Oh dear. This happened far too many times. At first I hoped it was just the slip of the tongue and they accidentally said the wrong name but really they knew we went to South Korea for our traditional wedding. Then I realised many people couldn’t actually remember where my husband was from, even though they’d met him and even had conversations with him. Is he just some generic Asian man to them? Asia is a country right?

The other disturbing thing is that people are assuming that somewhere like Thailand and South Korea are pretty much the same thing. This is so insulting to both Thai people and Koreans who have very different cultures. How are people this ignorant about other countries?

I know it annoys Koreans so much when people assume South Korea is some third world country. People who can’t think of one single thing they know about Korea while they watch their Samsung TV and then go drive their Kia car. While it’s easy to laugh at strangers who don’t know, it’s much sadder when it’s a good friend who is ignorant. Like a friend of my family who thought Japan was the capital city of China… even though my brother has been living in Japan for several years.

I really hope this changes. It is quite embarrassing how little some Australians know about the Asian region even though we are right next to it.

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