Thursday, December 23, 2010

Busy week ahead!

We are loving the fact that this week is almost over, and that North Korea did not attack again.
Abu's getting married and it seems like yesterday it was 2006 at Pinky was getting married. Time sure does fly. We are preparing to return and visit family again. When is the problem now....

Next week we will be overloaded with work....2 teachers are taking vacations....

This week I was thinking about the current job situation in the United States. It really sucks. However, when people come over here to find work, they take what they have for granted. Then usually we get people calling back, or indirectly trying to get their old job back. Its funny.

In this job market people need to really cherish what they have. Don't complain, just try to make things work.

Our new place is almost completed, I am in the market for a LCD, PDP, or LED flat screen.
Oh well....

tata/

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Moving fun.....

I hate moving. Period. You have to uproot yourself and take all of your belongings to a new location. Now this means that if your a hoarder like me then that means that you have lots of stuff that you really do not need but you do not want to part with. For me that means pc hardware. I have motherboards (mainboards for some people), ram, graphic cards, harddrives, usb cables, and even more.

Actually it has been about 2 years since we have been in that apartment and well we had quite alot to haul out of there. Now, I am feeling sore tired, but so much better, more settled. This apartment has 3 rooms and is a bit larger than the first apartment we stayed at in Gunsan (abu remembers that place).

So here we are in a better place and a much better location....we will see how it goes from here.

/tata

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Lu Lu La La Land

Lu Lu La La Land

This is an expression on of my students used years ago to describe how Koreans react to world around them. It may come as a surprise for many but South Korea has one of the lowest crime rates in the world. You can walk around at 3am and you will be fine. (As for women, a bit of caution is needed)


In Philly I was robbed, chased, beaten up, the list could go on. If I were out late returning home, I was afraid, and was very cautious. If I saw someone walking on the other side of the street, I kept an eye on him, and kept a good distance.

Korea is at war. It is no joke, it isn't a game, its the real deal. I think that there are more exchanges of fire across the DMZ than the government would like to admit, or rather let the public know. Yesterday afternoon while I was chilling at home, eating lunch. North Korea fired 200 arty rounds at an inhabited island. 2 Korean marines died, and others were wounded, some of them civilians. It was an act of war.....oh but wait there is already a state of war. The general reaction from most people was: It makes me feel angry, but I am not worried about it.

People here including myself are living in a lu lu la la land. I need to come to grips with the reality that it isn't “safe”. Just because it was 200 km away doesn't mean that North Korea can't launch short range missiles at lets say.....Gunsan? I think if North Korea hit a more populated area, South Koreans might actually wake out of this lu lu la la land that they and myself are in. I just hope that there is no loss of life. I know it is stupid to think that way.....in war there is death.

Through out history man has been bring man to ruin since Abel murdered Cain. I hope I stop hearing "North Koreans are part of our nation, there is no need to fear violence from them."



/tata

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Long time no post...

Wow time sure does fly! There will be another wedding, this time it is our little Abu. I know she feels quite nervous about getting married. I also know it will be an exciting, while sometimes stressful transition to make. I am hoping that we will be able to keep in touch as well. I love technology and I know that my brother in law has a love for tech as well. It would be nice to trade notes.

We are moving to a larger apartment near where we used to lived. It is much better furnished, and well I love it. It has 3 bedrooms, so I am thinking of converting that small room into something. I don't want a office, as I am used to having my pc's in the master bedroom. George in time will be given a desktop (no net access though), and we will have all of his books ready for him. I plan to take him around to various museums, and outings. It is amazing how educating a trip outdoors can be. We might even hire a tutor to help out with math.

Next month we will be taking a flight to India for the wedding but I will post more on that as time passes.

My car on other hand has been through the ringer, I had to have the timing belt changed with the water pump. In addition the cam guide valve gave out, so oil was leaking into the combustion chamber....white cloudy smoke! It is all good now. Oh and she got a new bumper .

well...tata ^^

Friday, October 29, 2010

Slept at 4am......

I hate it when it happens during the week, but it is Friday so not too bad. Basically I could not turn off my cpu. Thoughts kept going through my head. We have a busy day ahead today. My morning class students are all busy so I have time to post this, and even get ahead on prep for next week. We have a another company renewing a contract...sooo thats sweet!

On a side note though I really hate insomnia it sucks. I kept thinking about our boys, my brown Abu. Thoughts about how to take of yet another round of level testing in an efficient manner. New movies that are coming out, cell phones I want to buy but won't, cause they are way to pricey.
Thoughts about my desktop, and how it seems to be a bit sluggish (not in games but, in every other activity). So that led me into making plans to reinstall the OS. Ugh.

We made dinner plans for Friday, I am still not sure if we ought to change them or not. The water in our building was shut off due to the water tank needing cleaning. I mean....what?! It is practically winter over here, and they feel the need to clean the tank now?! So we stayed at a motel over night. I guess that might have led to the insomnia.

Oh well....another day another dollar?

I think not. I needs my coffee.

/tata

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Winter.....

Finally we can feel winter here in Gunsan! Today was cold, and very windy. So we are getting ready for a long cold winter. This year I have made made a promise to myself, and my family; no driving if snow is on the roads. Its that simple. I don’t care if we have 1 or 2 cars, they will remain in the underground parking lot, where one they are protected from the elements ice, and snow, and two will never require digging to get it out.


I paid about 1.5mill won in damages to my car because I decided to drive. Not this time around. Another thing I am noticing that my Korean co-workers having been following this very simple rule for years. So it is that simple...NO DRIVING WITH SNOW ON THE GROUND...PERIOD. We will take taxis, or buses.


I mean in Alaska obviously people would tell me to get my head checked. Alaskan roads are much safer due to major arteries being cleared, and salted. Here.....even the inter city roads don't get enough attention. One student told me how due to snow not being cleared, dozens of cars were involved in a huge pile up!

Well that will not be us...not this time!


