Of all the apartments I’ve lived in Korea (eight) the one I am in now ranks near the bottom. Despite one of the more “modern” ones in terms of the interior (though having an electrical outlet next to the shower still begs the question, what was the architect doing in the class the teacher talked about where not to put an electrical outlet?) the outside leaves a lot to be desired. Especially when you get a a good view of a junkyard.
Fortunately, there isn’t a junkyard dog yapping all night.
Where not to install a shower head/electrical outlet
It looks more crowded than it actually is in this photo, but I sure do miss living back in the Illinois Valley or my home in Laos.
Blocks and blocks on top of one another.
More concrete than the eye can see.
Monday started cold and then it got colder and windier followed by periods of rain. By mid afternoon, the day had turned out to be a glorious blustery day.
A glorious blustery day?
Most of the time in the Korea, especially in cities like Daejeon, the skies are hazy. But after a hard rain or a hard wind, the skies clear up and the views are glorious.
I took this photo from the 5th floor of SolBridge. Although not too clear, you get an idea of what a glorious blustery day looks like.
I love days like this one.
A sign in downtown Daejeon.
Located on Mt. Bomun in Daejeon are two Korean War monuments. One of them is a UN monument for the 24th Infantry Division and the other is a battle monument for the Battle of Daejeon.
I first visited Mt. Bomun (or Bomunsan as it is referred to in Korean) last summer a few days before the 60th anniversary of the fall of Daejeon as the North Korean juggernaut continued to push US and ROK forces further south.
I mention this battle in War Remains.
Looking closely at the monument and the soldiers, the soldier in the middle is Gen. William Dean who was captured at Daejeon and spent the remainder of the war in a POW camp.
How did he end up a POW?
His driver took a wrong turn.
Ines Min from the Korea Times wrote a very nice review of War Remains:
“It’s never been a forgotten one for me; not with the lead I still carry in my body.”
Exactly what has or has not been lost in the dredges of time is the Korean War (1950-53). Sixty years later, the battle scenes may not be as visceral for most of us as carrying shrapnel in our flesh — but it remains tangible, emotional and wholly real for many on the peninsula.
Jeffrey Miller, an English teacher at Woosong University in Daejeon, uncovers the horrors of war in his debut novel released late last month, providing an insight into the torrid time.
War Remains follows the tale of Bobby Washkowiak and his grandson Michael, who explores the past in order to find out exactly what happened the day his grandfather went missing.
Alternating from present day to wartime past, the novel unfolds through pulsating battle scenes, personal vignettes and quiet introspection, making use of jumping perspectives in order to create an intimate tale of loyalty, love and livelihood.
You can read the rest of the review and the interview here.