World Cup day

Today is World Cup day. Well, it’s South Korea’s 2nd game in the World Cup and people seem to be very excited. Many people are wearing red shirts in support of the Korean team. People at school were all talking about where they were going to watch the game. Most people, including myself, planned on going to the City Hall area where there was a large outdoor area with many big screen monitors.

I met a friend at work after it ended and she was already wearing a red shirt. We first went to Myeong Dong shopping area so she could return some clothes. I found a red Korea shirt to wear too and after she returned her clothes, we went to Subway to eat sandwiches. Next door to the restaurant and outside, were a lot of occupied chairs and tables. There was also a large TV monitor with the pre-game show being viewed by all the people sitting there as they ate food. Inside Subway, there were just two other people eating while I went to place my order. The lady who took my order kept smiling when I said the various ingredients I wanted on the sandwich. We got the food fine and ate and talked. Then we headed towards the large area near City Hall where everyone was gathering to watch the game.

By the time we finished eating, the game had already started and the people next door were very excited and rooting a lot for the Korean team. Some streets were blocked off by the police, so it was kind of fun walking in the middle of normally busy streets on our way to the gathering place. It actually felt like a large large outdoor fair. People were wandering around all dressed in red. Others selling noise makers and various clothing and accessories. When we finally got to the gathering place, it was sooo crowded that all we could see was a large sea of mostly seated people. The center area with the best view was all closed off with fences since they got to the seats early in the day. The rest of us had to stay outside of the area. It was kind of hard to see the screens with so many people, so we ended up just wandering around some to see if we could get better views. We walked underneath everyone through the subway station and then found ourselves in the street with another large group of people. We had a bit more room to move around here at least. When Korea scored a point, the crowd went wild. People screaming happily and some lighting off fireworks into the sky. Others ran around cheering a lot. I’ve never been into sports much at all, so I can’t fully understand why people react like this to sports… but it was interesting watching it all. When the other teamed scored, the crowd would complain in a low quiet sound. We were standing in one area watching the game, and I noticed two foreigners standing close by. For some reason, 4 Korean girls went up and asked to get their picture with them. And then as soon as they were done, another group of people asked for their picture with them too. I always find it amusing how some foreigners are almost treated as celebrities.

We ended up leaving early to avoid the crowds of people that would fill up the subways. Korea ended up losing and they will have one more game next Wednesday. If they can win, then they will move up into the next bracket.