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Korean Shopping and out to Eat

We are Americans who live in Korea.  Living in Korea, is not hard for Americans.  In this blog, I plan to write and put pictures so that Americans or others who are interested in Korea can see how we live.  We have been here for 12 years, so we have learned a lot that will help people who are interested in coming here.  We will take the readers with us as we move about in Korea and teach them how to do it if they want to do it.  Today, we went grocery shopping and out to eat, so I will tell you about our trip out.

To begin with, we live on the 9th floor of a very tall apartment building.  When we lived in Romania, we lived on the 9th floor for a while, and we thought we were very high up, and the building was 10 floors high, but the 9th floor is nothing here in Korea.  The first year we came here, we lived on the 24th floor of an apartment building in a small town, and we were not at the top.  Koreans build the tallest buildings in the world.  When they need a tall building in a place like Dubai, they bring Korean builders in because they know how to build tall buildings safely.  They have such tall buildings because the peninsula is small.  Everything is crowded in Korea, and the land space is limited.  All the apartment buildings have elevators, and it is common as in our building to have two elevators. One elevator only goes to the even numbered floors, and the other elevator only goes to the odd numbered floors.  As we get on the elevator on our floor, we notice a suit case sitting by the elevator we don’t use.  Someone has stored it there because no one will come out that door, and it isn’t in the way.  In America, we would never just leave a suitcase in the hallway like that, but it is okay in Korea.  No one will take it. If someone took it, they would consider it stealing. Children in America have a saying about things just left around, “Finders keepers, losers weepers,” but that is not a saying here. You just don’t mess with or touch anything that isn’t yours even if the owner is not there.

After we go down our elevator, you can see the signs by the elevators telling you which elevator to take from the bottom floor. You can also see advertisements written in Korean on those signs. Those are advertisements put there by real estate people who handle the apartments. You can see it below the signs telling which elevator to ride as well as under the mirror, two different real estate agents. You also see a sign that says CCTV. That means that you are on closed circuit TV. You are being watched.  These TVs are everywhere in Korea.  About 80% of your life in Korea is on film.  As we walk out, there is an office with windows. The man inside is a guard.  He stays there watching everyone coming and going. He knows what is going on. If you have trouble, you ask him for help. If you park your car wrong, he will call you up and tell you he doesn’t like how you parked your car, and you must come and park it again.  He also helps you with another problem in the parking lot I will discuss in the next paragraph.

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If the parking lot is full when you come, but you must park, you may park your car in front of other people’s cars.  If you do this, a couple of things are required.  First, all cars in Korea must have the driver’s telephone number displayed on the dashboard for people to see. If your car is causing trouble where it is, they will call you to move your car.  You just have to be patient.  If you are in bed, you jump up, throw your clothes on, and run out and move your car. Whatever you are doing, you must move because if you don’t, they become irate and mean with you if you don’t move right away.  You have the right to expect them to move right away if they are in front of your car too. You just have to learn to have patience and do it their way.  If you park it the way it is in my picture, then, you must leave your car in neutral and leave the parking brake off. In the picture, you can see a broken brick.  In this particular apartment building, the parking lot slopes, so they will put these broken bricks under their tires to keep the cars from rolling.  If you come out and someone has parked in front of you like that, all you do is move the brick and push the car out of the way.  If it is too hard to push, this is when you can go back and ask the guard to help you push the car.

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Now that we are outside, I decided to take a picture for you to show you just how big our apartment building is.  I kept backing off and backing off in the parking lot to get a good shot of it from the bottom to the top, but I just didn’t have the space to back up and get the top and bottom at the same time. This tells you these buildings are huge.  They don’t have earthquakes like in Japan. Japan doesn’t have much land space, but they can’t build buildings like this because of their earth quakes. Here in Korea, the biggest natural problem they have is the typhoon, and it is good to be in one of these buildings during a typhoon.  The wind can’t touch these buildings because they are made of concrete, and they are huge.  If it floods, and you live up on the second or higher floor, you are in business. No water will get in your house.  However, we had to learn something about living on the first floor the hard way because in the last apartment we lived in, we wanted the bottom floor.  The bottom floor is cheaper, and not many people want to live there.  When it floods, the water comes in.  When the snow begins melting, the water comes in.  When it is hot and rainy outside, the apartment on the bottom floor may start getting black mold on the walls.  The drainage system is not good in these apartments, and if you are on the bottom floor, you may have water standing in your bathroom floor. It is normal to spray the bathroom floors in Korea to clean them because they are completely tiled with a drain in the middle of the floor. In fact, if there is no bathtub, often, there is just a shower nozzle coming out of the sink for your to shower with, and you flood your bathroom when you shower.  Water in Korean bathroom floors is normal.  However, when we lived in Romania, living on the bottom floor of the apartment building was good because it meant that you would never have water problems, but here in Korea, living on the bottom floor says you will have too much water that will give you problems.

If you look at the outside of the building, you will see that every apartment has an enclosed balcony.  The balcony is not heated like the rest of the house, but it will be enclosed, and Koreans use these either to grow plants, to hang clothes to dry, or for storage.  In many apartments, they put the washing machine on the balcony.  If you also look on the outside of the building, you will see metal units attached to the outside of the balconies.  Those are air conditioners.  They don’t have central air in Korea, but they do have wall air conditioners, and in some cases, free standing air conditioners that stand in the corner of a room. They call these “air con.”  If you use the whole word, they will have no idea what you are talking about.  Many Koreans have air conditioning, but not everyone uses it because the air conditioners are electric.  If your electric bill gets too high, the electric company doubles it to discourage you from using so much electricity, so many people who have air conditioners will hardly use them even though it can get very steamy here in summer.

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As we get in our car to go, you will see that I have an SM3.  An SM3 is a Renault built by Samsung. In the beginning, I didn’t drive a car.  Many Koreans and foreigners use public transportation which is really good here. Public transportation is cheap and efficient in Korea.  In America, only the poorest people ride a bus to work, but it is not that way here. Often, even people who have cars opt out to use public transportation on a daily basis and save their cars just for family outings and things like that because the public transportation here is really good.  There are buses, subways, and taxis.  They are all cheap, and I will do another blog teaching you how to use them.  I used them in the beginning, and they are healthy.  Everyone usually loses weight when they first come to Korea because they are used to going everywhere in a car, but when you are walking to the bus stop or the subway station, you lose weight.  At one point, an American called me and sold me his second hand car. I was thinking like an American back then. The car was cheap, it ran, and it would make our lives more convenient, so I bought it.