/tata

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

New beginnings

I feel more optimistic now, that the new teacher has arrived. The atmosphere is so much better. We have decided to make sure we do not hire someone who simply does not want to do the job. We have also decided that if we see we have made that mistake, they will be summerally let go. It is something we should have done 6 months ago.


Oh well all is well that ends well. Winter is coming and although I realize that it is fall, here in Gunsan it is a very short season. Fall began quite early for us, so I am thinking that winter will also come earlier that usual, and last for a longer period of time.


Jeyo is on the road to recovery thanks to Mom, Dad, Abu, and even George helped out! There is a possible wedding coming soon, so we are getting ready for it. I think I will have to take extra time off for this one. Ok I have to run! I still have pictures from Yeo-su that I need to post.


/tata

Friday, October 01, 2010

Finally is Friday!

It was a long week for us. Our little solider Jeyo is not feeling well, but he is full of fight! He even plays with a high grade fever. He is in the best of hands, and our prayers go to him.
George has been a great help to his little brother, and helps out a lot around the house.
I will be taking it easy this weekend, we had a lot on our hands this week.

I visited my friend for my car's monthly check up, she needs a couple of things done.
So to this week I say this "HA HA, I won! I made it to Friday!"

/tata

Monday, September 27, 2010

Wow.....

Wow, time flew by! We did not travel as we had planned, I really feel that it was not a good idea.
I am happy we did not go, in Seoul they received HEAVY amounts of rain. So much rain that in picture it looked liked cars where swimming! It is not common for Seoul to get so much rainfall.
Yogita and I rested, talked alot, rested, talked, played eve, called family. I forgot to get nice phone cards.....my fault.

Now I feel like things will return to normal. Normal was about 6 months ago. A new teacher will arriving. We will do our best to help the new teacher settle in. I think all will go well.

This weekend we will venture out, and travel. We haven't been traveling since our road trip, so I am eager to get out and take Yogi somewhere. She really loves to look out of car at nature as we drive by.

Overall I would say this chusok was the best in terms of time spent getting to know each other. Previous years it was all hustle and bustle, traffic jams, and basically the normal stress related to traveling during a peak season.

Sometimes it is nice to just kick back and chill!

/tata

Monday, September 20, 2010

The day before....

Well it turns out that today will be alot busier than I thought. I have to cover another teachers classes. It is all ok by me, they are good kids, that we have taught over the years. I am feeling a bit
drained though. We are going to hit the road tonight for a nice short drive (perhaps sun-cheon).
The thing is Chu-seok is at hand, and that means heavy congestion. Right now even in a small city like Gunsan it is looking more and more Seoul with the traffic congestion.

Many adult students will not come to class, so I am expecting to only a few faces, or perhaps no one. Chu-Seok has changed in its scope, and meaning over the years. Years ago people lived in small villages, so Chu-seok was a gathering that took place in the village. Today people go overseas, while others visit resorts throughout Korea. It was reported that hotels be at 90% capacity. That is bad news for us, many small hotels will have no room, or might charge higher rates.

We plan on using side roads, and avoiding the clogged highways. If you notice this weird paragraph style....its cause I am falling asleep as i am typing this.

Ok on to part 2!

/tata

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Nature!!!!

It was raining all yesterday and earlier today...it stopped raining now...everything looks clean and shiny...i especially love the sky after rain...it looks so blue and bright after the constant gloomy sky.....so i was listening to music and looking out of the window at the sparkling sky, freshly cleaned tress and the beautiful green fields...feeling the cool wind ruffle my hair...the air smelled of freshly churned earth.....the sky was filled with these fluffy white clouds that looked like soft cotton balls.....so close that you could almost reach out and touch them...it was AMAZING!!!!! i am a nature person...these kind of things make me feel very happy and relaxed...I like looking at the beauty that surrounds us and enjoying Jehovah's creation.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

September!

Finally the month most of Korea has been waiting for! This time Chu-sok falls right in the middle of the week. So Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday are holidays. YAAAY! We will be getting the Monday off (I am not sure about Friday, but hey its a Friday!).

So we now have some downtime coming. On another note, we have a typhoon heading our way. These typhoons are not as strong a hurricanes but they can still pack a wallop. I am really looking forward to the cooling rains. I plan to stay off the roads if heavy rains persist into the weekends.

When we were returning from our road trip, we had to drive in VERY heavy rain. I mean it was so heavy that it was blinding, visibility was perhaps 3 meters...on a highway! So...no driving in heavy monsoon rain for me.

So for the month of September I look forward to cooler temps, nearly a week off, and meeting the new teacher.

/tata

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Musings...

Wow! i have just realized that this weather really makes me think alot.......it's so hot and humid that you really need to sit still once you find a comfortable position....once you sit still you can cool down alot faster than if you are moving around...and sitting still for me equals thinking.....

So anyhoo, i was thinking about this sher (Urdu Poetry pronounced Shaayaree/shayari ..( शायरी )..a Sher is a verse or a couplet). This particular Sher that i was thinking about goes like this:

” Girte hain sheh-sawar hi maidan-e-jung mein. Woh tifl kya gire jo ghutnon ke bal chale”

I have always loved this sher. It means:

It is only those who ride into battle who fall (and have lived a life - implied)
Those who (crawl and cringe and are always complaining about life - implied) are on their knees, how can they even have a glorious fall !!

something like that....

I like it because we meet people like this all the time people who are ready to give you advice and talk about stuff they don't have the slightest clue about......also, i find this sher very encouraging...yes, we may fall but atleast we tried....

It's like in Eve ...sure you may loose a 50 million isk ship in a war or pew but atleast you tried your best, aleast you fought, atleast you flew beside your mates.....sometimes the experience is worth it
all.....sometimes its all about the experience...sometimes it's the journey thats important and not the destination....

So here's to the "experience" Beer Mug Clip Artof the unknown..be it life, relation-ships, work or a game like Eve....let's cherish the "experience" of being a part of something or someone!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Beating the heat!

