Thursday, May 01, 2008

Protests

I had a little surprise when I left the office last evening. There is a Homever (think WalMart, but a little smaller) in the basement of our building. Last year, they had been the target of some labor union protests, and since that time every store has one or more policemen standing guard outside. Well, yesterday the policemen earned their pay. I emerged from the building, and was faced with a huge crowd of over 100 people. They were angrily chanting some slogans at the the store, and there were policemen and guards running everywhere. The crowd was well organized. One lady was chanting into a speaker, which another fellow was carrying around on his back. Most everyone was carrying a flag of some sort, and they all wore matching T-shirts. At one point, the started throwing eggs and sticks at the storefront.

Having heard horror stories about foreigners getting involved in police matters, I tried to stay as far away from this crowd as possible. I made my way around the swarm of people, to arrive at the crosswalk so I could cross the street. As I waited on the light to change, suddenly the whole crowd left the store and started to cross the street with me! Here I was in the middle of this huge group of angry protesters. I probably made it on the news last night, as I saw TV cameras and newspaper photographers documenting the event. Fortunately I arrived at the other side of the street without incident, and the crowd and I went on separate directions.

1 comment:

Stumbling Mom said...

I hear the Koreans protested the Olympic Torch on its run thru Seoul. That's the protest that could have given you global coverage!