Hannah and Je together

Thursday, 11 June 2015

Chaplaincy became a fetter

From this Monday, I am doing a CPE, Clinical Pastoral Education, which is hospital chaplaincy intern and education.  The orientation is scheduled for two weeks, and I have been only here for four days.  I don’t really know anything about hospital chaplaincy.

이번주 월요일부터 CPE라는 걸 하는데, 병원 원목 인턴 교육 과정이다.  오리엔테이션만 2주로 잡혀 있는데, 이제 겨우 나흘 했기 때문에 사실상 병원 원목에 대해 아무 것도 모른다고 할 수 있다.

Next to the hospital parking lot, there is Target and I went there after today’s education to get Shopkick point.  While I was trying to get the point on my cellphone, a lady next to me asked help of me for her iPhone.  She looked sick, and kept saying that she could not think right because of her excessive medication. That sounded like she was a patient of my hospital, and she also saw my badge and figured out that I am an chaplain there.

병원 주차장 옆에는 타겟이라는 대형 마트가 있는데, 샵킥의 점수를 받기 위해 오늘 교육이 끝난 후에 잠시 들렸다.  핸드폰 들고 점수를 받으려고 하는데, 옆에 어떤 아줌마가 아이폰 갖고 좀 도와달라고 했다.  아줌마가 좀 아파 보였고, 게다가 약이 과해서 정신이 핑 돌아서 제대로 생각할 수가 없다고 하는 걸 보면 아마 우리 병원 환자인 듯 하다.  그리고 그 아줌마가 내 배지를 보고 내가 병원 원목이라는 걸 알아 버렸다.

She was trying to backup her cellphone to iCloud and she couldn’t.  The error message was saying it needs Wi-Fi for iCloud backup, so I helped her connect to Target Wi-Fi, and the backup worked.  She began a conversation for a few minutes until she figured out that I used to live in Canada.  Then she asked me which country I prefer.  I was being polite and said, “There are many things that America is better than Canada, and there are a few things that Canada is better than America.”

아줌마가 하려던 건 핸드폰을 아이클라우드에 백업하는 것이었는데, 와이파이가 연결되어야 한다는 메세지가 나왔기에 매장 와이파이에 연결을 해 줬더니 제대로 작동했다.  아줌마랑 몇 분 얘기를 하게 되었는데, 내가 캐나다에서 살았었다는 걸 말했다.  그랬더니 미국하고 캐나다 중에 어디가 더 좋냐고 묻길래 공손하기 위해서 본심을 숨기고 “미국은 캐나다보다 좋은 점이 훨씬 많아요.  그리고 캐나다고 미국보다 좋은 점이 몇기 있긴 하죠” 라고 말을 했다.

She was a bit curious about what can possibly Canada be better than America, and asked me.  I said what I always say – “Well, hospitals are free.”  And she said, “yes, but they die while waiting.”  I replied, “Well, according to my experiences in both countries, the waiting times are not that different.  But the service quality may be different.”

그랬더니 아줌마는 흥미롭다는 듯이 호기심을 보이면서 어떻게 캐나다가 미국보다 좋은 점이 있을 수가 있다는 것인지 내게 물어봤다.  그래서 내가 늘 하던 얘기를 했다. “뭐 일단 병원이 공짜죠.”  그랬더니 아줌마가 하는 얘기가, “공짜긴 한데 기다리다가 다들 죽어버린다면서”라고 하길래, 내가 “글쎄요, 두 나라에 모두 살아본 제 경험으로는 기다리는 시간 자체는 비슷한 거 같아요.  다만 미국이 의료의 질이 훨씬 좋겠죠”라고 대답을 해줬다.

Because she asked me, I said the second thing as well, “the guns are illegal in Canada.”  Then she looked extremely shocked and almost shouted, “What? Are you saying that is better?  YOU DON’T BELIEVE IN THE RIGHT TO CARRY GUNS?