It looks like today will likely be another scorcher. So I am going to take my little lady out while the sun is doing its worst. We will cruise around (I need a CD changer), and perhaps see a movie, eat at a local eatery in town, who knows?

So that is T-minus 3 hours.....or perhaps 2.5 hours!

/tata

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Hot....hot...hot...

The heat has returned but humidity is low. It feels much more comfortable, compared to last week.
I am thankful for the rains we had, now I would like some more please. I am going to make sure that we are not in doors during the hottest part of the day. Ok we are starving so we will go grab a bite to eat......


/tata

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Insights!!!!!




I love being out..... close to nature and pondering about a gazillion things that tickle my more intellectual and philosophical side from time to time...

so anyhoo we were near these majestic absolutely beautiful mountains filled with all sorts of different trees.....spruce, oaks, birch, pine, bamboo, palm, alder...bursting with various shades of green.....and it got me thinking of the beauty of Jehovah's creation and how truly amazing it is...and no matter how tiny and insignificant we may feel next to the wonders of creation we are the most important creation of all.....and every experience in the course of our life whether good or bad shapes us into who we are....and where we are.... right at this point in our lives.

And the experience they are also a wonderful thing...during our trip we saw the beautiful shapes carved out in the mountains and the cliffs..due to no other reason than erosion.....i will share the analogy one of my students gave...we are like these jagged stones and these life experiences good and the bad ones smooth the rough edges and shape us into these beautiful gems and makes us who we are ...precious and unique!!!!!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Much Needed Vacation


We took a 2 day vacation and it was Fun.....we visited Sunchon, Yosu, Pusan, Taegu, and Taejon...Beautiful scenery, majestic mountains, wonderful beaches, amazing valleys.....here is the route we travelled...we will be posting a series of post complete with pics. and a bunch of insights from our trip!!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Boat ride!!!!

Today was nice! We went on a boat ride! We have loads of pictures but our DSLR's battery is too weak now...

We had a nice lunch took a nap went to a pc room. Tomorrow I think Yogita wants to head to Deajon for some food shopping. Wow yeo-so is closer than I thought. I feel bad because the other previous attempts to make here failed because I took the wrong highway.

I am hooked on this place.....

Well now I am enjoying a nice drink back at the hotel..

/tata

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Suncheon City

Well we have arrived! It did n0t take too long to get here. We like this motel, and it is very easy to find if we ever want to come down here another time. I mean as you are entering the city it the largest motel that you see...you just can not miss it. I think I will change the way I travel in the future. Usually I would just drive and drive all night until I reached our location. This usually meant missing out on enjoying the amenities that motels can offer. We have a very nice 42 inch pavv tv, nice ac room, large comfortable beds, valet parking....uh ok I could do with out that (I park my own ride!). There is a pc as well so that I can play eve...heh. Poor Yogita...there isn't a wireless spot here so only one of us can use the pc at a time....aaannd that's me! Actually this really is not a big deal, she is watching TV and thinking about our boys.

We really like this place so we might stay another night here...but we will see.

/tata

Well what do you know!

A typhoon was headed to our area yesterday afternoon, and cooling rains came. Now it feels great! Lower humidity, temps seem a bit lower. I just wish we could have had more cloud cover today.
We are still thinking about what do for our little vacation. I think we ought to go on a mini road trip. We will see. Yogita is interested in some valleys, friends have been telling us repeatedly about nice and cool they are, even in this heatwave. Yesterday in my listening class, we watched a news clip from a CNN Ireporter. It was about the heat, and pollution in Moscow. According that that report...700 people are dieing everyday due to heat, and pollution. I do not know if it is nationwide or the Moscow area. The reporter also said that in Russia due to mild temps in summer, most people do not use AC. I am now in the market for an AC, so um if you have a portable ac unit....one with wheels....lets us know!

/tata

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Heat Wave.....

My goodness I have never wished for rain so badly in a long time. It is hot and humid, and I am thinking about getting an AC, perhaps a portable unit that can be wheeled around. We can place it near us, and run it for 1 hour, then shut it off. I have seen some for sale for only 100-200,000 won, so I hope I can find one.

Our apartment would really feel great because air gets trapped in it. So one hour of cooling might last for 2 hours or more, until we feel uncomfortable enough to switch the unit back on. Oh well the search is on!

/tata

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

The Past!

I was reading my little sister's blog and it just hit me..literally hit me...wow! this is so true...(i am quoting from her blog...hope u don't mind Abu)

The more anger towards the past you carry in your heart, the less capable you are of loving in the present.

When we are living in the past we see people through a veil...our judgement is colored by their actions in the past...so in reality we don't see them as they are rather what we think they are....we overlook so many chances of loving and really enjoying the present because we are truly not free of the past...The Bible tells us that we need to look to the future....i catch myself doing this more often than i would like to admit.....but i am trying to let go of past grievances, enjoy the present and optimistically look forward to the future....not easy but worth it!

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Life is but a dream.....

we were watching this movie "Repo Man" and in the movie the man actually is brain dead and due to scientific advancement he is able to live on in a dream world that his brain has created....it got me thinking of another movie that had a similar concept "Vanilla Sky".

It reminded me of the all time favorite melody "life is but a dream".....it is an interesting way to look at it...and just like in a dream we have the power to change things...we have the power to make choices and turn it around..change the outcome....

this is so true (Astrid Alauda): " Dreams are free, so free your dreams".

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Another post about food....

A friend of ours has come back from the United States after staying for about one month. She brought back some goodies for us, we did not ask for much because we did not want to burden her. We got pork rinds! We love this snack. I remember when I was a kid, and I would watch my father eat it. I would eat some but I thought it was sooooo disgusting! It tasted like fat, with some salt sprinkled on and deep fried so many times that it became crispy. My goodness just typing that makes me very hungry. I love the taste now! I want to bring some of it our dinner (we will meet on Friday evening), and see what my friends think about it.

