A few weeks ago, (when this was originally written, but probably a few months ago now) our preschool was chosen to attend a special event, the Ding Dong Dang show. It's a famous children's show here in Korea that is filmed live in front of an audience. It was in the afternoon, and most of the childrens parents came to pick them up to experience the show with their children. Because we couldn't leave until all the parents who were going to pick up their children came, we ended up getting to the show late enough to get nose bleed seats, or the equivalent of. I thought the whole set up was strange. It was a childrens show and yet the seating was plastic chairs, not any type of leveled seating, which I thought would be required for a childrens show. My lap, along with many other parents and teachers laps, showed marks from the wear and tear of little feet trying to balance, just to see a piece of the action on the stage so far away. I'm not sure if any child could actually see without standing on their parents (or teachers) lap.
For most of the show, the happenings on the stage was a mystery to me as I don't speak Korean. But even the children who's first language is Korean were bored much of the time. There was a LOT of dead time. One moment, however, stood out as a truly rousing twinkle when another teacher and I were called onto stage for a dance off. Yes, you read that right, a dance off.
In Korea, blond hair, and round eyes pretty much stick out like rudolf's red nose. So when we raised our hand for the chance to win a prize, we were obviously spotted and chosen quickly. We were brought onto the stage, and luckily, the MC spoke some English, enough so to communicate. We were asked first a few questions, and then asked to say some Korean words. Now, I'm a big girl, and I can admit, that as far as learning the Korean language, I have been an utter failure. And its all my own fault, I'll take full blame for my lack of initiative, but I would like to say in my defense, that whenever I did try and pronounce Korean words, even simple ones, I was stared at as if I were an alien and NEVER understood. It kind of puts a damper on learning when NO ONE can ever understand the words you do know. So when the MC asked us to speak some Korean words, the ten vocabulary words that I know flew out and fluttered into the wind. Literally my mind went completely blank. I recovered slightly, but the experience was terrifying, much more intimidating even when they asked us to dance in front of at least a thousand people.
My dancing was far from amazing... but we had a fun time, and we even got a prize. I didn't need any of it so I gave it away, but the experience was unique and one to write home about.
ding dong dang video