아줌마가 또 뭐가 좋은지 묻길래 캐나다에서는 총이 불법이라고 말을 하자, 굉장히 충격을 받은 듯한 표정을 짓더니 거의 소리를 지르듯이 말을 했다. “뭐? 지금 그게 좋다고 말을 하는 거야? 넌 도대체 총기를 소유할 권리를 믿지도 않는다는 거냐?

Since then, I did not say anything for over twenty minutes, but she was quite angry and spitting (religious) political opinions.

그 이후로 난 20분이 넘게 단 한 마디도 하지 않았고 그 아줌마는 꽤 흥분하고 화가 나서 (종교같은) 정치적 견해를 마구 쏟아냈다.

“This country, the United States of America is built upon the republican values NOT democratic values!  Republicans want big individuals and small government.  Democratics want big government and small individuals!  Democrats want to control the people.  Democrats hate blacks and Asians!  Democrats try to control them using food stamps and MediCaid….”

“이 나!라!는, 미!합!중!국!은 공화당의 가치 위에 세워졌지 민주당의 가치위에 세워진게 아니란 말이얏!  공화당은 힘쎈 개개인과 작은 정부를 원하고, 민주당은 큰 정부와 작은 개인을 원한다곳!  민자당 놈들은 사람들을 통제하려고 햇!  민주당은 껌둥이랑 동양인을 증오한다곳!  민주당이 사람들을 통제하는 방식은 바로 푸드스탬프와 무상의료얏!….”

I was actually able to contradict every single word of hers, but I couldn’t.  First, because she already identified me as the chaplain in the hospital and I did not want to make any trouble.  Second, because she was quite angry.  To be polite, I was just nodding, and saying such as ah, oh, hmm…  I couldn’t even just walk away.  After listening to her preaching for over twenty minutes, finally I pretended that I got a phone text message, and apologised that my time was running out even though your words are very interesting.

그 아줌마 말을 하나 하나 조목 조목 반박할 수도 있었지만, 할 수가 없었다.  일단은 아줌마가 나를 병원 원목으로 알고 있다는 것이었고, 나는 병원 시작하자 마자 뭔가 문제를 만들고 싶지 않았기 때문이다.  또 하나는 아줌마가 상당히 흥분해 있었기 떄문이다.  공손해 보이기 위해서 그냥 계속해서 고개를 끄덕이고, 아~ 오~ 흠.. 등과 같은 추임새만 넣었다.  그냥 나와버릴 수가 없었다.  그 아줌마 설교를 20분이 넘게 듣고 나서 핸드폰에 문자 온 것 처럼 속이고는 “아이쿠, 제가 좀 다른 데 늦었네요, 아줌마 말씀이 참 재밌는데 말이죠”라고 사과하고 나왔다.

I need to ask the staff chaplains what to do in those situations.

병원의 경험 많은 진짜 원목들에게 어떻게 해야 하는지 물어봐야겠다.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Second Holy Land Trip – Fifty Seventh Day – Last Day

There was no class on the last day.  The school always told us that the last class is Thursday, but the day before, the secretary of the language centre told us that there would be no class on the last day.  But we just had small ceremony.

I left the house around 10:30 in the morning because the ceremony was at 11.  I asked the family to call a cab, and I paid 20 shekels from home to school.  Do you remember the cab driver on my first day in Bethlehem who yelled at us and dropped us in the middle of the way to the Siraj centre because we refused to give him 25 shekels?  Home-Bethlehem University is 3/4 longer than Siraj-Bethlehem University, and today’s driver charged me 20 shekels.

