At the Kyongju World Expo (October 2000).
(Please read this before you copy our photos or text.)

Korea probably would like to think it's nothing like Japan, since older Koreans carry around some pretty unpleasant memories of the Japanese occupation. Well, sorry, guys. There are more similarities than you might care to admit.

Cartoon mascots, for one. You see them at businesses and tourist traps. They even show up in ads for banks and - of all places - on signs for police stations (photo, left). Cartoon cops!

The flower sculptures above were about the most dramatic display Margaret saw of the cartoon mascots for the Kyongju World Expo, which she visited in late October of 2000. These mascots (in other forms) were all over the expo site. If you're familiar with the typical Japanese cartoon mascots, you can see how these are similar and yet a little bit different, with their own Korean accent.

The man in front of the sculptures is Margaret's taxi driver. He not only delivered her up to the expo, he also found her a place to stay, helped her buy a ticket to the expo, and saw that she got inside with no trouble. Now that's service.

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