It was better to have a car, but I ran into some problems. First, Korea is complicated to get around in with a car.  When we were going with the subways and buses, it was easy to know where to go, but I was always lost with my car. I was always calling my friends, telling them where I was and asking how to get home or to where I was going.  I had to learn that everyone who drives in Korea needs a GPS, a navigation system or they will get lost.  I bought a GPS from the same guy who sold me the car that was in English. That was a mistake.  The way the Koreans spell things in English makes no sense to Americans in the beginning until we get used to it, and I was always confused about where I was with that GPS.  Finally, the transmission went out on that old car, and a Korean friend of mine decided she was going to take over and teach me how it should be done in Korea.  Koreans don’t buy second hand cars. They buy new ones. They also buy the newest technology.  Everything must be up to date in Korea. I told her I wanted something cheap, and she told me she could get me a good new car that was cheap on gas with cheap car payments. I told her I also wanted a small car because there are many very crowded roads in Korea, and a smaller car would be easier to get around in. She wouldn’t even consider showing me a car as small as I wanted because she said they were dangerous.  She took me to a new car show room and insisted I had to buy one of those cars, and she wasn’t going to help me find anything else.  She actually guided me in a good way,  I now have a car that is cheap on gas, has cheap car payments, has a good GPS, and has a backup camera.  A backup camera is a must in Korea. The parking spots are smaller in Korea than in America, and having a backup camera helps you park.  Trying to go into a parking space frontwards at times is just impossible, but you can back up into it with a back up camera easily.  With the new car, I had a special service that I could call whenever I had car trouble. I will explain the car services in another blog, but she guided me right.  Now, we head out shopping in our SM3.

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The place we are going is EMart, the Korean WalMart.  It is like a super WalMart with everything available in one store. There are other stores like it in Korea, but usually EMart is the cheapest.  At times, we go to Home Plus or Lotte Mart. They are comparable to EMart, but not quite as cheap, but you can find things there that are not at EMart.  Home Plus has a lot of imports from England because it is actually owned by a British company.  WalMart was in Korea the first year we came, but EMart bought them out.  Like our apartment building, EMart is several stories high.  Instead of a big parking lot, there is a parking garage.  These stores and parking garages are not just in Seoul, but in every small town too.  We end up on the fourth floor of the parking garage because everything before that is crowded. Today is actually Saturday, so the store is more crowded. If we come through the week, there are less cars and less people because everyone is as work through the week, but today, everyone is out.

Like in our apartment building, we must start at the elevators.  I took a picture of something for you to see that is on every elevator in Korea.  They are warning signs not to touch the door of the elevator or lean on the door because you could fall and get hurt.  As we get in the elevator, you will here either nerocabnida or olacabnida in a sweet Korean lady’s voice.  “nerocabnida” means “going down,” and “olacabnida” means “going up.”  We actually begin by going down to the third floor.  There is usually a food court on the third floor of this particular EMart, but they have blocked most of it off.  This is something normal in Korea. Usually, in this food court, you get the choice of Burger King, Baskin Robbins, and any number of traditional Korean restaurants, but they have blocked the Korean restaurants off. I took a picture of the sign explaining it will be open again in June.  We are often disappointed when they do this. They just randomly close off a place you have been going for a long time and enjoying.  The business isn’t bad, but they like to upgrade everything in Korea.  As with my car, they like everything new.  Over at the mall, there was a wonderful restaurant called “Burger Hunter” where they had big luscious burgers and homemade potato chips, and we often when there with our Korean friends, but one day, they blocked it off. We had no idea what would be there or why they would block off such a popular restaurant. When they were done, they replaced it with a corn dog restaurant and a Mexican restaurant.  We go to those restaurants occasionally, but we miss our hamburger restaurant.  As for this food court, they still have Baskin Robbins because Baskin Robbins is very, very popular everywhere, all over Korea. It is is every little town, and sometimes on every street corner.  Koreans love ice cream. We also find Burger King.  Burger King and McDonalds both are popular in Korea.

We decided to eat at Burger King.  When you order at Burger King or McDonalds, you have a choice of how to order now.  You can either talk to the person at the cash register who speaks just enough English to take your order if you can’t speak Korean (However, we have been here for 12 years, so we speak to them in Korean), or you can use one of the new machines. I took a picture of the ordering machines for you, but I haven’t messed with them and never use them to order although many people do.  After you have ordered, they give you a piece of paper with a number, and they have a board where you wait for your number to come up, and then your order is ready.

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After you eat, you are expected to recycle.  There is a trash can, but there are also places to dump your ice, put your cups, and put your lids and straws.  Recycling in a really big thing in Korea. This culture thinks that if you are a good person, you will recycle.  My son in law recycles in front of our apartment building once a week. I did it in the beginning when we first came because they encouraged me to do it, bu my son in law has taken over, and I let him. In one of my blogs, I will show you the way they recycle at the apartment buildings.

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As we leave the food court, we pass an Italian restaurant.  It has a display case with models of the food. This is normal both in Korea and Japan. When the food court was open, they had models of the food with prices.  You chose which one you wanted, then went to the lady and told her which one you wanted. You paid for it, then she gave you a number, and you sat down and waited, looking at all the Korean restaurants knowing your number would come up on the sign board on top of one of them, and then when your number came up, you would go to that restaurant to get your food. It works the same in all the food courts here, but if there is Burger King, McDonalds, Baskin Robbins, or something like that, they are separate even though they are part of the food court.

We keep walking and go past clothing and jewelry.  As I said, this place is like a super WalMart and has everything. To get to the food because we are grocery shopping, we must go to another floor, so we take a moving sidewalk down.  At the bottom, we see the pharmacy, the “yakgook.” Yakgooks are everywhere, and it is very convenient to get Tylenol, band aids, etc., and to fill prescriptions in Korea. Next to the Yakgook, you also see a place where you can buy glasses, like a super WalMart. However, there is something I took a picture of for you that you can find here that you can’t find in American WalMarts that is very convenient.  If you lose weight or someone gives you clothes that just don’t fit, or just whatever reason, your clothes don’t fit, you can bring them to a place like this. They are all over the place.  They fix your clothes for you, and it is cheaper than buying new clothes.

We go on toward the place where the food is with our shopping cart on the next moving sidewalk.  There are many, many things available.  I took a picture of the candy isle. There is also soda pop. There is a bakery where you can buy all kinds of nice bread, cakes, pizza, muffins, bagels, croissants, etc.  We continue. You can buy already cooked, dried rice in small plastic bowls. When you take these home, all you have to do is open them up, add a few drops of water, cover them again, and put them in the microwave for a little, and you will have a nice hot bowl of rice.  My son in law says he doesn’t even add water to his.  To go along with these, there are several other things that you could just heat and eat to make your busy life easier.  These are just many packages of different dishes. My son especially liked me to buy the curry rice packages for him when he was here. My son in law likes the meat ball packages, the steak packages, etc.  On the opposite side from all this, there is cereal, all kinds like in America. We also recently got toaster pop ups, and that makes my daughter happy.

