June 2nd is Voting Day and we (like most every worker in Korea) have the day off. City politicians have been out in force for the past two weeks. While it's not completely unlike campaigning in the states, we are in Korea, so everything is done with more kitsch and, well, eccentricity .
All campaign posters feature really stiff portraits of the candidate. Each one has a designated number and color scheme (the color scheme I'm not completely certain about, but it seems like it on the streets). I think they each have a number because Korean names are so similar to each other.
Team 2 (green) preps for it's morning out amongst the public. They work in groups picking up garbage, dancing and waving signs, or just standing at busy corners bowing and saying hello to every person and car that passes. One morning, on our way to the gym, we saw a group that was all women, but for one man with a whistle. Every time a car passed he would blow the whistle and they'd all bow in unison.
Trucks, like this one for candidate number 9, crawl down every street in town. They blare theme songs and political promises.
Candidate number 8 had quite a team out this morning. A woman we know from the gym was with them. She came over and tried to talk to us about it, her volume increasing each time we looked confused and told her we didn't understand. The belief that yelling can break down language barriers is definitely world wide. She ultimately gave up and sent us on our way.
I don't know much about South Korean elections or politics. I tried to find out what type of elections are happening on the 2nd, but I Google didn't have much to offer.
I've been requested to write an article about my experiences here and touching on the North Korea situation, so I've been doing some reading. I'll most likely post some thoughts on that this weekend. If you have any information to share, please do so.