Food, thinking back I remember spam. Spam on Saturday or Sunday mornings, with pancakes. I hated spam then. I would endure it when it would appear on my plate, but that was it. Now, I LOVE spam. Yummy! Spam with boiled eggs, and tea! I tihnk there some things from my childhood related to food I would like ot forget. Namely, codliver oil, YEEECCCCHH. That stuff was and I am sure still is....VILE. I remember the first time I allowed George to pick his own ice cream flavor...must have...3 years old or so. He choose chocolate. To this day our boy loves chocolate cake, and ice cream. Me....I am not that big a fan of chocolate ice cream. Something tells me though that in the near future, I might have to developed a taste for it.

Do not get me started on Korean food! I hated anything red when I first go here cause I knew what it meant. I would be burning from the inside out! Kam-cha-Tang, Dak-Kal-bi, kimchi stew, and many many others. I would only eat mild dishes for almost a year after I got here. I would eat Man-du-kuk (dumpling soup), sam-gyup-sal became a favorite (grill pork belly, similar cut like bacon but much thicker, and not cured). Now? The more spicy the more I crave it! I like Jam-bbong (a seafood, noodle dish...can be very spicy), I love yang-pum kal-bi, porks ribs marinated in an extremely spicy sauce. The list really could go on, in fact I get annoyed when we go to a new restaurant and they assume that because I am a foreigner that I would like to have my food prepared mild. It often surprises restaurant owners when I visit their establishments.


Ok well I better go now..

/tata

Thursday / Friday

Hi today is a thursday friday for us, we are getting a day off tomorrow. So we will see what do with our time. We will meet a friend of ours for dinner Friday night. I am thinking about what to do Friday morning. I am thinking of taking a trip to Jin-do perhaps take some photos and look around. It has been quite some time since we have been there.

We have a dinner tonight with the staff I was planning to head out early but well that will not happen.

Oh well....

/tata

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Can you smile?

I read my little sisters blog and well...it got me thinking about smiles. Our weekend plans were quite exciting by our standards, go to muju and relax in the valleys there while reading our books.
Sounds good right? Well life does not turn out the way you would like. I think that even though that is the case we should smile anyway.

This is what happened: We woke up and started to get ready for a nice little drive to muju. I started the engine to our Enterprise (I really think George will love this car). Anyway as we are heading out I realize that it is time for and oil change. So we head over to my friends place, and we get the oil changed. I saw another friend of mine, Mr Ryu, he was also getting an oil change but needed some extra work done.

Well Yogita and I went for lunch nearby and decided to just eat and then go back and get the car. WEEEELLLLL when we got back we found that the oil gaskets had gone bad (I knew about this already and have been keeping an eye on it). So we are like....well ok but how long will it take? Look people if someone mentions gaskets realize that it is a time consuming task.

You basically have to take apart the engine to reach the gaskets. In our case we had to clean parts of the engine as well. My friend Hwa-Nil is awesome, he work over 10 hours on my ride. I and another friend on mine cleaned parts of the engine housing. He was much better than I, but I learned alot. I remember in India Dad would say "They had to clean so and so part with gasoline" Well gasoline is a very very good cleaner! I used a diesel / gasoline mix to clean parts of the engine. I even got to clean the throttle body which let me tell you is not easy! The enterprise has a dual throttle body.

Well how does this come down to smiles?


Our day was ruined, in the fact that we did not go where we wanted. We stayed at my friends car garage all day on Saturday. BUT we smiled, all day. Why? Cause we had each other, and we were helping to keep the USS Enterprise road worthy.

The bottom line is this...we were together. At one point Yogita felt bad cause the guys there were telling her to go inside and enjoy the air conditioner. I told her to put her foot down and tell em that she WANTED TO BE THERE. Well it worked. We were there all day fixing the car.

We did not see the wonderful valleys of Muju, BUT we did spend time together with friends.
So We did SMilE!!!!


Thanks abu

/tata

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The wonderful world of rice cooker!!!!







Amazing! amazing! just absolutely amazing...

rice cookers are very popular in Korea what with rice being the staple food and all....

anyways, i am totally blown away by the fact that there are so many things you can prepare in a rice cooker besides rice...for example the other day i made a full breakfast of french toast eggs and bacon in the rice cooker...last week for dinner i made chicken and vegetable stew and the other night i make pork and vegetable stir fry in the rice cooker....

Also in the past i have even cooked lentil soup and pulao( Indian style rice based dish which often also includes ingredients like vegetables and/ or meat) in the rice cooker..

i did a search on the web and sure enough there are gazillion recipes you can cook using the rice cooker including some traditional recipes like Jambalaya and Gumbo...i love it because its a no sweat easy way to cook delicious food.

Friday, July 23, 2010

A deluge!!!

We are getting heavy heavy rain. This year once again I was totally soaked in about 5 seconds running to my car. Ugh. Now it is raining heavily on and off. I wonder if this will continue until tomorrow.

It reminds me of monsoon rains in India, so heavy and would come down not in burst like here but for 30 minutes straight.

So if this weather system stays with us until tomorrow, I think I will take Yogita to a video room and watch some movies. Maybe stop by subway before watching the movie.

I think my listening students will not come today. Well perhaps one or two will.

Well enjoy your weekends people.

/tata

Thursday, July 22, 2010

These are a few of my favorite things.....







playing in the water
as the day keeps getting hotter
lying at the beach
with no classes to teach
these are a few of my favorite things.

a cup of cold coffee
or a cup of ice tea
a slice of watermelon
or beer with a lemon
these are a few of my favorite things.

when it is hot
when it is muggy
when i am feeling a little edgy
i simply remember my favorite things
and then i don't feel so HOT!!!!!



Action packed season!

We might be going away on Saturday with some friends. We will go to a valley near Muju. Muju is a mountain, where ski resorts are located. It is very popular in the winter, but in the summer it is also a nice place to visit. There are numerous valleys in and around Muju, and from what I have seen and heard...they are very beautiful. Actually we have not had a chance to visit any of the valleys, so this Saturday might be our first time to see it.

I will take my laptop, with controllers (MAME32 kicks butt!). Of course I will bring books, we are nothing with our books.

