Friday, July 31, 2009

The vacation that was not....

Ugh how can I say this...

/Rant on

Well basically today and yesterday we had a short little vacation. However, one company that I go to would not allow the class to be canceled. The reason? Apparently before I took over the class in question too many classes had been canceled. It pains me sometimes that people do not think of how what they do, can affect other people. I took the classes gladly because...well we can not afford to lose the contract. Perhaps in Oct. I will see if I can take some real rest then....

Boy does this suck. We made the most of it though. We took a nice long nap, had a good walk, took some drives around town. Ordered out etc.

/Rant off

Ok I feel a little better now. We have another 11 weeks or so until our next break, guess we just gotta suck it in, and work on.

Tata!


Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Things We Do...............

Have you ever sat down and thought what you would or have done for love....

Sounds funny but I once waited for Jemal outside in the snow for 6 hours....i was worried that i won't see him when he gets back if i waited inside so ...waited outside in the cold...LOL...

It is truly amazing the things we can do when we love someone. At times, we do things beyond what we thought we could...love is powerful....1 Corinthians chapter 13 talks about love ...

Love is beautiful. It's a blessing to have people who love you and to love them back.

Sky is the Limit!

I have been thinking about this today....it is so true that "We limit Ourselves"..we don't want to believe it and so we are always trying to blame someone or something else for not being who we want to be or achieving what we want...but in the end we have nobody else but ourselves to blame.

We want to do many things and try new things .....We have the money and the time to do those things, but the only reason why we are not doing those things that we so want to, is because we are limiting ourselves...maybe we are afraid..afraid of change...afraid of leaving our comfort zone and stepping into the unknown....but we cannot know the joys and the pains if we never try.

We need to free ourselves....Jehovah God gave us the power to choose what we want....Adam had a choice....we do too!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tuesday / Thursday

Ok so it is only Tuesday but it feels like a Thursday cause tomorrow is the last until the 2 day break starts. Korea is funny like that. We have sandwich days in which a Tuesday,Wednesday, or a Thursday is a holiday. These feel so weird. You feel great the night before, but then you get the Sunday blues the following evening.

3 day weekends do happen, just not as much as I would like. I can be choosy though, I have to take whatever I can get. Of course we would like to travel but it depends on the weather. Last week we were told that about 10 days of very dry, hot weather was in store for Korea. Uh...NOT looking outside it is raining now, and it was cloudy yesterday.

Actually hot and dry is not so bad at all.

Ugh I feel tired even though I slept well yesterday, Yogita too. I need caffeine, in a very very bad way. Green tea here I come!!!!

/tata

Finally a mini vacation!

Well yeah this week we will have a short vacation. This week on Thursday is our last day of classes for this week. So it will be a nice little break for us, we of course want to travel and take pictures and post em. I hope so, we will see.

Three day weeks tend to fly by. On Thursday night I will eat something, that might not be so popular with people back in America. LOL

I will fill you in when the time comes, because well it is still up in the air. I have actually been craving it...so....

All is well so far for us. Our work load has increased, and we are actually in damage control mode. Yogita, and the other staff at our school understands what I mean. Ugh a tough week it was last week.

I am glad that Monday is behind us......now bring me a tuesday/thursday!

LOL

Tata

Jeyo

Friday, July 24, 2009

Friday....and fools...

You see we have been here for like....9 years for me (almost), and about 10 years for Yogita. Yet we see the same things over and over again. Newbies coming in and making a fool of themselves.
They make absolute comments about things. Ugh. I hate it. Fortunately tomorrow is Friday so that means we will have a nice 2 day break. Now that we are back to what we were years ago (managing) It means the fun easy times are over. We have to be the MOST flexible. I kid you not. I will make sure that other teachers are not coming here just to have fun, and bitch and moan about the culture here. It makes me sick.

Here are the 3 stages people go through when they come to a foreign land. First...they LOVE IT, next...they HATE IT, finally they figure out that they can live with the weird aspects of Korean culture, and they like it. All the time they usually have a I know all there is to know about Korea attitude, while offending people left and right.

Ugh...anyways have a good Friday....err.....

Jeyo

/tata

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Already wednesday....

Time just keeps on flying by. I mean it seemed like yesterday that it was Monday morning, and I was struggling to get out of bed. Now we are at the middle of the week. Korea, wow we have been here for so long now. I have been here almost 9 years, while Yogita is almost 10 years. This is one place we know so well, that it is painful to think about settling somewhere else.

