Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Blog 17 - 25 May

Tonight is the first time I've been home alone for over two weeks - but then who's counting? We've really loved having our first visitors and this blog will feature our Canberra friend and past blog editor, Ronis.

We were invited to the third Arab Cultural Festival in Seoul where we saw the Lebanese Molayya Folk Dance group perform at the National Theatre. Here the Lebanese Ambassador and his wife hold the flag with the famous cedar of Lebanon.

After the show we ate traditional Korean BBQ with our international delegation including Italian, Korean, American and Irish and Lebanese Australian.

I was later invited to afternoon tea with the wife of the Ambassador of Lebanon, Majida Mostapha by my friend Hyon O'Brien, who is a retired librarian and writes a column for the Korean Times. http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/opinon/2010/05/137_65896.html

Can you see the minooshi, ftoya and Lebanese coffee? What a treat after almost 4 months with no Lebanese food.
Check out the cedar of Lebanon cups and plates and the handmade chocolates with the initials of Majida's daughter, Marina and husband. Four hundred were made for each guest at Marina's recent wedding in Beirut ! interestingly there are two Lebanese in Korea - the Ambassador and his wife! The post is maintained here due to strategic diplomatic and trade relationships.

Ronis broke our favourite vase so we sent her off the the Seoul History Museum to fix it. Here she is mending the ancient treasure in the 'hands on' children's section with the assistance of her friend from Melbourne, Trish, who we also stayed with us for a few days.

Our visit to the Quakers in Daejon (a city of 1.5 million 150 kms south of Seoul) was wonderful thanks to the generous hosting of Chonyon Kim and Jong Hee Lee. Thank you both for the food, hospitality and welcoming We spent lots of time on the floor in traditional Korean style and ate, slept and had Friends meeting on the floor. The Quaker meeting was wonderful and had a record number of people (about 25) followed by chatting and more food! Trish's daughter, Erin and her boyfriend Dong Kyon met us there - great reunion.

Sitting in silence on the floor for an hour was quite an ordeal for us foreigners! Ronis spoke about some Australian peace projects and Joon translated.

Damien is presenting at a conference in Sozhou near Shanghai so we're going to China for 5 days. No blog next week, however stay posted for some photos of this ancient garden city.

1 comment:

Vanessa said...

Hi Susan
Well it's been a while since I logged onto see what you are up to - your life seems so full of vibrant and interesting people and experiences (not to mention the food!). You seem to have adapted so well. Life here in Adelaide is good - I am enjoying the onset of winter. Your knitting has inspired me to start a couple of very small basic projects of my own - it is amazing how with a wee bit of practice the needles start flying! I only wish you were here for me to consult :). On the work front we have shifted into the new building and are all adapting to life in an open plan environment - all good so far. I hope this finds you well.
Kind regards

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