Tuesday, 14 August 2012

(Day 25) Hwaseong Immigration Detention Center-day 12

I was able to stock up on coffee and snacks today. Still no progress on anything else yet.

I finally finished A Tale of Two Cities. Not as engaging as Oliver Twist. I'm not sure if this is true of all fiction novels, but the relationships between characters in Dickens' books seems too contrived. Over the span of decades, the actions of one character affect another character, that they just happen to meet by coincidence. Its natural that the actions one person affect another, but to have them just randomly meet one day on the street, years later, and have the relationship sewn up in a nice neat incestuous little package? It's an impossibility that only happens in books and Hollywood and although I enjoy the plot, I have a hard time suspending my belief as a result. In addition, Dickens' dialogue is way too wordy and convoluted. I understand it was a different era and language has changed a lot over 200 years, but still-- get to the point! It often takes two pages of dialogue before the reader finds out what the character's trying to say. Maybe, I'm just a product of my jet-set age, but my patience wears thin at times, when reading Dickens' prose. I suppose part of the fun is finding out how all the characters are related in Dickens' stories.

I got a haircut for the first time since May 2011. I almost look respectable again. If/when I go to court, I'll look halfway decent, at least. My hair is still pretty long, it just looks neater.

One of the things that is different about the detention center and jail, besides solitary confinement, is there are different activities each day of the week. On Monday and Wednesday, there is church service and on  Tuesday and Thursday, there is an exercise period. In both cases, nobody does what they're supposed to do-- they mostly go to gossip with the inmates from other cells. Some are actual Christians, but most are non-religious like the Chinese or else they are Muslims. The service is entirely in Korean so it's kind of pointless to English-only speakers, such as myself. It reminds me of when I was younger and went to a summer camp because they had awesome activities, like horseback riding and water skiing. The reason I'm reminded of this camp, it's because it was run by 7th day Adventists. They are an ultra-hardcore sect of Christians whom recognize the Sabbath on Saturday, eat only vegetarian food and have Mass every morning. Since I'm not religious, I would sleep through morning Mass. My mom would send me salami in my bi-weekly care packages and I would resell it on the camp's black market to other kids who weren't so religious or vegetarian. The camp had some pretty awesome programs, so lots of kids, from all over, went to this camp for the whole summer-- just for the activities and we would tolerate the Christian brainwashing.

One of the Chinese left this morning and was replaced by a Filipino and another Chinese this afternoon.
The Nigerian tells me that he had to fill out a questionnaire once, that asked about a gym and restaurant. He filled out "no gym" and "no restaurant" and the guards got upset because the survey was from the UN and this place is supposedly funded by them as a refugee center, too. Some shady stuff going on here between the Korean government and the UN.