So this Saturday might be action packed, if not then I will make sure we get out of the house during the hottest part of the day. Perhaps we can go to movie room, or even a pc room for a while. Gotta love it there, people battling others in cyberspace the sounds of Internet battle raging through the air.

Ok I gotta go...

/tata

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The heat is KILLING me!





well not really....i am being overly dramatic...but honestly it is very very very hot and muggy here....yesterday was actually the hottest day here in Korea...most Koreans eat either dog meat(boshin tang) or chicken soup(samgyetang) on the hottest day...

The chicken soup is very mild with ginseng and other herbs so the broth is really delicious..it is usually a whole chicken (small size) stuffed with herbs, garlic, chestnut and rice..the chicken is then boiled in a stew pot until the meat is falling of the bones..it is garnished with green onions and served usually with radish kimchi

yesterday, we had some chicken soup it was delicious...

on the bright side, i LOVE watermelon...and i had a ball having it yesterday and today...CHILLED WATERMELON...YUMMY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Japan and Korea...very sad countries...

There is a report in the newspaper here on the suicide rate in Japan. Across the east sea for every 100,000 Japanese, 35 commit suicide yearly. I was going over those figures in my head, and that would mean that here in Gunsan with a population of about 270,000 people, roughly 80 people would roughly be the average. Now hold it right there! Korea's suicide rate is HIGHER than Japan. So now I need to look at my figures again. If you look over at this website http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_OECD_countries_by_suicide_rate you will see that Japan is at the top of the list. However, recently Korea topped that figure reported there. That would mean perhaps 80-85 people committing suicide every year. Not a small number in this small city.

Koreans seem to be happy at first glance, almost carefree. Under the surface there is more than what meets the eye. Students are under enormous pressure to do well on their exams. Here in Korea it is impossible for you to fail, or rather flunk a grade. However, the points, or your test scores are what matters.

In one class suicide was being discussed, the students were all middle school students. Some of them thought to be able to carry out the act of taking your own life was heroic. WHAT? If I do poorly in an exam, or lose large amounts of money (stock market, private business), it is heroic to throw your life away. Strange, very strange, but that is how it is.

/tata

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Vacation....

So I need to choose vacation days. The only problem is that none of the teachers have taken a vacation yet. So that means we could end up in a very bad situation. The 2 other teachers are nearing the end of their contracts...so this means that well...we could end up with a real problem.

Vacation days......um I think I will just wait like I usually do. Things will get sorted in time. I have been dreaming of Philadelphia recently I want a hoagie, a cheese steak, and much more. I want to visit the mall, and go to places that I used to visit when I was there. 10 years...seems like forever.

I need to do some research though, cause we will need a hotel, transportation, and good intel on where to eat. It has been to long for me, so I am afraid I might get lost. BUT, renting a car would be awesome! We could go to the beach, I have not been to wildwood in....well...I can't recall (I need Mike's chronological memory for that!).

Yogita suggested going to Cheju Island, but at this time of year....getting a plane ticket is next to impossible. Also hotels are pretty much booked. Oh well like I said, I will have to wait it out, and see what happens.

/tata


Monday, July 12, 2010

The Weekend!!!!

This weekend was pretty laid back. It was actually cool weather wise...we got some rain on Saturday and a little today....we went out to get some sandwiches and ice-cream in the evening and ended our weekend with a madea movie...perfect ending to a nice and relaxing weekend.

By-the-way, Jemal and I are in love with the Madea movies....they are fun..actually we like all of Tyler Perry's work...the movies, the sit com....Mr. Brown is hilarious...Jemal can mimic Mr. Brown pretty well....if you like some light hearted comedy trust me that's the show for you....really funny...we love it!!!!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Adventure is out there!!!!!!!

I was watching the movie "UP" the other day. I like the movie...very well done...very sweet and romantic....

it got me thinking, what is Adventure? The dictionary describes it as:
  1. To venture upon; undertake or try.
  2. To expose to danger or risk; hazard.

  1. To take a risk; dare.
  2. To proceed despite risks.

I thought it was very interesting because usually when we think about Adventure we think about all the big things: bungee jumping, skydiving, climbing Mt. Everest, going to the moon...

but we usually overlook the small things.....Everyday we do something that in its own way is a risk that we are undertaking despite the danger, something new that we are ready to try: making a new friend, telling someone how you feel about something, getting married, having kids, doing your job to the best of your ability, enjoying the music and singing along off-tune loudly, getting up and dancing with everyone watching you..

it is the small things that we remember the most....don't overlook these small things because you are brooding about the big stuff.....

remember Adventure is out there!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, July 09, 2010

when u love someone......

i have been thinking about this wonderful man i am married to...and i am not just saying it..... he is AWESOME....i don't know what i would do without him...he is the sweetest person in the world and what i love about him is that he gives it to me straight........ no flowery words....no diplomacy...it's like a reality check that i soooooooo need.....i am not contradicting the fact that its frustrating but i am happy i have someone who care enough for me to help me and let me know how it is....there is no fakeness..its all real...and let me tell you this from personal experience reality may not be sweet but its like a bitter medicine that we all need...and i am happy that my DOCTOR is in town...love you babe!!!!!

Korean woman in their 40's

Just little thing that I have noticed here in the good ole ROK. Women, hairstyles, and age.
It seems that depending on your age there is a general hairstyle that you should have. A young woman (early 20's to late 20's), usually has very long hair. Or at least long hair in some sort of style. These days many people think Yogita is unmarried and much younger than she is. Of course my baby is beautiful, but here people are shocked to learn that she is married and has 2 kids.

The reason? She wears her hair long, and it naturally curls, and forms waves. Yes I like my wife's hair a lot! However, once women starting getting closer to middle age, they will usually cut their hair short. This type of perm is so prevalent, that I can guess a womans age (in my mind of course!) Short hair, with curls. Thats basically it! I keep looking for some soft of break in this trend....and well I have not seen one yet. I know I know I going over board with this, but come on?