We go on through the store. We go past the coffee and tea isle where they have all kinds.  We come to the isle where they sell peanut butter, jelly, and even marshmallow cream.  On this isle, we can usually find imported canned goods of all kinds like canned fruit or pinto beans.  We can also find lots and lots of cans of tuna.  We don’t continue to the next isles because we really don’t need what is there, but in case you are wondering, there is sugar, flour, mayonnaise, ketchup, pancake syrup, cooking oil, etc. There is no shortening, but if we want solid shortening, we use butter.  We are headed for the butter and cheese isle where there are all kinds of cheeses from all over the world as well as all kinds of butter.  Next, we pick up milk, and you can get low fat milk. You don’t have to drink it with the fat in it if you don’t want to.

We continue on and see all kinds of exotic things. They have meat prepared for you to buy and cook yourself, but I have no idea what it is. When we get to the regular meat isle, we always look for chicken, pork, and hamburger. These are always much cheaper at EMart than in a place like Home Plus. Chicken is always there. Pork is always there, but hamburger is not always there. Even if hamburger is there, it may be so expensive that we won’t touch it.  If it is Korean beef, they price it off the charts crazy.  If they import it from Australia, it is half the price of Korean beef.  We never buy the Korean beef, but always the Australian beef.  At times, the beef is so expensive, but we still want the kinds of dishes that take ground meat. I have used ground pork in those circumstances. When you make spaghetti and meatballs for example, you really can’t tell a big difference between beef or pork because you have put your condiments, bread crumbs, and eggs in the meatballs and then covered them with spaghetti sauce.  The taste isn’t so different that it isn’t doable.  By the way, you can buy already made spaghetti sauce in jars.  We have tried the Korean brands as well as the imported brands, and we like the imported brands best, but we can’t get them in EMart. We have to go to Home Plus to get them. You can also use the ground pork for taco meat.  You can buy tortillas here as well as long horn or cheddar cheese which means you can make tacos, but usually, they will have to be made with flour tortillas instead of corn because corn tortillas are only found in import shops here, but you can find flour tortillas in EMart and Home Plus. Sometimes at Home Plus, you can buy packages of spices already mixed together for tacos or fajitas. If you want refried beans in your fajitas, you will have to learn to make them from scratch before you come.

After we leave the meat isle, we go on and see all kids of exotic things the Koreans eat.  We took some pictures for you to see.  We don’t know how to fix any of this stuff.  We go on to the vegetable and fruits.  There are all kinds of things to see here.  There are things we would consider normal, and some you may have never seen.  My daughter begins snapping pictures.  In one of the pictures, you can see plantains, cooking bananas.  When we lived in Nigeria, we used to buy these.  You slice them up and fry them in butter and put salt on them, and they are a great snack.  She also takes a picture of chamwee, or as some Koreans say chamway.  These are just two pronunciations we have heard for the same thing. They are small yellow melons.  I have never seen them in any other country, but they are good.  There is also a picture here of the Korean pears. They are big and round unlike American pears. They also keep for weeks on end in the fridge like apples unlike American pears.  They don’t bruise or go bad and soft quickly like American pears, and they are delicious.  There is also a shot of what Americans would call tangerines, but the Koreans call them kyul.  They are extremely popular here. They come from Jeju Island, the Korean Hawaii, an island to the complete south of the peninsula.  Many Koreans go there on vacation, and they bring these back with them.  These little tangerines are everywhere. Everyone has them. Everyone eats them.  When I get on a bus with other professors or with students to go somewhere, someone is always passing out kyul, their small tangerines. After class, often, students bring me a kyul as a gift like they bring apples to American teachers.  Kyul are just extremely, extremely popular in Korea.

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Across from the fruits and vegetables, there is a special section.  These are supposed to be fruits and vegetables grown in a healthier way than the regular fruits and vegetables, organic, and they are more expensive.

After we leave the fruits and vegetables, we go past some more Korean delicacies. There is a picture here of ginseng. Koreans love ginseng.  They even put it in candy.  You can get on a bus and smell ginseng products around you, especially if there are old people.  Korea is the ginseng capital of the world.  They believe it is extremely healthy.  They were pushing it on me so much when I first got here, that I looked it up on the internet, and it doesn’t have as many special things about it that the Koreans think it does according to what I read, but it doesn’t stop them from propagating it, believing in it, and using a lot of it.  There are also pictures here of dried fish.  From what I understand,  you are supposed fry these, but I haven’t ever seen it done or know how to do it myself.

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We also go past the paper products and the soap isles. We stop and take a picture of the soft plastic bag like laundry soap containers.  You can buy the regular packages here like in the States, but they also make these packages for you to use as refills for your heavy plastic bottle of detergent to make it cheaper.

Next, we head back upstairs on the moving sidewalk.  We check out at the checkout stand.  The store is crowded, so many people are checking out.  At the checkout stand, the woman will say to you “punktul dirilkayo?”  She is asking if you want a shopping bag.  You can answer in English if you say, “yeah” because that means “yes” in Korean.  If you want more than one, you will have to tell her, but she won’t speak English at all, so this is the first place you will probably have no choice but learn the Korean numbers.  In many situations, you won’t need Korean, but to check out, it is much easier if you learn just a little.  As for us, on this day, we don’t need shopping bags because we bought some with us. We have to pay for shopping bags in Korea.  I took a picture of our shopping bags.  The strawberry has a shopping bag inside, and many people carry these with them.  If you look at the blue ones, there are pictures on them.  They show you can shop and use them for trash bags.  You can only buy trash bags at the cash registers in Korea.  They have separate trash bags also that can’t be used as shopping bags, but they can’t be bought at EMart. You can buy bigger trash bags if you go to a local “super” which is what they call a small shop close to your house, but you will have to know how to ask for them.  You say “tsuregi punctul juseyo” which means please give me a trash bag.  They come in all different sizes, and you can either buy one or a package, and in the beginning, you will think they are expensive.  However, you won’t have to pay for a trash service. We actually use our bags that double as shopping bags for our trash bags. You have to buy the bags in your neighborhood or they won’t like it.  Every apartment building has a place where you deposit your trash in these special bags, and it is picked up once a week like the recycling.

