This morning, something magical that I had been waiting for a long time finally happened.
I was waiting at my bus stop, like every morning, and when the bus came I was unsurprised to discover that it was packed to capacity. I pushed my way in, barely lifting myself over the steps on my tiptoes. When the bus reached the next stop, a girl’s high school, another passenger and I stepped out of the bus to let the deluge of high school girls pass us. And that’s when it happened. The woman that stepped off the bus with me said “The bus is very crowed.” BAM! And just like that I had my first English conversation with a Korean stranger.
I’m so happy this has finally happened. I know many of the Koreans in my area can speak English, so I figured it was just a matter of time until one of them started talking to me. Today was the day! Turns out she works at an English academy teaching elementary kids a fair ways off from our neighborhood. That’s pretty much the only thing I know about her, but it’s fine. I’ll probably see her every morning, so I’ll be able to talk to my new friend. Maybe, and this is just me dreaming, other Koreans will see that I’m not threatening in any way and they’ll come and talk to me. I’m not talking about asking for me to give them lessons, I’m just talking about knowing Koreans in my area teh way you’d know your neighbors in Canada. Time will tell…
Actually, the more I think about it, the more amazing it is that she actually spoke to me. Here, from what I’m told, people find it strange if Koreans speak English so they tend to shy away from speaking it in public. For instance, my friend once called me from the bus and after our converstaion, she sent me a text message saying that everyone was looking at her and she was ashamed for speaking English. So you can see why a stranger striking up a conversation in English in a packed bus would be very surprising. Oh well, I’m happy she took the initiative!