Classmates.  Lina from Germany, me, Cletos from Ghana, Mateo from Italy.  Anna from Switcherland is not here

Classmates. Lina from Germany, me, Cletos from Ghana, Mateo from Italy. Anna from Switzerland is not here

The ceremony was simple, and I’ve got a certificate.  Anna from Switzerland could not attend the ceremony because her airline emailed her that her flight is changed one day earlier, which is Thursday.  So she went to the airport.  And the Spoken Arabic Level 1 teacher did not show up too.  Anna is from Switzerland, but working in Germany.  She is very nice girl, but also very strong in her opinion and people must agree with her.  Once we were talking about the war, and she was demonising Israel with the number of death in Gaza.  I do not deny that many people were killed in Gaza by the Israeli attack.  I told her that Hamas also tried to attack, they just did not succeed.  Then she mentioned the number of deaths on both sides and said “how can it be the same!”  I also told her it is because Israel has defensive technology and successfully defended its citizens, not because Hamas was better in spirit and mind and refused to attack the other.  Then she became so mad.  I do not understand why so many people especially from Europe think Palestinians are good, but Israelis are pure evil?

A few days before the talk, our classmates, including Anna and I, were talking about airlines.  I said that I am flying with SWISS (Anna was happy), but I think Lufthansa is slightly better than SWISS.  At this point, she became so offended with that.  And yesterday, we were talking again in the class about the airlines.  I told her that SWISS is one of the top airlines.  Then she said with still little bit angry voice, “SWISS air is NOT one of the top airlines.  It is the ONLY TOP airline!  I am not saying this because I am from Switzerland.  It is just the FACT!”  I wanted to ask her to prove it with the numbers and evidences, but I just said, “OK” to avoid her anger.

Gemma from Spain

Gemma from Spain

After the ceremony, some of the students had lunch together.  And there were three people going to the airport including me.  Edward Fox, middle-aged guy from England wanted to join me but was not sure.  And Zoey from rural Illinois wanted to go to the airport with me and she asked me to wait for her in the bus stop for an hour.  Actually she came to the bus stop in two hours.  She is very spoiled daughter, and her father does everything for her even for now when she is in college, and consequently she does not know to do anything.

While I was standing next to the bus stop, the taxi drivers came to me to ask the taxi ride.  I told them that I am waiting for my friend, then they found that I speak Arabic, and became very curious about me.  So I was surrounded by them and talked two hours.  I found that Christians and Muslims have different greetings in Arabic.  Some of the people I talked have multiple wives (the maximum number is four).  Later, they began to shout “Fucking America” surrounding me as if they protest in front of the Embassy.  It was half joke and half serious.  They said no Palestinians like America and they hate it more than Israel.  Later, one of them advised me not to say I am from America but just say that I am a Korean because identifying oneself as an American is not wise in Palestine.

After waiting two hours, Zoey came to the bus stop, and I also found Edward too.  So we three journeyed to the airport together.  The bus was full of Students of Bethlehem University, Palestinians living in Jerusalem.  At the checkpoint, everybody got off the bus, and walked through the soldiers showing the permits and passports.  It was my first time getting off the bus for the checking.  Every time, the soldiers got on the bus.  And because of this, I lost my seat.

Edward’s flight was 9pm, Zoey’s 11pm, and mine was 5am next morning.  From Jerusalem, there are two ways to go to the airport.  Getting a sherut (or shared taxi), and using the public transportation.  The best and fastest way is to use the sherut.  I explained them about both ways, and I recommended the sherut.  But somehow, Edward insisted on the public transportation.  It was about 5pm, and I was kind of worried about his flight, but he insisted.  From the Damascus gate, we used light railway to the Jerusalem Central Bus Station.  ANd we waited an hour and got on the bus to the Haifa, and got off at the airport city.  There we were supposed to get on the free shuttle, or any public bus to the airport terminals, but we did not see anything.  And finally we got on a cab all together.  It was about 8pm when we got to the airport terminal.  He ran as fast as he can.  Zoey went through the security check right away  because the security check begins three hours prior to the flight.  Later I met Edward again.  He told me that he missed the flight.  We spent three hours on the public transportation system when we could have just spent 45 minutes on sherut.

Ilaria from Italy

Ilaria from Italy

Here comes small stories from the trip.

