• Updated : 2018.12.10 월 17:49
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Las Vegas Lingering in My Mind
김현경 기자  |  iloveseunggi@nate.com
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승인 2012.09.04  11:07:15
트위터 페이스북 미투데이 요즘 네이버 구글 msn
 
    This summer vacation, my mom and sister and me planned to go to western part of America including San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Laughlin. This travel was right after my final exam, so I had no time to find information about the cities I was going. This ill-prepared behavior brought me an unforgettable memory travelling to the United States of America.
   Our team, Hana, saw lots of superb natural landscapes in the USA. My party also enjoyed our journey and was having great time in a foreign country. Our third destination was Las Vegas. I was really looking forward to visit this enticing city. My cousin goes to University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) and heard lots of attractions about this great city. Sure enough, I had a lifetime of experience. Nobody around me would have had this experience. Also this great situation wouldn’t happen to me again in my lifetime.
 
   

With my mother and sister

 
    Differences between Korean culture and American culture are inevitable. There was misunderstanding between counting age in the way of Korea and the US. American legislation count age in full, it means that it counts age in man. Counting in man means that when you are born, your age starts from zero and grow a year older your birthday passes. But counting age in full means that your age starts from one and grow a year older as the New Year starts. USA is a federal state that each state has extensive right of autonomy. In Nevada State, where the chief city Las Vegas is located, majority is recognized over 21-year-old in full. After becoming of legal age, they are allowed to drink, smoke, and have access to casinos amongst others. My Korean age was 22 at that time, 20 years old in full. Looking at the sign that says "Under 21 are not allowed to gamble", I just passed the sign because that wouldn't matter my act. I was enjoying slot machines in casino after giving my passport to my mom in case of losing it. But suddenly the hotel security came to me and asked for my ID card. Giving my identification card, he said that I am 20. I had to call my mom to bring my passport and gave it to security. Security shook his head from side to side and said "Minor Gambling". He took my mom and me to underground interrogation room. What I was saying was video-taped and recorded. I was so frightened and was just waiting for police to come. When the police came, she said that I need to go to justice court. We had nothing to do but to call our tour guide to help us. Eventually, our tour guide came and implored for help. Luckily, I extricated from the room in 3 hours after signing on the sheet that says "Signing this form is a promise to appear-not an admission of guilt”.
    If I had known that America counts age in full, this situation wouldn't have occurred. I regret that I didn't study the law of the place of sojourn, even just a little. In case I had won jackpot, I had to pay a fine of 2,000 dollars. The rest of our stay in Las Vegas became less exciting that I couldn't enter a casino and watch the slot machines. After 5 months, I want to visit this seductive city again when I become a blameless part of the majority. One more thing I learned from this affair is that carrying passport is really important. In foreign countries, we can identify ourselves only by passport which is internationally recognized. In foreign countries, always carry your passport and don’t forget to study such countries you are going!

By Kim Hyun-kyung, Tribune Reporter

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