Daejeon James

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Location: Daejeon, South Korea

No bullshit: I'll tell you how it all goes down, every grimey detail!!! Archives at the Bottom.

Friday, April 28, 2006

Korean Consulate--Toronto

Date--April 23, 2006
Place: Korean Consulate (555 Avenue Rd., Toronto)

I've always thought of myself as a pretty layed back fellow, able to take any type of stress that comes my way. I always figured that when things didn't go my way that it was no problem...you win some...you lose some. However, with my upcoming departure to the RoK ensuing I've been a little on edge.

Sarah, my lovely partner, came with me to drop off my information at the Korean Embassy on Monday. My thinking was as follows: Go to the embassy, drop off my shit, come back to London and write an exam. Easy!!!!!


I've never been treated with such disrespect by another human being in my life. Even the bully in grade eight who punched my nose because I stole his tennis ball in the middle of a game of foot-hockey showed me more respect than the young woman who was in charge of accepting VISA applications. I stood at the desk for a good 3 minutes...looked around me and realized there was no one else in line...let alone in the entire room...then finally was asked if I was applying for my VISA. I said yes and she handed me a form and told me to photcopy my passport. EASY!!!!


I filled out the application, but I didn't have my new Korean boss' phone number...so I had to email that in to them later in the day...no biggie. I tried photcopying my passport but their copy machine didn't work. I was starting to get pissed because I waited another 3 minutes in "line" whilst she typed away at her computer completely ignoring my existence. So finally she looked at me...didn't say a word and took my documents.

I said "the copy machine doesn't work"...
she replied with a shrug of incompetance and said "go to receptionist"
so I waited at the receptionist for a good 3 minutes but she was talking on the phone...
So Sarah and I left in a haruuuummmmph to go search dowtown Toronto for a paper/copy shop.

20 minutes later...I'm back at the embassy...fully vented and recomposed...realizing that if I said anything to offend the gate keeper she had the power to screw my ass over...I NEED MY VISA!!! by FRIDAY!!!!! So I walked in calmly ...stood at the desk for 5 minutes....no overexaggeration. Finally she took all my documents and asked for the $65 processing fee. EASY!!!!!!!!


"We only take cash"...Who carries cash in this globalized society??!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
But Sarah was there to save the day...she had convienently gone to the bank while I was photocopying my passport at the UPS store.

Analysis: Why would someone who is representing another culture, people, country....act so inconsiderate to a person who is about to live there for a year for the first time EVER?? Was I not entitled to a "sorry sir...I'll be 3 minutes...be with you in one moment"??? Aparantly not. I started thinking irrationally and conjured up the idea that maybe she was racist? But Sarah made a brilliant and commonsensicle point. That point was, "Every nation, ethnicity, culture, contains BITCHES"

Prologue: I will be picking up my VISA tommorow...it is ready to go...then I fly out on Saturday morning. RoK by Sunday. Teaching by Monday.