It wasn’t the first time they’d laid eyes on each other.
He, a sophomore, needed to borrow a textbook on French culture. Out of the 50 or so students in his class, there she was... a familiar face.
But that exchange was suddenly so much more. Their fates entwined within a few minutes of that glance.
It was 2005. Kang Jae Bo and our colleague Kim Jung Lim were taking the same course at Jeju National University. They had also studied at the same teacher’s college at JNU. He math, she English education.
Though she was initially singled out for the request of the book, Jae Bo was instantly smitten. She, it turns out, took just a bit longer to reciprocate.
Jung Lim told me their story in The Weekly’s office last week. She recalled how at that first meeting, when she saw Jae Bo’s smile and heard him chuckle, she knew he was something special.
▲ Kang Jae Bo and The Jeju Weekly's Kim Jung Lim. Photo by Kang Dae Hoon
She was reassured that he would be a good guy, she said. And since the ball was in her court she playfully asked Jae Bo to pay her back for the use of the book.
“You should take me to dinner,” she proposed.
Their first date — they’ve celebrated it every year since — was on Oct. 23, 2005. Jung Lim told me they intend to keep marking it with the same sense of happiness as their wedding anniversary, April 8.
Why such a long time between the two places on the calendar? She told me Jae Bo has proposed a number of times. She always put it off, saying she wanted to have a full-time job before settling down.
The Weekly was that job.
Jung Lim and Jae Bo have always intended to spend their lives together on Jeju Island, and specifically Seogwipo City.
It’s no exaggeration to say she is a very big fan of her hometown — so much so I soon entrusted her with the majority of our Seogwipo-related stories and series. She worked very diligently over the last year.
Even when the long hours and daily commute to and from our office in Jeju City drained (sometimes alarmingly) the color from her face, it never affected Jung Lim’s bright demeanor in the office.
Though she will leave the paper to settle down as a newlywed in Seogwipo, she will keep writing for the paper as a contributor, something which I greatly appreciate. I’m sure our readers will, too.
Please join me in wishing the happy couple a long and rewarding life.
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