk to Costco to get a dessert to take (Boston cream pie!) the rain permeated my umbrella and dripped right through onto my head.

Nikki and Dex were in Zach's old apartment, the big one by the school that I had passed on because two and a half people need the space more than one person and a cat. They had just had their ceiling patched up, but when I got there, they had a bucket on a big tarp to catch the rapid dripping coming through. The stairs all the way up to their fourth-floor flat were soaking wet; water had cascaded down the stairs all the way to the ground.

I lived for over fifty years in, first, the grayest town north of Robert E. Lee's pocket, and then the humidity of the hurricane belt, and I've never seen anything like the soaking, squishy weather we've had here for the last couple of months. We're all really sick of it and we wish to complain to the management.

As for the dinner, it was very nice; Dex had prepared tofu and traditional Korean veggies, and did I mention the Boston cream pie(!)? I'm very proud-- I bought it myself. After dinner, we played a Korean ripoff of Monopoly called, in Korean letters, "Ho-tael Gae-im". Who knew that Dex, who looks as if he just time-warped from Woodstock, was such a ruthless capitalist? Or that the two most valuable cities on Earth (the game's Boardwalk and Park Place) are Seoul and Busan? The fun part was constantly having to figure out with every transaction, that, for example, "150 man Won" is 1.5 million.

So it's Wetsday, halfway through our week off, and it's cool (temps in the low 60s... maybe blessed fall is here at last. I believe that we're caught up on precipitation till, say, November.


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