Now, we are back in our car and leaving the parking garage. There are so many cars, there is a traffic jam coming out of the parking garage, and we just have to be patient. We are all waiting perched on a slope. It is hard to perch your car on a slope during a traffic jam. One false move, and you have hit another car.  Finally, we get to the bottom, and there is a little booth.  Luckily, at EMart, they don’t charge you to park, although, when they first put these booths in, they did, but now, they just count how long you were there and how many cars have been in the parking lot. However, if you go to a big fancy department store like Hyundai Department Store in Mokdong, you will have to collect every receipt you receive.  You must prove to them you have been shopping and not just using their parking garage for something else because parking can become a really big deal in Korea. If you have bought enough, you will not have to pay to get out of the parking garage at Hyundai Department Store, but if you have not bought enough for the amount of time you have been inside, then you must pay to get out.  I have actually found a way around all this nonsense.  When we go over there, the first temptation is to park on the pink floor of the parking garage because it has flowers, statues, etc., and everything is painted in pink for women to park there, but I don’t.  I go all the way to the bottom of the parking garage, in the deepest basement.  Very few cars go down there, so when it is time to leave, they may not have posted anyone at the gate and won’t have anyone there to charge you anything as you go out if you are lucky.

Our shopping trip is finished, and we head back for our apartment building.  When I get home, I plan on blogging before I forget what we did. On the way home, we talk about all the other things we do or can do in Korea that foreigners will enjoy reading about, so this isn’t the end of my blogging, just one blog.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This Question Came to My Inbox: “Is it Worthwhile to Study Computers in S. Korea?”

Yes, adamantly, yes it is worthwhile to study computers in S. Korea. However, you will have to learn to speak Korean first. Korean computers are in Korean, and Koreans have a lot of their own websites in Korean. They also have special e-mail programs that are Korean programs. Anything they can do on the computer, they will. Korea loves the computer, and they have a lot of good education for people who study computers.

There are PC bangs on almost every street. PC bangs are places you can rent a computer by the hour. Kids usually go there to play computer games. When I first got there, before I could get internet hooked up, I rented them to send e-mails to America. Photo by Alexander Kovalev on Pexels.com

I can’t emphasize enough how important computers are in S. Korea. They have become a very computer centered culture. This includes their cell phones. Everyone uses computers and cell phones. Have you heard of Hanmail or Kakao talk? Those are communication programs only used in S. Korea. Hanmail is email and Kakao talk is a chat line. They also have their own emoticons that are not used in other countries. At my university, they had the teachers keeps all their records on computers, and someone had to come up with those programs. We had to figure our grades on the computer, report our grades on the computer, report on counseling sessions on the computer, give students assignments on the computer, etc. S. Koreans think everything begins and ends with computers. The also have some of the best internet in the world.

After Korean computer majors graduate, they aren’t finished. They can be certified in several fields of the computer by also attending the computer hogwans (private schools.)Photo by Vantha Thang on Pexels.com

There are several different kinds of computer degrees in S. Korea. After you get your computer degrees, they also have several private schools that even people with computer majors go to so they can be certified in other fields of the computer. You can become certified in several fields of the computer, not just in the field that you have a major in.

Their computer repair shops are a good place for people interested in computers to hang out to learn more. Photo by Retha Ferguson on Pexels.com

There are computer repair shops everywhere. My daughter likes computers, and she is a computer major. Before she ever became a computer major, she used to go to the computer repair shops and just hang out watching the guys repairing computers and asking questions. She learned a lot. She can actually do a lot of things on the computer than other computer majors can’t because of her time spent watching those computer repair men in the computer repair shops.

Koreans design a lot of computer games. Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

How many people do you actually know that have a job designing computer games? In America, it seems like something that is off somewhere else and out of most of our social realms. However, a lot of companies in S. Korea design computer games, and I know a couple of guys who design computer games who used to be computer majors at the university where I taught. They are Korean, though, and the person who does it needs to be fluent in Korean and also speak English.

Korean computers will be written in Korean. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

S. Koreans major into electronics. They are the electronic hub of the world. there is a huge electronic market in Seoul that sells any kinds of electronics that you can or can’t find elsewhere. It is several many storied buildings. Of course studying computers in S. Korea is a good idea, if you speak Korean. If you don’t plan on studying Korean, it would just be too hard because of the computers being in Korean and all the Korean websites. I know you can change a computer’s language and the computer professors speak English because they have to be able to function on the world wide web. However, the primary language of instruction would be Korean.

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Safe in the Arms of Jesus (イエスの腕の中で安全)

こんいちは。(Hello.) お元気ですか?(How are you?) 私はあなたが元気であることを願っています. (I hope you are well.) 今日、世の中には非常に多くの問題があります。(There are so many problems in the world today.) 私たちは簡単に不安を感じることができます。(We can feel insecure easily.) しかし、私は常に安全な場所を持っています。(However, I have a place that is always safe.) 神はわたしたちを愛してます(God loves us.)彼は私たちのために安全な場所を作った。(He made a place for us that is safe.)

Safe in the Arms of Jesus

イエスの腕の中で安全

Photo by Juhasz Imre on Pexels.com

Safe in the arms of Jesus,

イエスの腕の中で安全,

Photo by Josh Willink on Pexels.com

Safe on his gentle breast,

彼の優しい胸に安全,

Photo by Designecologist on Pexels.com

There, by his love, overshadowed,

そこでの彼の愛に影を落とす

Photo by Laura Garcia on Pexels.com

Sweetly my soul shall rest.

歌詞の意味: 私の魂は甘く休む

Photo by Anastasia Zhenina on Pexels.com

Hark! ’tis the voice of angels,

聞く!天使の声です

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Borne in a song to me,

歌詞の意味: 彼らは私のために歌を歌っています。

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Over the fields of glory,

栄光の分野を越えて

Photo by Kellie Churchman on Pexels.com

Over the jasper sea.

ジャスパー海の上に

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Safe in the arms of Jesus,

イエスの腕の中で安全,

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Safe on his gentle breast,

彼の優しい胸に安全,

Photo by Kristina Paukshtite on Pexels.com

There by his love overshadowed,

そこでの彼の愛に影を落とす

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Sweetly my soul to rest.

歌詞の意味: 甘い私の魂が休む

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The Portrait of a Prejudiced Man

With all the talk about being prejudiced, I thought I would tell you about a truly prejudiced man I once knew. I first met him when he was in jail. I had been overseas with my parents. My mother was introducing us to all the members of her family. She had a brother in jail, and she took us to the jail to meet him. His name was Jack. He was one of my mother’s younger brothers. He was in jail because at 17, he had been with a group of guys who robbed a liquor store. The other guys insisted that Jack had been the one who held the gun, and that was what got them out of prison and landed him there.

