Sunday, December 31, 2006


I was walking home recently, when in sight of our apartment, the buildings around it lit up momentarily, and a thunderous bang followed almost instantly. Had I been in the UK, I would have thought it was a bomb going off, instead my first thought was of a serious road accident. I suppose that tells you something about my social impressions of both countries.

You never really know whether such occurrences are normal in a country until you see the reaction of the local people. As we neared our building, the sight of the locals coming out of their shops and looking around in confusion and alarm suggested that this was not a regular event.

At the side of our apartment building is one of the many telegraph poles which seem to carry just about every wire imaginable - Koreans (along with the Japanese) apparently sharing a dislike for running cables underground as happens in the UK. I have to say that while there may be some method to the madness, the wiring often looks highly dangerous but logic tells you it can't be because otherwise there'd be a lot of accidents. Be this as it may, the telegraph pole nearest our apartment had exploded, depositing a five by ten inch lump of charred wiring unceremoniously in the street below it. A few people stood a respectful distance away staring at it and up at the place it had presumably come from in turn.

It's fortunate no-one was underneath it at the time.

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