My hosting family in Bethlehem has a Hyundai Tucson.  I do not know how they got this, but it must be from Korea.  The owner’s manual is in Korea.  The car speaks Korean (voice activated features and instructions).  The navigation systems also shows and speaks Korean.  And they cannot use any of the advanced features of the car including Bluetooth, multimedia features and navigation.  They just drive.  And they said that they suffer from Korean language.

The family has a daughter, and two sons.  And I stayed in the daughter’s room, and every night she slept on the couch in the living room (she graduated college).  I did not feel happy and comfortable about that.  Except, the hosting family was very good.  They are super nice people.

In Palestine (and probably all the Arab world), mother does everything.  Father cannot do anything about house chores, and children are the same.  once I wanted to do my laundry and asked the daughter where the washing machine is, and she asked me back if they have one.  Five minutes later I found it in front of her room.  The family do not even gather the laundry for their mother.  She goes everywhere to collect the laundry.  When I told another lady that men do half (or more) of the house chores in Canada and America, she was shocked.  And she said complaining about the house chore is not possible and if one does, then she is considered as an evil mother and evil woman.

In Palestine, people live in peace between them, not like in other areas of middle east where they kill each other.  Even Christians and Muslims have no problem living together in Bethlehem.  But in my perception, it is just because they face bigger problem of Israel.

As I wrote above, Palestinians hate America.  Then how about Israelis?  I was told many times from the Israelis that “Do you know we hate Obama?  All Israelis hate Obama”  when I told them that I am from Chicago.  America is fool, spends a lot of money and effort on both sides and being hated from both.

On the trip to Hebron together, the so-called tour guide was talking about Hamas. I was not actually listening because he has no logic in his speech. But Lina, the girl from Germany, told him that it is not 100% that she agrees. Then the guy began to yell at her. She was freaked out, and she stopped talking with him. I think that attitude will never work to make friends. And they need friends.

Yesterday when I was sitting on a bench in the school yard, an old gentleman (he is a professor at Bethlehem University) came to me and asked if I am a Korean.  I said that I am a Korea but I am from Chicago.  He told me that they have two exchange students from Korea every year, and he thought I am one of them.  We talked a bit more.  Suddenly he asked me if I fell in love with a Palestinian girl.  I said no.  He, then, pointing two girls sitting beside me, asked me again “Don’t you think the Palestinians girls are beautiful?”  I told him that I am married.  Well, this is third time that people tried to connect me with someone.

Sunday, 24 August 2014

Second Holy Land Trip – Fifty Third Day – Baraka Presbyterian Church in Bethlehem

The first day I came here, I found the sign of Presbyterian Church in front of the house where I am staying.  But my hosting family told me that they have not seen them worship on Sundays.

Church Entrance

Church Entrance

My hosting family told me that they heard of bigger Presbyterian church in Bethlehem, not do not know the exact location.  As a favour to me, the father of the family called his neighbour this morning who is in the Beit Sahour Presbyterian Church (the official name is Shepherds’ Field Presbyterian Church), and asked the location.  It was on the Hebron street, and he gave me ride there.

Church Building

Church Building

The church was on the down-side of the road (everywhere here is hill).  So the ground floor from my side (west) is underground level 1 from the other side (east).

Common Room in the church with pingpong table

Common Room in the church with ping-pong table

When you go in, you get to the back of the sanctuary.  And on the right, there is a door to the common room for after service refreshments.  There is a ping-pong table for the youth activities.

Simultaneous Translator Receiver

Simultaneous Translator Receiver

From the common room, you can enter the tech room where they control the overhead projector and computer, sound mixer and everything.  Even they have simultaneous translator equipment.  Today, a guy was translating in the tech room only for me.

Christmas Year Round

Christmas Year Round

In Bethlehem, it is Christmas year round.