The first time I met Jack, he was in jail. Photo by Jimmy Chan on Pexels.com

Jack didn’t understand so many things in life!! When he got out of prison, I was 19 years old, dropped out of college, and staying at my grandmother’s house so I could work in a factory, and he had also decided to stay there and get a job. He described himself as “the black sheep of the family.” He got a job as a welder and was really proud of how much money he was making. He had been married before he went to prison, but his wife slept with another man while was in prison and had a baby by the other man, and he refused to go back to her.

Jack sang and played his guitar, and he was a popular performer. Photo by 42 North on Pexels.com

He spent a lot of time at bars playing his guitar. He was a popular performer. He liked taking girls to motels to sleep with them after he went to the bars. He said he didn’t bring them back to Grandma’s house to sleep with them because of respect for me. However, one morning, he brought one of them to home purposefully to meet me after he had slept with her in a motel. I couldn’t figure out why he went back on the idea of keeping the women away from me.

Jack beat a buy up just because he was black. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

One day, Grandma had made dinner for us. Jack, Grandma, and I were sitting around the table having dinner, and Jack was bragging about what he had done at the bar. He said a black man had come into his bar, and he beat the guy up and told him to get out. He said he couldn’t believe the gall of a black man thinking he could come into his bar. I spoke up. I told him it was wrong. I told him you don’t hit someone just because of the color of their skin. He looked at me very seriously and said, “Are you a women’s libber?” like a woman wanting liberty was something bad, so I just told him I wasn’t a women’s libber.

Jack was screaming, and my grandmother was crying. Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

I went to church every time the doors were open. I was the only one in the house who went to church. I came in one day, and Jack was raking Grandma over the coals. Grandma was sitting in a rocking chair ringing her hands and crying her eyes out. Jack was screaming at her that she needed to go to church with me because she was old and it wasn’t that much longer before she would be dead. I asked him about himself, and he said he didn’t need to go because he was still young. At one point, he tried to talk me out of going to church and go to the bar with him instead, but I refused.

Jack carried a gun illegally. Photo by Derwin Edwards on Pexels.com

Jack was always mad at the cops. He felt harassed when the cops stopped him to make sure he wasn’t carrying a gun. He was on parole, and he kept a gun in the glove compartment of his car.

Living in that house with Jack in it was a nightmare. I ended up quitting my job and going back to my parents house even though there were no jobs there.

They were afraid Jack was going to blow their house up. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Later, after I went back to college, I heard some terrible things about Jack. He had threatened to blow my parent’s house up, and my dad had stayed up all night long guarding the house in fear that Jack would show up with dynamite. Another time, he invited one of my cousins to go to the bar with him, and afterward, he didn’t care that he was his niece, he tried to get her to go to a hotel and sleep with him. She had her head on her shoulders and refused.

Jack went after his brother with a knife. Photo by Lukas on Pexels.com

Another time, the family was having a party. They were at one of my other uncle’s houses. He kicked my other uncle’s dog off the porch. My other uncle said something about it, and Jack went after him. There was a big brawl in the yard, and one of Jack’s many women had to go to his pickup and get his gun to separate them.

Jack beat up his wife for wearing shorts. Photo by Athena on Pexels.com

Once, I had a month off of school, and I went home to spend it with my parents. Jack had moved his trailer in next door to my parents. He had been beating on his wife because she wore shorts. He told her that I was respectable, and that I would never wear shorts, and he wanted her to be respectable. He beat her up for putting on shorts. If he came home from work and she had been sick laying on the couch all day, he beat her up because she hadn’t done any housework. He had finally gotten a wife, but he was always beating on her.

Jack owned a bar he wanted to make into a church. He was confused and made no sense. Photo by Chris F on Pexels.com

He wanted to be “respectable” so bad! He owned a bar, and he went to the bar one day and announced he was going to turn his bar into a church house. He was just so mixed up! I guess I might of tried to help him, but I was several years younger than he was and scared of him. When he beat up the black man, it was just an excuse to beat someone up. He liked beating people up. It really didn’t matter to him that the man was black. He just realized there were people in the room that would support him because the man was black. He wanted to beat on someone.

Our family has a lot of curly black hair because we have an ancestor who came from Africa, but Jack didn’t know. Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

I wonder what he would have said had he known the younger generation of our family has figure out that we are part black. A fourth cousin told me he and his brother did a historic research of the records of our family. We are descended from an American slave from Africa and an American president, Thomas Jefferson. They had a child, and when he went into politics, they were told not to take their child with them because the baby would never be accepted. They left the child with a Cherokee family, my family. Some other cousins who didn’t know anything about this study did a genetic testing of their blood, and they were amazed when they learned that they had ancestry from Africa. This is why Jack had such curly black hair and also why I have such curly black hair. America is a melting pot. What Jack did made no sense at all. The next time you look at a good person and begin wondering if they are prejudiced, they probably aren’t. The kind of people who are prejudiced make no sense, like Jack.

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Wake Up, Oh Sleeper (잠을 일어나주세요)

인녕하세요. (Hello.) 잘지내요? (How are you?) 내가 괜찬아요. (I am fine.) 하지만, 오늘은 많은 새성에 않 괜찬아요. (However, today, many people are not okay.) 다른 사람들은 그들을 나쁜 취급해요. (Other people treat them bad.) 아이들이 자라면서 그들은 서로에 대해 불평했어요.

(When my kids were growing up, they complained against one another.) 그들은 항상 내가 판사가되고 그들 사이에서 선택하기를 바라며 나에게 왔어요. (They always came to me wanting me to be the judge and choose between them.) 각자는 다른 사람이 나쁜 사람이라고 생각했어요. (Each thought the other was a bad guy.)

제가 아이들에게 가르친 가장 중요한 교훈은 여러분이 옳은 일을 하는 한 다른 남자가 한 무슨 짓을 했는지는 중요하지 않다는 것이었어요. (The most important lesson I taught my kids was it doesn’t matter what the other guy did, as long as you do the right thing.)

