We went out to dinner last night - the Korean staple of fired chicken and beer - and had a blast. Sally is leaving to become an Ajima (Korean for old lady, basically) and we teased her about practicing her ajima elbow (Old ladies in Korea routinely elbow people in sensitive areas to get their way - whether its to get a seat on the subway or samples at Lotte Mart). We met Susan's husband who speaks English better than I do and continuously tried to set up my new co-worker, Matthew, with various Korean ladies of his acquaintance.
If I ever have a question about Korean culture or language, they are more than happy to explain it. Rachel, out of some misguided theory that I actually want such information, has been informing me on the best places to go bungee jumping. Lynn recommends Korean Dramas for me to watch, and Sally always bring in Korean candy for us to try. Debbie explains things in terms that I understand when the other explanations just aren't doing it and William will explain things that it never even occurred to Debbie to explain because they are so common place. Jonathan and Matthew are both born and bred geeks who get my obscure references to Settlers of Cattan or npr, or some other geeky, web based happenings. All in all , its a good mix.
Yesterday, for instance, I learned about something rather peculiar. I saw some signs for the world cup game (being played today! woohooo!) that spelled it 'Corea' instead of with a 'K'. I asked William about that and he said that the name used to be spelled with a 'C' but when Japan invaded, they changed it to 'K' so that Korea would come after Japan in the alphabet. Really petty. I don't know why they didn't change it back, maybe because by then Korea had appeared on the world stage and they didn't want to confuse anyone into forgetting about them. Names have been changed for sillier reasons.