At the time I knew little about Pearl Buck and her work with mixed race children and the orphanages who cared for them. Later I learned more about her and the Pearl Buck Foundation. And so I think back about those few minutes that I spent with her and am constantly amazed at the impact that she had on me, in just those few moments and for the rest of my life.
I loved every minute of Korea, but at that time I was starting to feel that I was missing out on stateside life as a teenager……Those of us who were in Yongsan in the late 1970s remember that everything we got was fairly old and outdated by the time we saw it. The only contemporary thing that we got from the states were the latest dance songs from AFKN’s Don Tracy show, which unfortunately aired during the middle of the school day at 10am!
The birthplace of Chocopie, the site of a vibrant art scene and a US military base. While we were walking through Samgakji on a tour, it never occurred to us that Samgakji was all these things.
Once at Samgakji we would be underneath the elevated traffic circle. There were seemingly hundreds of street vendors selling everything from soups and grilled meats, to plastic shoes and clothing, to bicycle parts…..It was dark and chaotic under the traffic circle, and quite exciting for a teenager…