Monday, November 11, 2013

Yeonsoo seo /interview essay/ tues 1pm

My father was a teacher in middle, and now he is a principal. I know my dad's childhood was not easy and smooth, but I wanted to know more about his childhood and how he overcame his difficulties. So I interviewed my dad for about an hour. Here is his story.

He was born in a small suburb in Sun-cheon. He is eighth of nine children in his family. He has six sisters and two brothers and his parents sustained a living by growing rice and very sometimes selling pigs or cows. He seemed to have quite hard lives.

"When I was a kid, I used to walk walking and running to school for one or two hours every day. I packed books in a cloth, not bag. There was no bus because many roads were unpaved. When buses started to run, I couldn't use it because I couldn't afford it."

His voice became very calm, and he closed his eyes gently for a moment recalling his childhood. Back in the day, flush toilet did not exist in Korea. When my dad was young, toilet was outside of the house, a little bit far away from his room. So he had to bring flashlight at night, and umbrella when it rained. I was so shocked at his childhood because he was living a life that my generation can't think of and even can't stand at all. However, despite his hard circumstances, he enjoyed reading books and studying since he met one teacher when he was ten years old. The teacher made him to be interested in learning new things. After that, my dad really enjoyed studying unlike most students these days studying so hard just to get good grade.

"I was just so happy to learn new things through books. I often had to help my parent's farming after school. One day, when I was reading a book while feeding a cow, I was so focused on a book that I fell over a stone and slipped on cowpat." He chuckled at this memory for a minute.

Since he was in ROTC at his university, he entered military as a platoon leader. As he worked at demilitarized zone where there were mines everywhere, he should have controlled soldiers he was in charge of. His face looked gloomy when he talked about military because some soldiers died of stepping on mine accidently. He commanded and guided subordinated soldiers very well during his military life that no one got hurt or died. This military experience made him enough qualities to become a leader. Enjoying studying and experiencing leading soldiers in military led him to be a teacher ultimately. He started to teach ethics in middle school after college and military service.

"Why did you decide to teach ethics?"

"I wanted to talk about life itself with students. Human duty and smooth relationships with others are very important in life. I wanted to tell them how to live from my own experience overcoming all those hard times." He sounded very confident and lively at this time, with smiling face."

He really enjoyed every single hour talking about how human beings should behave or how to live in their lives with students.

"I really liked my job because it is rewarding to guide students who have infinite potentials."

I especially respect his positive attitude and challenge spirit towards dreams.

He wanted to become a principal someday when he started his career, so he prepared little by little what he had to do to be qualified to become a principal. He accomplished his goal by making efforts with positive mind. Lastly my dad told me, "I was not afraid of failure because I did my best every moment in my life. People often say something is hard without even trying. You will never regret if you exert your utmost."

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