그리스도인으로서 우리는 세상에서 일어나는 모든 나쁜 일들을 돌아봐요. (As Christians, we look around at all the bad happening in the world.) 어떻게 처리합니까? (How do we handle it?) 우리는 일어서서 무슨 일이 일어나고 있기 때문에 더 많은 문제를 일으킵니까? (Do we stand up and cause even more trouble because of what is happening?) 우리는 다시 주장합니까? (Do we argue back?) 아니면 그리스도께서 우리를 대적하는 다른 사람들에 대해 걱정하지 말라고 격려해 주시는 평안과 사랑의 삶을 계속 이어나갈 수도 있을까요? (Or, perhaps, do we continue on the life of peace and love that Christ has encouraged us to continue on and not worry about other people doing something against us?) “이 사람은 나쁘다”라고 말하는 것으로 정당화되는 트러블 메이커가 될 수 있습니까? 그들은 처벌할 필요가!”? (Do we become a trouble maker feeling justified by saying, “this person is bad. They need to be punished!”?)

학대가 일어나는 것을 보았을 때, 나는 일어서서 두 사람에게 싸움을 그만두라고 말했고, 그들은 그들이 하고 있는 일을 깨닫고 멈췄어요. (When I saw abuse taking place, I stood up and told the two to stop fighting, and they realized what they were doing and stopped.) 나는 나쁜 사람을 치료하지 않았어요. (I didn’t treat anyone bad.) 나는 침착하게 이야기하고 그들의 반대 방향으로 보냈요. (I talked calmly and sent them in their opposite directions.) 나 참여 하지 또는 다른 나쁜 사람을 치료 실제로 일. (Me not taking part nor treating anyone else bad actually worked.)

사람들은 그들이 누구이예요. (People are who they are.) 사람들은 자신이 하는 일을 해요. (People do what they do.) 당신이 문제를 일으키는 경우, 당신은 자신의 수준에 자신을 넣어요. (If you cause trouble, you put yourself on their level.) 그리스도인들은 그리스도와 같이 되려고 노력해야 해요. (Christians are supposed to be trying to be like Christ.) 그리스도께서 그들을 십자가에 못 박게 하시소서요. (Christ let them nail him to the cross.) 그는 결백했음에도 반응하지 않았고 화를 내지 않았어요. (He didn’t react and get angry even though he was innocent.) 그리고, 우리는 그것을 위해 그를 사랑해요! (And we love him for it!)

Wake Up, Oh Sleeper

잠을 일어나주세요

Photo by Franck Denis on Pexels.com

My God has said his light will shine;

내 하나님이 그의 빛을 광택 할거예라고 말했오요;

Photo by Oleg_bf Oleg Borisov on Pexels.com

His lights will shine in hearts of man.

그의 빛들은 우리 마음에 광택 할 거예요.

Photo by Vital1na on Pexels.com

The fruitless deeds of darkness past;

어둠의 열매없는 행동들이 지나갔어요;

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Revealed with Christ with glorious hand.

그리스도는 영광스러운 손길을 통해 계시되요.

Chorus: (후렴)

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

Wake up, oh sleeper, rise from the dead,

잠을 일어나주세요. 죽은 자로부터 일어나주세요.

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

And Christ will shine on you.

그리고 그리수도는 당신에게 광택 할거예요.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Wake up, oh sleeper, rise from the dead,

잠을 일어나주세요. 죽은 자로부터 일어나주세요.

Photo by Juhasz Imre on Pexels.com

And Christ will shine on you.

그리고 그리수도는 당신에게 광택 할거예요.

Verse 2:

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The fruits of light his spirit gives

그분의 영은 빛의 열매를 맺어요.

Photo by Matheus Viana on Pexels.com

Are goodness, truth, and righteousness.

그분의 영은 선과 진리와 의로운 이예요.

Photo by icon0.com on Pexels.com

A new day breaks and all is clear;

새로운 하루 휴식, 모든 것이 분명하요;

Photo by Flickr on Pexels.com

Give thanks to God in Christ Jesus.

예수 그리스도 안에 하나님께 감사를 드립니다.

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Unto Thee Oh Lord (La Tine, Oh Domnul)

Buna Ziua. (Hello.) Ce mai faci? (How are you?) Sper ca zi ta e bine. (I hope your day is fine.) În ultima vreme, privesc un program pe televizorul pe care e foarte popular în America. (Lately, I have been watching a program on television that is very popular in America.) Se cheamă “Cel Loc Bun.” (It is called “The Good Place.”) E despre viața după moarte. (It is about life after death.) Idea din programul spune ca daca suntem destul de bun în viață aceasta, putem sa mergem in Rai. (The idea from the program says that if we are good enough in this life, we can go to Heaven.) Programul și spune ca facem lucrurile fiecare zi pe care nu știam rezultate de acest hotărâre. (The program also says that we do things everyday that we don’t know the results of this decision.) Pentru un exemplu, daca cumpăram niște legume la magazinul dar nu știu ca muncitor pe care au crescut legumele ascetele era tratat rău de șeful lor, nu contează, și noi am tratat pe muncitori rău. (For an example, if we buy some vegetable at the store but don’t know that the workers that grew the vegetables were treated bad by their boss, it doesn’t matter, we also have treated the workers bad.)

We can’t know where every vegetable came from, who grew it, and what exactly those people were doing right or wrong. Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

Sunt atât de fericit ca Dumnezeu nu gândește așa de loc! (I am so happy that God doesn’t think that way at all!) Dumnezeu ne spune sa încercăm sa fim bun, dar întru adevărul, nu putem sa facem nimic singură sa mergem in Rai. (God says we need to try to be good, but truly, we can’t do anything to go to Heaven.) Dumnezeu ne iubește, și el a trimis fiul lui sa moară pentru noi ce e imposibil pentru noi sa fim destul de bun sa mergem în Rai fără ajutorul Isus lui. (God loves us, and he sent his son to die for us because it is impossible for us to be good enough to go to Heaven without Jesus.) Dumnezeu vrea noi sa îl iubim sa încercăm. (God wants us to love him and to try.) Daca putem sa mergem in Rai fără Isus, Isus nu ari venit. (If we could go to Heaven without Jesus, Jesus would not have come.) Bible spune ca neprihănirea noastră e ca murdar cârpele în față de Dumnezeu. (The Bible says that our righteousness is like dirty rags in front of God. ) Sângele lui Isus spală păcatele noștri. (The blood of Jesus ashes our sins.)