Childrens' Story Time

Children’s Story Time

The service was much like ours in Canada or America (I mean PCC or PCUSA).  And there were about or little more than fifty people including children.  There was a Children’s story time, and then they went for Sunday School.  Though the service was much like ours, the demographic was quite different.  They are mostly young parents, probably around 20s and 30s.  I think that is good sign because even here, the church goers are mostly seniors for Greek Orthodox.  And the service was about hour and half (thank God it is not three hours like Greek Orthodox).

Back to School Gift

Back to School Gift

All the children were given a gift package at the Sunday school because the school begins tomorrow.

Playground at Church

Playground at Church

I know the churches in North America usually have yards and some rich Churches (like my church which is Knox Presbyterian Church in Naperville) have even its own playground.  That is not true for churches in Korea.  I also haven’t seen any playground at Greek Orthodox Churches.  But this Presbyterian church has its own small playground.  I love it!

Olive Everywhere

Olive Everywhere

And it is kind of law in Palestine and Israel that where there is yard, there are olive trees.

I found that the Presbyterian church in Beit Sahour comes here to join the Sunday service because they do not have a lot of people, and it is the daughter church of Baraka Bethlehem Presbyterian Church.  They also have a day-care and education centre in Beit Sahour.  So instead of walking back hour and twenty minutes, I got a ride back home.  And thank God that the Beit Sahour Presbyterian church is literally right next door!

In the refreshments, people asked me a few questions such as if I am alone.  I guess they meant if I am single because they also told me that they have good Christian girls.  So I told them “Ana mit-jawiz,” which means I am married.  Another lady asked me how long I’ve been here.  I asked her back, “in Palestine?”  Then she said, “Thank you for saying Palestine.”  To give you an advice who wants to travel West Bank later, it is not safe to call there “Israel,” and they do not really like to be called “West Bank” either.  They are happy when they hear “Palestine.”

Who knows this?

Who remembers this?

They sell some souvenirs in the church along with some Christian music.  Some of them are in cassette tape.  I cannot really remember when was the last time that I listened to the cassette tape.  And I don’t have a cassette tape player, so I could not buy this one even though it was cheaper.  But does not the sales mean people actually listens to it?

Arabic Gospel CD

Arabic Gospel CD

Instead of the cassette tape, I bought a gospel music CD in Arabic.  I can borrow this CD if you are my neighbour and you want it.  The church was selling it for 30 shekels.  And I found later that it is cheaper if you buy it at Amazon.  But that is OK, it is just 5 shekels (which is about $2), and I may think I helped the church.

It is not related to today’s topic, but: the father of this hosting family installed an alarm app from the Israeli government that warns the location and sounds the siren when the missile launch was detected from Gaza so that people can run to the shelter. And it sounds the siren twice every minute, literally.  But the location is mostly southern Israel, so we don’t have to run.  Well, actually we don’t have a shelter to run in Beit Sahour or any Palestinian area in West Bank.

Monday, 28 July 2014

Second Holy Land Trip – Twenty Fifth Day – Last day of digging

Today is my last day of digging.  Tomorrow I go to Tel Aviv to get the Egyptian Visa, and then Eilat to stay a night.

Still Digging

Still Digging

Because it is the last week of excavation, we were supposed to clean up all week for the last day aerial photo shoot, but we were actually digging more and more.  It is OK because I am leaving now, but I guess it would be very hard Wednesday.  Photo shoot is Thursday, and they must clean up by Wednesday.

My lovely Trainers

My lovely Trainers

After I finished my digging today, I threw away my trousers and shoes.  Both I bought in Canada as work pants and work shoes, and I wore them about five or six years.

Bottom of the shoes

Bottom of the shoes

This is the bottom of my shoe.  My Nike shoes travelled from Canada to US, Israel/Palestine twice and finally died in Israel.

From Tel Aviv to Cairo is about 250 miles or 403 km.  The distance between New York and Chicago is 713 miles or 1147 km.  It is about one-third, and the airfare is over $400 and also it took 15 hours mostly because of waiting for the connection.  Stupid.