We are all human I guess. Here I am an African American, and living it up here in South Korea. Back in L.A I have heard that relations between African American, and Korean Americans are usually tense. Here? I feel none of that here. Just the normal xenophobia from time to time. It is so normal for me that I just don't give a poo.

Today in class I was talking to my students about road rage. Here in Korea this amounts to mostly just verbal exchanges, or a "mean" stare! In America if people drove like they do here, we would have road homicide! One nice thing about being here...understand the rules.

Not too long ago an English teacher got into it with a Korean man. The Korean man punched the teacher (not hard enough to do serious damage, but a punch is a punch), so the English teacher laid a big 99 pounder into the guy. He was laid out flat...with a broken nose.

You see in Korea conflicts like this are usually handled through "blood" money. So it really depends on who gets "damaged" the most. So if I am acting like an ass, and I start a fight with someone, and he knocks my block off...he pays me! Here it is a good idea to walk away, or make sure there are many witnesses if something goes wrong.

We had a car accident and it worked in our favor, there were many many witnesses, and the fool tried to run away. LOL and our car was at a complete stop. The nicest 15,000 bucks we ever made! LOL
Ok time to go...

/Tata

Thursday, July 16, 2009

To Farewells

As Yogita put it, we have seen many come and go. It gets painful when you get to know people over time. I remember when the teacher who is leaving came to our school. (we do post names of people we are not very close too, and who we have not asked their permission, so in the early post of my students years ago, I got permission from them to post).

This teacher was a valued asset and did very good work, not just to their students, but also to Gunsan's community. I regret that I will not have time to join a farewell party tomorrow. I talk with George everyday to encourage him. I cannot skip a day. He needs DAILY guidance, that means CONSISTENCY. So I can not join a farewell party for the teacher who is leaving. I will do so here.

I will say "Thank you for all you have done." When I interviewed you I knew at that point you were right for job, and could adapt easily. I must say that I pride myself on my ability to learn about about other people, through communication, and observation. You gave with all your heart. I remember your difficult times, and some happy times. I can say this Jeyo is very glad to have known you, and will always be here for you, so we wish you the best to you and yours!

Tata

p.s WOW 3 post today....better get it off before midnight passes!

Saying Goodbye!

I hate Goodbyes! Well, tomorrow one of the teachers who have worked in our school for about 5 years or more is going to leave. She and her husband are moving to another province. When she first came to our school Jemal interviewed her for the position. Jemal and I have known her and worked together for years. We wish them both the best.

Being explorers like we are, we meet many new people and experience alot of new things...overtime we make these bonds and develop friendships and it is very hard to say goodbye when the time comes...but that's part of life..life goes on!

This is one thing i like about traveling and exploring you never know what you will find or experience but in the end you will always have fond memories to cherish!

Another day another dollar.

Today Yogita was not feeling well. It might be the weather, or perhaps something she ate. I dont think it is the latter, because we ate the same things yesterday, and I am doing quite well physically. She is on the mend as usual, we both recover very fast. Perhaps tonight if it is not raining we will go for a walk. I have been running around like a headless chicken this past 4 weeks.

Ugh. Well Yogita I will ask Yogita when she is feeling better about that word. It is so interesting that even though Koreans oops! Korean Americans live in America they bring their culture with them. However, when they come back to Korea, to settle down, or work, they often have difficulties.

Ok I gotta go...another day another dollar.....oh hum!

/Tata

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Ok time for a new food post....


So it is Wednesday, and I am going to show you what we had for lunch.

I should have taken a picture. I had Man-du Ramyeon. Yummy!

We also ate some deep fried squid, pizza man-du (not my favorite...Yogita loves it!)

Ok on with the pictures.....


Basically as you can see from above there are dumplings (meat, and veg filled) with the noodles. It can be very spicy, but I have acquired a taste for spicy food....yummy! Fiery poo anyone?

Tata

Rainy day

Wow, it rained cats and dogs today. It was a normal day basically. However, the rain. Here in Asia we get the monsoon season. Picture rain that is so heavy that at times you can be completely soaked within seconds of being exposed to the rain. That is how is was today, and every now on and off.