A friend of mine is approaching 40, as is his wife. He told me that he loves his wife to have long hair. She however doesn't want to grow it long, and seems to fall in with the trend.

/tata

Thursday, July 08, 2010

All work and no play.....

Education in South Korea is viewed crucial for success and competition is very heated and fierce. I have a middle school student who is forever preparing for one test or another..i am not joking this kid is forever memorizing words, preparing for an exam or presentation or some such...Her hard work paid off and now she is studying in New Zeland for a month on a partial scholarship.

But the funny thing is most of these kids and over worked...some of my students don't get back home until well after midnight.....they go to one academy after another as soon as they finish school...these kids have no time to relax or have a social group or play or do anything that kids basically do...sometimes i woder if thats the reason why most of them have little or no imagination...who has the time to go daydreaming when there is a pile of books to deal with....

Monday, July 05, 2010

The internet is all!

This is something that I have been thinking on and off about for some time. How many letters have you actually posted, I mean handwritten. You put a postage stamp on it, and drop it in the mail box. The last time I ever did that was back in Philadelphia,....10 years ago! Now I use emails. Heck even emails are starting to become a cumbersome mode of communication. MMS, texting, online messenger programs that even allow video conferencing. Oh and you can do this from your smart phone or cell phone. It's nuts I tell you!

Magazines, newspapers, comic books.....nuff said that is so yesterday! I download old comic books online in scanned form. Reading a comic book on an Ipad will kick butt! Newspapers, I mean really...online news is faster, or rather I should say updates much faster. Newspapers are often late in getting news out. Heck the reporter can just upload their story to the net. Magazines....pdf people....pdf.

So the Internet is all!


/tata

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Some recent happenings....

Sigh, what is Gunsan coming to? Monday night a middle school student fell to his death after hanging out side of an apartment 7 stories up. He was actually doing pull ups while his friend filmed him on a mobile phone. The boy soon tired, and at that moment (according to my students), the boy who was filming, received a call. He could not hear his friend asking him to help him up, and well....he fell.

Another incident: A elementary aged girl was gang raped by a group of middle school boys. My goodness.

Hearing about the above incidents reminds of certain people in Korea who will deny, no strongly deny that such acts happen in here. I had one woman tell me (not 3 months ago), that there are no homosexuals in Korea. Well times have changed because the other students quickly spoke up, much to the womans embarrassment. She even had the nerve to say this: "Well not with me, not people around me, not in my neighborhood". A big fat LOL to her cause her hood is a major one in Gunsan perhaps the biggest.

When I first came to Korea I was so naive. I believed everything people told me. From those comments I thought Korea must be a utopia. I really should have known better.

Koreans are known for hospitality, and being warm hearted. However, there is an area where people do not want the "dirty laundry" to be known to foreigners. I have heard that is common in cultures that have been largely closed to other cultures. In fact Korea's nickname was "Hermit Kingdom".

Today those that want to pull the wool over peoples eyes are finding it harder and harder to do so. The younger generations don't seem to care as much, and seem more open and free about expressing their opinions. Even if they are not popular or "accepted" norms.

Anyways just another rant from yours truly!

/tata

Thursday, June 17, 2010

ARRGGHHH KOREEEAAAA..........

Uh so like...everyone so excited today....there is a big game...Korea will take on one of the strongest teams in the world....and well...they got pawned. I want to cry. Personally I love the worldcup season. There is a bit of history as to why I love this season.

When I first came here, I saw a count down to the 2002 worldcup I never thought that I would be here when Korea hosted the world cup. I remember when I would ride the subway they would have these huge countdown posters. As I stayed here longer, and sort fell in love with the place, I felt a foreboding that I would not be here to see the event.

As I stayed longer I saw the number count down. I remember we moved to Ulsan, and when we were there I lost contact. It was not until the year its self. We were back in Gunsan up to our necks in work and a student told....the world cup is next week. I just smiled to myself.

I love were I am at. I love what I do. I love the place that I have in this place. The friends that I have made. The different perspective that I have. I can't go back to what I was before. I just can't. When I came back from England....I remember in the room on the third floor. I looked at the ceiling and I thought....wow....everything is the same as when I left. People, places, the general attitude. Now this is not a bad thing...it is perfectly normal. However, for me I felt like I did not belong. I needed to go back overseas to find what I wanted to do. I have found it. I was always fascinated with India....well my wife is Indian. I have been to India, and lived there....awesome experience which will be repeated over and over again. It is a different life as an expat, but it is FULL of adventure, discovering new things. There is only so much you can learn from a book, I have learned to live the adventure!

/tata

Sunday, June 13, 2010

World news...

It is quite weird when I compare my news watching habits that I have now to that of about 10 years ago. At that time, local news, or national captured my attention. Now, I am looking at news from all over the world, with a keen interest, in Asia. Here I am now it is 7am on a Sunday morning. Yogita is knocked out, and I am doing my usual web surfing for current events. Of course the huge oil spill is a major issue, but it reminds of Korea's oil not 2 years ago. It was MUCH MUCH smaller! I think many back home likely have heard little about it. It raised so many issues here. I even went to help with the clean up. I got sick afterwards, and I think I should have driven my own car, because sitting on that bus all cooped up with no windows open....it make this chicken quite green! I had a fever the next day, and had to miss the sunday meeting. Oh and not to mention the aches and pains.

The 10 year mark for my Korean saga, is August 26th. I know Mike was really into dates, back in the day. He would remember the exact date that certain things happened. I wished I had kept a blog at that time. Now our memories of those early years are all jumbled up, and we often argue on location, and time. Or who said what, where did we eat that night in 2002. This year I have not been as regular updating this blog as I was last year. I want to change that.

Ok back to web surfing, and time for class prep! Sundays is when I put it all together for my classes, during the week I make small modifications to my weekly curriculum.

Ugh I feel like a klingon, dry throat cause I sleep in front of the fan all night. Oh I think I will check on my pacific mini series torrent!

