Dear Reader, I hope to feature photos of our trip to the United States and stories about our recent journies in upcoming blog entries. I’m still trying to shake off jetlag and fatigue and at the same time focus on settling down back at home. Last night I ended up crashing at about 8 p.m. and will retire again soon. I’ve been told that jetlag is much worse when returning from the Americas to Asia than when traveling to the Americas from Asia. My son has also been battling jetlag and has woken up at 2 a.m. or 4:30 a.m. every morning since we returned. My wife is also battling fatigue. We’re all thankful for the three-day weekend and upcoming Korean national election holiday next Wednesday to assist with our recovery.
On the subject of recovery and election day…the recent assault on Grand National Party (GNP) Chairwoman Park Geun-hye, daughter of former Korean President Park Chung-hee, made big news, and it may be a decisive factor in next Wednesday’s Korean national elections. An assailant attacked Ms. Park with a box-cutter knife during a political rally, lacerating her face. The 10-centimeter wound required 60 stitches. Doctors at Yonsei University’s Severance Hospital, one of the best in Korea, treated her wound, although the scar will remain after it heals.
Some people have whispered that the incident, which occurred just one week before crucial national elections, was politically motivated. A possible connection between the assailant and the Uri Party leave some suggesting that the GNP’s main rival political party is somehow directly involved. Others conjecture that the timing and resulting surge in popularity of the GNP casts suspicion on the GNP. Both allegations seem baseless. I’m sure that the Korean media will be able to feret out a story that the Korean public will embrace–whether it is true or not. It seems absurd to me that either the Uri Party or GNP was directly involved in the incident, although stranger things have happened. It’s one week until the election–not much time to uncover the true motivation of the assailant. The one truth that seems to be emerging is that the assault has been a boon to the GNP because it has piqued public sympathy for the GNP’s leader, translating into a noticeable increase in support for the GNP leading up to next week’s election.