Well, anyway I need to get the Egyptian Visa by tomorrow.  And I need a passport photo, which I do not have right now.  And I do not know where I can take my passport photo in Tel Aviv.

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Missionary, Servant of God?

Some days you just want to cry. Today is one of those days to me.

Last year I met a couple from Korea. They are very nice people, both are ministers’ kids. They looked like having very strong faith, telling me that their calling (and wish) is to be missionary to Tibet. The guy had a degree in theology from South Korea. I was very impressed about their vision and calling, but I asked them why they came to America not going to Tibet.

He said that he wanted to study more in America. So I gave him some information about seminary because I was also looking for a good seminary. Even we went to TEDS open house together.

The couple has been married for several years but they told me they avoided the pregnancy. After a while, the couple asked me to pray for them to have a baby because they had been trying to have one since they arrived to America but was not successful. I said yes, and asked why.

They said that they had problems in admission, and there is no way for them to get the green card. I don’t know it is true or not but they believe that if they have a baby, then they will automatically get green cards. This is their theory – Their baby will be born in America having US citizenship. The government has no other option but to allow the couple to stay in America by giving them green cards because the little US citizen must be raised by parents. I am not an immigration expert, so I don’t know if it is true or not. But this made me so disappointed.

I haven’t met them for several months, but recently I heard about them. The guy is not seeking seminary any more because he has a problem with his English score, but he is seeking any kind of school including ESL. They just want to stay in America. They want it desperately.

I am just confused and disappointed. Where is their calling from God? Was it just a lie? Did they ever actually wanted to be missionaries to Tibet or they always just wanted to stay in America from the first place? Is America that good, better than God’s calling or heaven? I just don’t know what they have deep inside their hearts.

I just want to cry today.

My other postings related:

True Missionary

Anyone is missionary

가끔은 그냥 울고 싶을 때가 있다. 오늘이 내게는 그런 날이다.

작년에 한국에서 온 한 부부를 만났다. 참 좋은 사람들이고 둘 다 목사님 자녀로 강한  믿음을 갖고 있는 듯 보였고 티벳에 선교하러 가는 부르심을 받았고 그러길 원한다고 했다. 남자는 한국에서 이미 신학 학위를 받았다. 그들의 비전과 부르심에 깊은 감명을 받았고 티벳에 안가고 왜 미국에 왔냐고 물었다.

미국에서 공부하기 원해서라고 대답을 들었다. 나도 신학교를 찾고 있었기 때문에 정보를 좀 줬고, 심지어 TEDS 학교 입학설명회도 같이 갔다.

그 부부는 결혼한지 여러해 됐지만 피임을 하고 있었다고 했다. 한참 후에, 그 부부가 아기 생기게 기도해 달라고 부탁을 했다. 미국에 오고나서 아이를 가지려 하는데 잘 안된다면서. 기도 하겠다고 하면서 왜냐고 물었다.

그들의 말은, 입학에 문제가 있고, 영주권을 받을 길이 없다는 것이다. 이게 사실인지는 모르겠지만 그들이 믿기로는 아이가 생기면 자동으로 영주권을 받는단다. 그들의 말로는, 아기는 미국에서 태어나 시민이 될 것이고, 정부는 부모에게 영주권을 줘서 미국에 머물 수 있도록 할 수 밖에 없다는 것이다. 왜냐면 그 미국 시민이 부모에 의해 길러져야 하기 때문에. 난 이민 전문가가 아니라서 진짜인지 아닌지 모른다. 하지만 너무 실망을 했다.

반년 이상 그들을 만나지 않았다가 최근에 그들에 대해 들었다. 남자는 영어 점수에 문제가 있어서 신학교를 알아보기 보다는 ESL을 비롯해서 아무 학교나 알아보고 있다고 한다. 그들은 미국에 체류하기를 원할 뿐이다. 그것도 아주 간절하게 원하고 있다.