/tata

Saturday, June 12, 2010

linux.....

ROCKS!!! I got a t43 IBM think pad as my portable solution. It kicks anus. I love it. I usually run vista, or xp. BUT I have been converted. I will download Eve online and see how well it runs. I will also see about upgrading the ram further. Wow. This CPU is not a dual core, but running on a centrino based motherboard (very good power regulation), I get very nice results using linux. Linux is very very light on system resources. Vista is a HUGE hog! Xp can get really heavy. Linux I think once I get over the rather steep learning curve I will have much more control, meaning that this system, will always run at optimum speeds.

Movie stuff...we strongly recommend that you all see Dragon....personally I was not all that impressed by the teasers. BUT...it blew my socks off in 3D!!!

Watch this in 3D if you can....it actually brings the movie right to you!!

Ok a little later we are going to dig into our whoppers, a rare treat for us!

/Tata

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Nutty day...

I go to a kindergarten only 2 days a week. I feel that they want more and more out of me..but..I am not there a full week. Working at kindergartens can be a challenge. I do not think the little kids are the major source of headache. It is the teachers, and the parents. Or perhaps the owners. In Korea Kindergartens are privately owned. That means that is a business, so foreigners can boost income by making parents feel that they should pay higher, or additional fees, for "English classes".

It is totally nuts, totally. Kids are kids. I know that I am basically just a center piece in such a setup. It rankles me because I have to travel some ways to get out there. UGH. Kindy in Korea is very very frustrating. In Alaska when I was substituting for kindergarten classes there, it was so...awesome....no...normal. Kids were expected to be kids. In Korea.....the amount of studying that goes on is insane!!

So it does not seem so far fetched that Korea has the highest suicide rate in the world! 40 people commit suicides every day! However, while living here you will notice that heavy drinking in the norm for adults. Drinking private, or in local restaurants, your will people drinking quite a lot of soju, or beer. Google soju, and you will find that is as sake is to Japan, as soju is to Korea.

well...rant off/

Tata!!!

Friday, June 04, 2010

End of a 4 day week...

Well the elections are over. Actually it is a relief. The noise, the blaring music.....argghhh. It really got to me. In addition, the canidates would stand on corners and bow to passing traffic. This is usual for me. BUT this year people were in the back of pick up trucks, waving to the drivers behind them. So I am in my car, and looking at the candidate (and his wife) waving to me. Sounds like nothing right? Well the light changes, the pickup truck lurches forward, the future of Gunsan is about to be rolled over by my car. Now, if you know about Korean liability laws, and traffic regulations you would be as scared as I was. If the mayoral candidate fell off the truck, and was struck by my car....I would be paying him a butt load of cash, or making new friends behind bars. They had no kind of safety harness, no real support bar. Even if they had, they wouldn't have been using it. They waved with both hands, while bowing at the same time. They really ought to learn a lesson from the dancing girls who advertise some store opening, or a new club in town. Those girls dance and dance, and never seem close to falling off the trucks they are on. Wow.

Anyways this week is over, I think I will go to Pusan next weekend. I am getting itchy feet again. I want to enjoy the sand, ocean, and this time unlike Seok-cho more seafood!

/tata

Monday, May 31, 2010

Indian Economy WOW

India really is an amazing place. Their economic growth rate will be very high this year. I think 8 percent or higher. India is really is place where you can see the haves and the have nots. Most people who travel to India see the poor side. To bad for them. They then go back home and then give a very inaccurate picture of India. In truth, India is HUGE. You can enter an area that looks like back home in suburban America. Then on the hand you can enter and area that is extremely poverty stricken.

Just my thoughts.....today was a run of mill day I guess. Tomorrow, will be like a Friday because Wednesday is election day...or is it voting day. Well we will get a day off...so that is cool. I think we will just take it easy at home.

/tata

Heat wave India!!!

I just read on the news and I have heard from my peeps that yes India is indeed hot! In fact the heat wave is a bit unusual this year. Seems really strange when you think that in Korea we have had alot of abnormally cool weather.

For those of you who have not experienced the heat of India....let me tell you this...it is no joke! I mean I remember during nap time....we would sweat if bodies came into contact with one another. It was like breathing hot gravy. It is a wonder but my computer, my desknote performed normally. It has a AMD cpu which runs very hot.

Indian heat is very different from what I am used to. India and other countries along that latitude have a dry heat. Well....mostly dry. It means you dehydrate very very very fast, with out sweating streams of sweat.

Ok time to get ready for another 4 day week. Lets hope no war breaks out on the Korean peninsula because....I am not in the mode to uproot and head back to the states.

Actually on that topic many feel that North Korea can not make it this far South of Seoul. I would feel very uneasy if I were living in Seoul. It is ONLY 57km from the DMZ. Perhaps 40 miles or so. That means that hundreds...perhaps thousands of artillery units have their guns on Seoul. With the population density of the Seoul, which is greater than New York....you can imagine the the destruction. Ok time to go sleepy sleep.....bye!


/tata

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Wednesday / Thursday

Yeah...a 4 day week...I love em! However, I think next year we will not have to worry about holidays falling on a weekend and totally losing out on free time! Next year the Korean government has been rumored to change the holiday system, similar to that of America, where holidays on weekends, doesnt mean you lose a holiday. You get a 3 day weekend. If the rumor is true then it would be awesome. Personally I think it would be good for business, because most people are going head out and spent money on those days. Ok that would be cool.

However, here is a bit of news that would be very good for us. That is the new F-2-7 visa. Using a special point system, a foriegner on an E class visa can obtain residency status. I like the way money isn't a major point. With this new visa people do not have to worry about sticking to one field, they can branch out. Now it is not an easy visa to get, actually for me, I think it is easier due to living here for 10 years. Age is in my favor (for the next 2 years), If I can improve my Korean that will be a big help to. Some other factors can help as well. I will be looking into it. Yogita would have an easier time than I. Well we will have to see.

On health news we are hoping to get back to walking this evening. I have a pedometer, neat little thing.

