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Summer Fest

Command has been promoting the K-16 summer fest for over a month now. Come to summer fest! It’s a Friday off! All the cool people from not just this base, but Yongsan and the surrounding Seongnam community will be there!

Naturally, the day arrives and there is rain. This isn’t just any rain, though: it’s a downpour. Torrential in volume, ferocious in intensity, seemingly endless in duration. This has led to some amusing scenes.

The BN HQ parking lot, for example, is filled to capacity. At its only entrance, a large sign warns “Parking Lot Subject to Flooding. NO OVERNIGHT PARKING.” An inch of water is streaming down the tarmac at the entrance.

In front of the community center, in the normal parking lot, there’s a raised stage and some enormous speakers connected to what looks like a pile of very expensive audio equipment. In front of this are about a hundred folding metal chairs. It’s all deserted, with the electronics entarped in plastic wrap.

Surrounding that are a dozen or so small awnings for the various services, groups, and businesses that want to make a good impression on the soldiers here. Most are simply deserted. Others are manned by one or two lonely-looking but dedicated people. The only one with any customers at all is selling $1 beers, $1 hotdogs, and free popcorn. There’s an air of mirth around that one, as though everyone suspects that they are being ridiculous. Periodically someone pokes the awning, pushing a solid sheet of water off the edge.

I like the rain, and I don’t like crowds. I probably should feel bad that this is how the summerfest is turning out, but honestly it is just amusing.

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