If I had thought and put that towel down right, it wouldn’t have ended up in the floor, but thank God, he is not going to hold me accountable for it. I never spanked my kids for accidently spilling their milk, and God won’t either. Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

Când am fost la bucătărie câteva clipele înainte, am pus un prosop pe dulapul. (When I was in the kitchen a few minutes ago, I put a towel on the cabinet.) M-am grăbit un pic ca am avut alt lucru sa fac. (I hurried a little because I had other things to do.) Prosopul a căzut pe podea. (The towel fell in the floor.) M-am gândit: “asta e viață.” (I thought, “That’s life.”) Încerc sa fac ceva bun, dar nu sunt perfect de loc, și nu reușesc făcând tot chair bine. )I try to do something good, but I am not perfect at all, and I don’t accomplish doing everything just fine.) Și atunci, m-am gândit, “Dumnezeu, mulțumesc pentru harul tau.” (And, then I thought, “God, thank you for your grace.”) încerc, dar nu sunt perfect. (I try, but I am not perfect.) Nu trebuie sa avem grijă despre daca noi am cumpărat legume greșit sau nu. (We don’t have to worry about whether we bought the wrong vegetables or not.) Dumnezeu știe daca nu vrem sa tratăm pe nimeni rău. (God knows we don’t want to treat anyone bad.)Avem o mare nevoie de Dumnezeu! (We really need God!)

Unto Thee Oh God

La Tine, Oh Domnul

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Unto thee, Oh Lord, do I lift up my soul.

La tine, Oh Domnul, ridic pe sufletul meu.

Photo by Caleb Oquendo on Pexels.com

Unto thee, Oh Lord, do I lift up my soul.

La tine, Oh Domnul, ridic pe sufletul meu.

Photo by Juhasz Imre on Pexels.com

Oh my God, I trust in thee,

Oh, Dumnezeu meu, te cred,

Photo by Demeter Attila on Pexels.com

Let me not be ashamed,

Nu mă lăsați sa fiu rușine,

Photo by Daisa TJ on Pexels.com

Let not mine enemies triumph over me.

Nu lăsați pe dușmani meu sa mă cuceresc.

Photo by Xiaoyu Chen on Pexels.com

Yea, let none that wait on thee be ashamed.

Și, nu lăsați pe cel pe care aștept pe tine sa fie rușine.

Photo by Luis Quintero on Pexels.com

Yea, let none that wait on thee be ashamed.

Și, nu lăsați pe cel pe care aștept pe tine sa fie rușine.

Photo by Franck Denis on Pexels.com

Oh, my God, I trust in thee,

Oh, Dumnezeu meu, te cred,

Photo by Mihar Thakur on Pexels.com

Let me not be ashamed,

Nu mă lăsați sa fiu rușine,

Photo by Maria Pop on Pexels.com

Let not mine enemies triumph over me.

Nu lăsați pe dușmani meu sa mă cuceresc.

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Remember not the sins of my youth,

Nu țin în minte păcatele mele din tinerețe meu.

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

Remember not the sins of my youth.

Nu țin în minte păcatele mele din tinerețe meu.

Photo by Emre Can on Pexels.com

Oh, my God, I trust in thee,

Oh, Dumnezeu meu, te cred,

Photo by omar alnahi on Pexels.com

Let me not be ashamed,

Nu mă lăsați sa fiu rușine,

Photo by Maria Pop on Pexels.com

Let not mine enemies triumph over me.

Nu lăsați pe dușmani meu sa mă cuceresc.

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There’s a Garden (Hay un Jardin)

Buenos Dias. (Hello.) Como estas? (How are you?) Espero que estas bien. (I hope you are fine.) Pensamosnos acerca de Dios hoy. (Let’s think about God today.) El mundo está tan lleno de tantas cosas terribles. (The world is so full of so many terrible things.) A las noticias les encanta señalarnos a todos. (The news loves to point them all out to us.) Sin embargo, lo bueno supera a lo malo. (However, the world outweighs the bad.) Dios realmente existe. (God actually exists.) Dios es el padre de la bondad. (God is the father of goodness.) Dios es el padre de amor. (God is the father of love.) Dios es el padre de paz. (God is the father of peace.) Dios es el padre de la belleza. (God is the father of beauty.) Dios es el padre de Felicidad. (God is the father of happiness.) Dios es el padre de todos que es bueno. (God is the father of everything that is good.) Piensamosnos acerca de todos que es bueno. (Let’s think about everything that is good.) La vida es mucho mejor si pensamos acerca de la bondad. (Life is much better if we think about the goodness.)

There’s a Garden

Hay un Jardin

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

There is a garden where Jesus is waiting,

Hay o jardin donde Jesus esta esperando,

Photo by Jill Wellington on Pexels.com

There is a place that is wondrously fair;

Hay un lugar que es maravillosamente hermoso;

Photo by Juhasz Imre on Pexels.com

For it glows with the light of his presence,

Porque brilla con la luz de su presencia,

Photo by Flickr on Pexels.com

‘Tis the beautiful garden of prayer.

Es el hermoso jardín de oración.

Chorus:

Photo by James Wheeler on Pexels.com

Oh, the beautiful garden, the garden of prayer,

Oh, el hermoso jardin, el jardin de oracion.

Photo by fotografierende on Pexels.com

Oh the beautiful garden of prayer,

Oh el hermosa jardin de oracion.

Photo by Tobias Bjørkli on Pexels.com

There my savior awaits, and he opens the gates

Mi Salvador espera alla, y abre las puertas

Photo by Matheus Bertelli on Pexels.com

To the beautiful garden of prayer.

Para el hermosa jardin de oracion.

Verse 2:

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There’s a garden where Jesus is waiting,

Hay un jardin donde Jesus esta esperando,

Photo by Dazzle Jam on Pexels.com

And I go with my burden and care.

Y voy con mi carga y cuidado.

Photo by Franck Denis on Pexels.com

Just to learn from his lips words of comfort,

Solamente aprender de sus labios palabras de consuelo,

Photo by icon0.com on Pexels.com

In the beautiful garden of prayer.

En el hermoso jarin de oracion.

Verse 3:

Photo by Diego Madrigal on Pexels.com

There’s a garden where Jesus is waiting,

Hay un jardin donde Jesus esta esperando.

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Oh can aught with his glory compare?

Oh ¿Puede algo más compararse con su gloria?

Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

Just to walk and to talk with my Savior,

Solamente a caminar y a hablar con mi Salvador,

Photo by Mike on Pexels.com

In the beautiful garden of prayer.

En el hermosa jardin de oracion.

Verse 4:

Photo by icon0.com on Pexels.com

There’s a garden where Jesus is waiting,

Hay un jardin donde Jesus esta esperando,

Photo by Emre Can on Pexels.com

And he bids you come meet with him there,

Y Te pide que vengas a reunirte con él allí.

Photo by Caleb Oquendo on Pexels.com

Just to bow and receive a new blessing,

Solamente para inclinarse y recibir una nueva bendición,

Photo by Artem Saranin on Pexels.com

In the beautiful garden of prayer.

