Only a month into our Korean adventure and we were expecting a visitor from home. My dad was in Asia on business and able to arrange a whirlwind visit. I was very excited and mentioned it, as you do, to my co teachers who seemed pleased for me. As the day of my dad’s arrival drew closer I booked a motel room for him near my apartment and prepared him with directions for Incheon to Yeongju. I would be teaching during the day and meeting him after school at the motel.
As my father was mid air flying out to Hong Kong there was an unexpected change of plan. At the English department’s weekly meeting I was handed the agenda which as usual was predominately in Hangeul. I was drawn to the English paragraph at the bottom of the page that explained that,
Anna Teacher’s father will visit Yeongju on April 11th. He will come to school and the principal will give him a tour of the school. Then we will all go to dinner together.
Talk about a spanner in the works. I had absolutely no idea that my co workers had made any plans for my father’s visit. Frantically I emailed him with new instructions to make his way to my school when he got to my hometown. I spent the whole day of his arrival on edge waiting for news that he had made it safely to Korea and then onto my school in Yeongju. I found myself staring out of the window during my classes fretting about his whereabouts.
As it often does in Korea, everything worked out just fine. I walked outside the school building at 3pm and there was my father, strolling without a care in the world across the playground. After a guest appearance in my after school class, which he and the students throroughly enjoyed, the school day was over. There was of course, a photoshoot with my co teachers and father at the front entrance before we drove to a local restaurant for dinner. No drama. At least until half of the diners had food poisoning the next day at school. That news provided me with another day of worry that my dad may be spending one of his precious, few days in Korea feeling unwell.
He was fine. Yet another unnecessary day of worry.