I was informed yesterday that I have a road crossing problem. Apparently I’m doing it all wrong. Of all the things I do on a daily basis in Korea, this wasn’t the one I was worried about not getting right. I was under the impression that crossing the road in England was on par with Korea (aside from the whole driving on the left side of the road thing in the UK). The revelation came during the end of semester speaking tests. The test began like any other with a friendly and predictable,
Me: How are you?
Student: I’m fine thank you, and you?
Me: I’m well, thanks. You’re fine?
Student: No teacher, I’m very bad. I have many study.
Me: So you’re not fine.
Nothing unusual there. I have a conversation very similar to this a hundred times a day but then this one took a strange turn.
Student: Teacher, you cross the road wrong. I saw you many times and you have big problem.
Me: Uh….I do?
Student: Big problem. Your walking is too fast. Stone in the road you can’t see and maybe you…. (demonstrates falling and then being run over by a car by rolling around the floor and making horrendous noises) and die. Or maybe your leg tired and your leg will die. Then you…. (she then repeats the ‘falling to the death scene’ once again).
Me: I think I’ll be ok.
Student: No teacher, it is very dangerous. More dangerous than car. And casino.
Me: And casino?
Student: Yes, casino make you die faster than car. First your heart die, then your head and then your angel soul. And your family send you to Japan. Bad person go there.
So there you have it. Casinos and crossings are not to be taken lightly. We never did have much time for the test after those revelations, but based on sheer comedy this was the best test yet. And, it did make me walk a little slower on the walk home from school that day, until I had to run to make a green light when I threw caution into the wind and let my legs get tired!