난 그냥 혼란스럽고 실망스럽다. 하나님에게서 받은 그 부르심은 어디로 갔나? 그게 전부 거짓말이었나? 그들이 정말 티벳에 선교하러 가길 원한 적이 있긴 했을까 아니면 그냥 미국에 체류하길 처음부터 원했을까? 미국이 그렇게 좋은가? 하나님의 부르심이나 천국보다도 더? 그들 마음 깊은 곳에 뭐가 있는지 정말 모르겠다.

오늘은 그냥 울고 싶다.


True Missionary

한국에서 파송하는 선교사가 많은 이유

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Walmarts in Canada and America

Walmarts in Canada and America are very similar which is of course because they are one company. But there are still some differences between them.

In Canada, Walmarts have McDonalds as in-store restaurant in them while they have Subway in America.

In Canada, Walmarts have Western Union as banking service in them while they have Moneygram in America.

In Canada, Walmarts use MasterCard as their membership (credit) card while they have their own Discover credit card in America.

And maybe a few more.

캐나다와 미국에 있는 월마트는 매우 비슷하다. 같은 회사니까 당연한 얘기지만. 하지만 다른 점도 존재한다.

캐나다 월마트에는 구내 식당으로 맥도날드가 있는 반면에 미국 월마트에는 서브웨이가 있다.

캐나다 월마트에는 금융 서비스로 웨스턴 유니언이 있지만 미국 월마트에는 머니그램이 있다.

캐나다 월마트는 마스터 카드를 회원 신용 카드로 제휴해 쓰지만 미국 월마트는 자체 신용 카드인 디스커버를 사용한다.

그 외에도 몇 가지가 더있겠지만…

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Medical Exam

Yesterday I had a medical exam for immigration at a Korean hospital in Skokie, IL. I had an appointment at 3:15pm but I also had to wait until 3:50pm. They just worked in ‘first-come, first-serve‘ basis. What then is the appointment for? A Korean lady with her daughter left the hospital because they waited too long, then the doctor called her to her cell phone to come back. And the lady was served right away.

Actual medical exam did not last more than five minutes. They just asked me if I have any disease or allergy. Even they asked me how high I am. I paid $230 by cheque because they accept cheque or cash only.

I had to go back on Monday to pick up the envelope. In Canada, the hospital sends the result of the immigration medical exam directly to CIC (which is Citizenship and Immigration Canada), but in America, the applicant must include the medical exam result in the application package without opening the envelope and submit the whole package to USCIS (which is United States Citizenship and Immigration Service).

At first sight, Canada and America looked quite alike – neighbour countries using even same language. But almost everyday I find different things – really different, so different.

어제는 스코키에 있는 한국인 병원에 가서 이민 건강 검진을 받았다. 예약이 3시 15분이었는데 3시 50분까지 기다렸다. 예약 상관없이 오는 순서대로 봐주는데 그러면 예약은 뭐하러 받나? 딸을 데려온 한국인 아줌마 한분은 기다리다 그냥 나가버렸다. 그러자 의사가 핸드폰으로 전화를 해서 돌아오라고 하더니 바로 진찰을 해줬다.

실제 검진은 약 5분도 안 걸린 듯 했다. 병이나 알레르기가 있는지 물어보고, 심지어 키가 얼마냐고까지 물어봤다. 230불을 수표로 써줬는데, 현금 또는 수표만 받기 때문이다.

월요일에 봉투를 찾으러 다시 가야 한다. 캐나다에서는 이민 건강 검진을 하면  병원에서 결과를 바로 이민국으로 보내는데, 미국에서는 영주권 신청자가 검사 결과를 봉투로 받아서 (봉투를 절대 뜯으면 안되고) 영주권 신청서와 함께 패키지로 해서 이민국에 접수해야 한다.

처음에는 캐나다와 미국이 참 비슷해 보였다. 이웃 나라인데다 말과 글까지 같으니까. 그런데 요즘에는 거의 날마다 다른 걸 발견한다. 정말 달라 많이 달라.

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