Resolve, Options, and Christopher

Two months ago my cousin and his family left for Korea after living in New York for the past three years. His wife is a scientist who received and offer and a grant to come to NYU to research and study under a professor. But with the economy the way it is, they weren't able to renew her contract this year, and when my cousin couldn't find a suitable job that would give him and his family a visa, they decided to go back.

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Canon 5D, 50mm, 1/200 @ f /1.8, ISO 1600

This seems to be the story with immigrant families who make the big decision to come here only to realize they can't stay for very long unless they are students, or if they jump through the hoops of the immigration office. My dad started from the ground up until he received his citizenship. And even though he prefers kimchi over coleslaw and KBS News over CNN, he can't imagine himself going back to Korea. He's an American now, and doesn't regret the decision that he made.

I overhear them talking once in a while about how young couples these days don't have the resolve to make it through the hard times. They give up too easily. It's a shame, they say, how families waste so much time and money figuring out where they want to settle down. This may be true to some extent, but I think they are trying to find their place in the midst of all the options presented to them; stories of prosperity and opportunity, like the ones that have brought Koreans to America for 3 generations.

But Christopher, my cousin's son, has an interesting option given to him. Though he's back in Korea right now, he was born at NYU's hospital on 1st ave. He's an American citizen. He's allowed to vote, allowed to run for office if he wanted to. I wonder if he will take advantage of it and come back once he gets older, or if being a citizen in America would be considered an advantage 20 years from now. Either way, I miss him and only wish the best to him and his parents.


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Canon 5D, 50mm, 1/200 @ f /2.0, ISO 1250

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Canon 5D, 50mm, 1/125 @ f /1.8, ISO 1250
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