En el hermoso jardin de oracion.

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The Girl Who Turned My Phone Off

After we came back from Romania, we were living in the country in Ohio on the old Everson farm. It was a place of green rolling hills outside of Belpre, Ohio. I had been teaching at the university, and my husband had tried to get a job as a chaplain in the prison system, but was unable to, so went to work as a prison guard. He met a prison chaplain who along with his wife had adopted a Romanian girl from a Romanian orphanage. She had long black hair, big black eyes, and beautiful mocha skin. She may have been of gypsy descent, but no one actually knew.

She had been in a Romanian orphanage all her life until they adopted her. Photo by Sandevil Sandhya on Pexels.com

The girl had not been treated well in the orphanage. She had basically been starved, so her growth was stunted. She was 16 years old, but not any bigger than a 12 year old. She had been unable to run and play with the other children in the orphanage. She had a hurt leg that had needed to be operated on, but they just ignored it, so she had become a cripple. She had been neglected and not even taught to read in Romanian. She had been a burden in the orphanage because of her leg.

She had to study to learn to speak to her parents. Photo by Pragyan Bezbaruah on Pexels.com

This American couple went to Romania looking for a child to adopt. They really liked this little girl and decided to adopt her. She couldn’t speak English, and they couldn’t speak Romanian. They brought her to the States, sent her to school, and began trying to teach her English. Neither of them studied Romanian, but expected her to cross the language barrier. They took her to the doctor and had her leg operated on, so she could begin walking. She was miserable because of the operation, the rehabilitation from the operation, and the English. However, she learned to speak English and learned to walk long distances at her adopted mother’s prompting. However, she never felt comfortable speaking English. She had to learn to read in English, but she couldn’t even read in Romanian. Her English reading level was very low and Romanian reading was non existent.

Her bother had been feeding her strange food that she didn’t like. by Valeria Boltneva on Pexels.com

There was another obstacle, her new adoptive parent’s religion. After being starved all her early years, her new parents were very strict with her diet and fed her all kinds of strange food. They were Seventh Day Adventists. They had special Seventh Day Adventists recipes they used telling her she must eat that food because it was what God wanted. The girl longed to try ice cream, cookies, fried chicken, hamburgers, pizza, all kinds of food she saw around her in America, but her mother always told her, “no.” When they brought her to me, I didn’t know about the food problem.

I began teaching her twice a week. Photo by August de Richelieu on Pexels.com

My husband had told this chaplain that we had been in Romania, and the adoptive parents wanted me to help the girl since I was a teacher and fluent in Romanian. They began setting up bi-weekly appointments for them to bring the girl and let me teach her. I was supposed to help her English reading and writing as well as start her reading and writing in Romanian. They brought the girl and I worked with her while the chaplain and his wife visited with my husband. The girl and I spoke in Romanian together, and the girl loved having someone to speak Romanian with her. She was learning and coming right along. She was actually very bright. She always told her parents how much she enjoyed it when I taught her.

We were all becoming friends. Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

The girl got it in her head that she had wished that I had adopted her instead of her parents. She talked her mother and I into letting her spend a few days at my house. The plan was for her mother to drop her off, let her stay a couple of days, and then at the regular appointment time, her mother would come back and get her. Her parents and I both consented to let her spend a couple of days with me. We were becoming good friends.

Her mother brought strange, interesting dishes that I didn’t recognize. Photo by ready made on Pexels.com

When her mother brought her, she brought more than clothes. Her mother had made up all kinds of Seventh Day Adventist dishes for the girl to eat while she was at our house. The food looked strange .and interesting. I had no idea what it was. After the mother left, the daughter went about doing what she actually wanted to do.

She slyly turned my phone over and turned it off because she wanted to lose her mother. Photo by chepté cormani on Pexels.com

She turned my phone off secretly so her mother couldn’t call her. No one at my house knew the phone was off. It was a land line, and there was a place on the bottom of the phone where you could turn it off. We didn’t even know it was there and had never considered something like that.

She really wanted that ice cream that was in our freezer. She had never eaten ice cream in her life! Photo by Sebastian Coman Photography on Pexels.com

She suggested a cultural exchange with me. She wanted to try the ice cream in our fridge so badly! I didn’t realize her mother had brought that food because her mother didn’t want her eating things like ice cream and other normal American foods. She had been curious about eating them since she came to the States, but she told me she hadn’t been allowed to eat them. She asked me if I had ever eaten the Seventh Day Adventist foods, and I hadn’t. They looked interesting, and I didn’t know anything about them. She offered them to me and asked me to eat some, so I ate some. She wanted some ice cream, so I let her try the ice cream. She was eating regular meals with us. I made a nice dinner every evening. I made oatmeal every morning for breakfast, and at lunch, we often ate sandwiches or left overs. I also did a lot of baking for my kids, so there were cookies on hand, and she tried the cookies. She was really enjoying herself and melding right into the family with my kids. It was a mistake for me to try that strange Seventh Day Adventist food because it gave me diarrhea. I didn’t know what it was, and decided I better stay away from it. She kept encouraging me to eat it and even offered it to my kids, but she wasn’t eating any of it. She was trying to get rid of it. Later, I realized that one of her big problems with her parents was that crazy Seventh Day Adventist food. Everything was going smooth.

When her mother showed up, her mother was angry! Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

A couple of days later, when it was time for her mother to come, her mother showed up. Her mother was upset because she had been unable to get through to us by phone. She accused me of turning my phone off. I didn’t even know how to turn the phone off. The lady picked my phone up and showed me the bottom, and my phone was turned off. She deduced that if I hadn’t done it, her daughter had done it.

I already had four kids, and I wasn’t looking to take someone else’s child. Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

She confronted her Romanian daughter. Her daughter began telling everyone she felt abused by being forced to eat the Seventh Day Adventist food. She felt abused by her mother pushing her to take long walks when her leg hurt. She was very unhappy! She didn’t like all the English, and she liked me because I could speak to her in Romanian. She pointed out that she even looked more like me than her mother. She had decided that the wrong family had adopted her and wanted to be my daughter. She asked me to adopt her instead of her parents. Legally, they had all the rights, not me. I already had four children, and I liked the girl, but I wasn’t looking to take her from her parents. It was hard to send her back to eat that terrible food. I wished her mother would give her normal food, but legally, there was nothing I could do. She was not my daughter. They had gone to Romania and rescued her. She was better off with them than in an orphanage in Romania, but I wished she had gotten better parents. I tried to convince her that she was better off with her parents than in Romania and apologized for not being able to help her. Needless to say, her mother never brought her back for any more lessons.