Worst Blogger Ever/Season 2 Premiere

7 03 2009

Sorry for being one of the worst bloggers ever…

Let’s do one of those recap episodes. Since this is kind of like Season 2 now. I was back in Seattle for the break between semesters, and did some travelling and such in the US, went to Ohio, New York, and Canada (yes, I said it is in the US). Once those domestics adventures were overwith I took some bartending classes, and I am now a graduated bartender. I will also be getting my license once I turn 21, next month. That basically sums up my break, I then went back to Korea on February 22nd.

Korea is doing great this time around. It is colder than I expected, thats my only real complaint. I just really like it here. Well, that and I am burning through money right now meeting all these new people, to replace my friends from last semester. I suppose that is some sort of necessary evil or something though. I have been spending more time doing more Korea-related things though. Listening to more Korean music and watching more Korean TV/Movies.  My new roommate is pretty good about doing that sort of thing. I am also training under him to increase my tolerance for spiciness, since it is obviously not high enough yet… The main thing that still really hurts is Dakgalbi when we order it extra spicy, and thats on Korean standards so it can be somewhat painful, but so delcious.

Things here are good though overall. I am looking forward to a new semester, with new people. Meeting alot more people from the West Coast which is nice since it will be easier to stay in contact with them once this stint is over. I will try to be better about keeping up with posts and stuff. I will hopefully write something about some Korean rap that I have been listening to alot lately.


Orientation Trip!

2 09 2008

So there was a weekend orientation trip, where everyone in the CIEE program left Seoul for the weekend and went to the country. For those that lack an attention span here is a brief list of things that happened:

1. Sat in a bus for many hours

2. Made paper, in a traditional style

3. Laughed as people came back to the traditional hotel really drunk, and did ghetto norebang

4. Climbed a mountain

5. Did a lot of shopping in the Family Mart at weird hours of the night

6. Ate eggs at 1AM

7. Picked tea leaves

8. Sat on the bus for waaaay too long

For those of you that have the ability to concentrate and actually read I shall explain these items a bit more. So the first day basically encompassed going to a huge land reclamation project where they are making a wall to block the ocean which will give the Koreans land about five times the size of Manhattan, which they will then change into various things like farmland and a space center… It is kind of a useless project. We then drove on to another city, which I don’t remember the name of, and there we made traditional paper. I can’t think of anything more to describe that. After that was over a group of us went to a really ghetto norebang (or karaoke room), and when we returned to the traditional-style inn that we were staying at for the night there were many drunk people running about. It was a very amusing and fun night filled with talking.

The next day we woke up to discomfort as we had slept on the floor (though I was fine as I slept on about ten pillows). If my memory serves me right we then drove to a mountain that we then proceeded to hike up. This was a fairly annoying hike as much of the path was just small boulders which were not very easy to traverse. The view, however, was quite spectacular and the whole experience was well worth it. After that we went to a Buddhist temple where we had dinner and watched an evening prayer, which actually was quite cool to me. The monks were reciting the Heart Sutra, which I forget what exactly it is but it is important. I thought that was pretty interesting. After that we went to our hotel which was a modern facility, and conveniently had a convenience store in the basement. We went there quite late and bought some eggs to have at about 1AM. That was great.

The next day, which was the last day, we spent the morning at a tea plantation and traditional village, where we actually were able to pick some tea leaves and keep them. I currently have my tea sitting on the counter drying out before I roast it to make some black tea. I just hope it doesn’t suck. We then proceeded to spend about eight hours on the bus…. it was boring. Mostly people just took pictures of other people sleeping.

Overall, orientation was pretty good. Nothing super exciting, but it was cool to get out of Seoul and things some other sides of Korea that I do not think I would have necessarily seen. So I guess you could say that it was good. Here are the pictures:

This is just a toll gate, but I thought it was pretty cool.

This is that land reclamation project, it goes really far into the Yellow Sea as you can see.

This is a cool Hyundai sign.

These are some Kimchee pots at the traditional inn we stayed at.

The same Kimchee pots and the building we stayed in.

This is apparently the prefered method of growing squash in the countryside.

The Buddhist temple we stopped at to watch the monks at work.

Here is the traditional village, with some rice fields in the background.

Packing up

23 08 2008

So I am currently packing up stuff… I’m not going to be overly dramatic and say I am packing up my life, because I am not doing that. I am just packing clothes and such. That’s not what I wanted to say though, what I wanted to say is that I hate packing. I am writing this post to delay the packing effort a little, also my laundry hasn’t been finished so I am waiting on that. Luckily my friends are coming over in about 20 minutes to have a little goodbye dinner thing and to generally hang out.

That is another good thing to delay my packing. The only concern I have with this packing up of stuff is whether or not I can confine everything to duffel bags. I hate wheely bags when travelling countries. I feel so stupid rolling them and they get in the way if public transport is in the works. Luckily, I do enjoy traveling by myself though, as I can do whatever I want and don’t have to wait or do what others would prefer. It makes my mind happy as I can focus on nothing really.

I don’t really feel like I am going to South Korea tomorrow. I think I should be feeling a bit more anxious or nervous about going to a new country where I do not speak the language or know much, but I am not so whatever. I didn’t even really do much for last things before I go. Overall, this pre-departure experience has been pretty easy and not all that nervous making, which I am a fan of.

So I guess tomorrow is the big day, when this blog will actually begin to explain things about my travels to Korea. So far it hasn’t had too much to do with Korea, so it should be a good change of pace. So probably the next time you hear from me I will be in a new place, across the world, where I know nothing. Then you will get a better understanding of what happens in Seoul.