Well I want to talk about ultra portable laptops today. In my job I need a portable solution. Current my 17" desknote is just too heavy. The answer mini laptops. These babies have great battery life, and enough power for basic needs. These needs would include web surfing, blogging, emailing, and basic word processing.

A large portion of my work is word processing. I edit papers, and create study sheets for my classes, in addition to syllabuses for my different classes. A mini note book is so helpful in this regard. They are cheap, powerful enough for the tasks, as was mentioned above. Did I mention that they are portable...ultra like portable? These bad boys are only about a 2 pounds, with the functionality of a p4 class desktop.

I am so tempted to buy one of these.

Omorro what are you up to these days?

Ok tata....tomorrow..MORE FOOD FROM THE HERMIT KINGDOM!!!!!

Monday, July 13, 2009

For Omorro Hae Mul Tang!



Yep thats right folks tonight we are going to take a look at another dish. This one I loved back in the day like 8 to 9 years ago. Now...I am not so keen on it. The name Hae-Mul-Tang means Seafood Soup. It is basically shell fish of many types, shrimp, crab, and even cray fish! (One reason I am not so keen on it now...I keep remembering zoology 1 and 2...YUCK).






Ok first we need pictures of this....it is easier to explain with it....
ok in this soup you cant see crabs, or crayfish. I think you can see what I mean. Basically it is a soup with a fish stock with red chilly pepper power, and green leafy vegs thrown in. In this dish you can see shell fish looks like a clam to me.

Ok another pic....this is a double whammy but I will handle the second dish which is not fully in the picture tomorrow...or later...you know...uh ok that sucked. Ok the FIRST picture shows another hae mul tang dish. Basically in Korea you will find many different types of dishes even though they may have the same name. I hate it when people generalize. As small as Korea is there is allot of diversity here. Some good, some...not good at all! But that is a post for another time.

Kim bab well hmmm no I want to use a separate post for that one, in Anchorage you can get spring rolls, they are Korean kim-bab people. NOT JAPANESE. The Japanese colonized Korea, and tried to take away their national identity.

Well I could not find one with the crabs, and cray fish. I might have made a mistake, OR things have changed since 2000, and 2001.

Much love to you all!

Tata



Busy weekend....

We had very little time to just ourselves last weekend. I want to change that this coming weekend...4 days from now not counting today!!!
It is raining a bit heavy these days. So we might just stay in.

Today one of my students was telling me about a young English teacher she met here in Gunsan. He is 24 and my student is in her late 20's. Age is a big deal in Korea, it always has been. This young guy comes over to Korea, and learns how to say a few phrases. It sounds cute, or nice, IF you are totally ignorant about Korean customs. He would often speak with out adding the respectful form of "yo". For example: "I am sorry" In Korean "Mee-an hae" is fine if your talking to someone who is the same age, or younger. However, to an older person "Mee-an hae yo" is the correct form.

These things seem small at first, but can cause alot issues later. It annoys me when I see people come over here, and act like they are experts on everything here. Usually they say things in an absolute way. They might say "Koreans always do this, or that", and they have barely been here for a few months. Usually the comments people like this make, are often judgemental. We usually avoid meeting people due to this, and other reasons.

Take this for instance, we are going to dinner. There are perhaps 6 people, all from native English speaking countries. When it comes time to pay the bill.....there is a huge animated (and very loud), debate on who should pay what, and for what, how much of what did you eat yadda yadda yadda yadda. Once Yogita and got fed up and paid the whole bill, and left. Everyone was thanking us not realizing we were annoyed.

Of course you have to consider that many of these teachers are just out of university, and this is their first real job.

Oh well.....

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Mmmm Food. Kam Ja Tang!




Kam Ja Tang, when translated literally means potato soup. However, it is allot more than that. Usually nowadays there is only 1 potato in the dish. Is some places in ole Gunsan they serve many potato's. Ok OK enough so if there is only 1 potato what is the main ingredient in the dish? Well it is the back bone of a pig. You heard me pig back! You basically are served a steaming savory dish (uh very spicy actually) with vegetables, and clear noodles.

You have to tease the meat off of the bones, while eating the vegetables, and broth. Usually a good kam ja tang restaurant has many side dishes. So it is possible to fill yourself on just the side dishes alone! Most restaurants will refill side sides.



Now when the dish is served it is not ready to eat. The meat is boiled, but the vegetables need to be cooked while in front of you. Ok ...enjoy...I know I do!