Today was the second travel day, and the bus set its course for Busan. Busan is a famous shipping area and shipbuilding area for many companies. After eating our daily breakfast, we boarded the bus and headed towards Busan for our first site visit for the day. During the day we had two site visits schedules. The first was the Jinsan Marine Management company and the second was Hyundai Heavy Industries. After around an hour of driving, we had arrived at the first site visit. While on the bus I had some time to catch up on some sleep and get an advance on some of my blog posts.
With the halt of the bus, we all knew we had arrived. We then got off the bus and entered the marine management company. The first part of the visit was a general overview of the Jinsan company, their goals, and their history. In addition to this, we also learned a fair bit of information about the owner of the company and his experience in the shipping industry and as an economics teacher. Following the information session, we took a tour of the Jinsan facilities and storage area. Being that the company exports various parts to ship producers, they value their space and organization. Every building we visited has a unique purpose for daily operations when shipping to various partners across the world.
After visiting the marine management company, we stopped for lunch. For lunch, we had fried rice with a fried egg on top and a side salad. I completely ignored the chopsticks and went right for the spoon for this meal. I was a big fan of this meal and finished relatively quickly. When the meal was finished, we had some time for roaming around the building and then we had to board the bus.
Once boarded, we went to the second site visit for the day which was Hyundai Heavy Industries. This tour was mainly comprised on the bus. I can honestly say this was the coolest thing I had ever seen. The shipyard was ginormous. Ships the size of two to three soccer fields stood in front of us as we passed by. Cranes the size of skyscrapers moved parts across the shipyard like a claw game. However, we were not permitted to take pictures during the tour, so I can’t show you what we were able to experience. At the end of the tour we were on our way to the hotel for our one-night stay.
What I noticed during the site visits today was that even though not all systems in Korea are “smart,” each system is built to maximize efficiency for completing the needed work in the shortest amount of time possible. Both Korea and the USA always aim to optimize their method of business to lead the market in efficiency.
Pulling up to the hotel was an exciting experience being that we came about three feet from the main doors. With my suitcase in one hand and my backpack in the other, I went up to my room and decided to do laundry. This was relatively simple after using the google translate app to navigate the washing machine. Moreover, my group and I took this time to work on the team final project for around two hours. After taking this time our project was finished and all that was left was polishing and practice.
Having been content with our work, we all went back to our rooms for some downtime. My downtime was short lived being that I was starving. My group and I decided to eat some local Korean street food and then go back to the hotel for the night. While roaming the street, I had realized that Korean people are much more open to talking to others than people in America. The Korean people were very friendly and asked about who we were and why we were in South Korea. Overall, I have enjoyed my interactions with a new culture and hope to continue this interaction through the rest of the trip.