/tata

Monday, May 17, 2010

Wow....long time..no post!

Well right now we are getting ready to enjoy a 4 day week. A real treat this year, cause holidays are far and few between. So that means we want to relish what little we do get. I am still going to Jang-hang teaching at a kindergarten there. I do not know if i mentioned that last post. I want to try another short run of post about Korean food. This time though I want it to focus on popular summer foods. The weather patterns in Korea this year are very different from previous years. Gunsan for example basically has 2 major seasons. Even Gunsan residents do not deny this....I can think of only 2 people who would disagree LOL. Anyways, we actually got quite a bit of snow in March, and even had snow in April. Only now is it starting to warm up. Even so it still gets late winter chilly at night sometimes...strange.

We saw Iron Man 2.....it was.....ok. Actually, I would say that it on par with the first movie so it was actually quite good. I can see how they are laying the groundwork for more future Marvel movies: Avangers assemble!

Yogita and I have been up to necks in recent days. So busy running around during the week that weekends are just spent at home. Last weekend was a little different. We went to a nice long trip through our province, and cholla-nam province which is to the south of us. I actually remembered to bring the camera! I took some nice shots. It reminds of another time, well perhaps the last time we took such a trip and George was with us...and..I forgot the camera.

Sheesh. Forgetfulness sucks. I think June will be a bit busy for us as well, because a friend, and co-worker is going to the US of A. She is excited about it. We have gone on trips together before, and George remembers those outings too.

It looks like rain today. I heard that in India it is very hot, seems like weather patterns have not drastically effected more southern regions?

Ok I am almost ready in getting ready for the first half of this week...I will go check out facebook then finish up my prep.

/tata

Friday, April 16, 2010

Weird Week at an end!

Yeah...lets make it a WW. First we got snow on Wednesday, and had un-seasonally cold weather almost all of the this week. Finally it is at an end..work wise. In Jang-Hang I go another class and more students are pouring in. I really have a feeling that the principle / owner will try to get me to stay there for longer hours if this trend picks up. Which I am NOT cool about.

I have itchy feet nowadays. Perhaps this weekend we will go somewhere. No not perhaps, we will. I have the map all ready to go. Two weekends in a row we went to Gwang-ju...oh darn I will complete this later....I gotta eat dinner!

/tata

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Amazing Saturday!!!!

Yesterday was very beautiful...sunny, crisp and clear....

We had a nice relaxing morning and then made our way to Gwangju....we were there last weekend and had fun so we decided to go there again but this time just for a day trip....

after we arrived in Gwangju we found free parking in the Shinsegae department store...actually in Gwangju the Shinsagae department store, E-Mart and the CGV I Max are in 3 separate buildings right next to each other but are connected to each other...it's really cool we could walk from one building to the other...

we ate at the reststop on the highway so we were not hungry. We decided to watch a movie. Yesterday was the first day the movie 'The Clash of the Titans' was showing...it was nice...we also rode this 3D ride...it was Awesome...we chose the star trek senerio..it was like playing EVE in a way...

while we were waiting for the movie to start we went to the coffee shop on the same floor as the movie theatre and read our books...i enjoyed it!!!!!

We headed back to Gunsan around 7 p.m It was a very enjoyable and relaxing day....we really needed it...now we are ready for another insanely busy week...oh and we finally got some Salsa from E-Mart..YEAH!!!!!!!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Long time no blog!

We have been very busy lately. We had some fun on the weekend. We went to Gwang-ju and had a good look around. Gwang-ju is about 90 km south of Gunsan. We loved it! We got to walk around, and enjoy the sights with out being too far from Gunsan. The weather is slowly improving...or becoming more spring like. I think the earthquake in Chile which shifted the Earths axis might have major effects on our weather patterns. What may seem like only a few mm's makes a HUGE deal in the placement of this planet from the sun. Well the sign of our times. I will be posting pictures soon...that time has come...


/tata

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Little People

You know teaching kids can be the most challenging thing. You need loads of patience, you have to create a lesson plan that basically changes every 5-7 minutes (on the same topic only with different approaches). I think many teachers have issues with the fact the little people really want attention and will try to get that attention in a positive or negative way.

I met a new batch of little people. Some of them are same age as George so that was nice.

Now I am tired....2 classes to go....2 more.

/tata

Monday, March 15, 2010

Respect.....

You know the I meet people, or rather the more people I meet, I have found...many just do not have a clue!!

They can make witty comments, and sound pretty cool in general. Then they mistakes that just....well...makes them look very foolish. The other night we had a dinner and we met other teachers (some where new). Basically, what some of them were bragging about....I just hope they do not vocalize that nonsense where Korean co-workers can hear.

Many English teachers who come here to work must realize that the Korean staff working alongside them, can understand at least the context of what they are talking about. I am now seeing first hand how many of these teachers get no respect!

I will be vague, as I will not point fingers at people. I will say this bragging in East Asia doesn't make one look cool! Especially about some of things I have heard people brag about.

/tata

Friday, March 05, 2010

Friday!!!!

Rain....yep...rain rain and more rain...this weekend that is what we have in store for us. We had nice warm stretch of weather a little while back...loved that. There is a farewell party for a teacher tomorrow. The original plan was that we would have a nice cook out on the roof of an apartment where 2 of our teachers are staying. Would have been very nice...expect of course for the ...RAIN.

I am here in a PC room, which is located in the same building as our institute. It is very nice, the non smoking section is actually smoke free! The ventilation is very efficient . The staff is very friendly. I am downloading a 2.3gig file....should take less than an hour. Boy how times have changed. In the past a file that big was unheard of. Today, many pc games take up that much hhd space and more.

I like it here, I might come here every tuseday and friday.

Ok now on to face book....Omorro here I come!

/tata

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Hmmm...

We just got news that a sister of a former teacher (who is our friend), moved to Korea after getting married. Since I heard of this I brought me back to 2000 when we first arrived here in South Korea. I was trying to think of any similarities from back then and now. One is that the exchange rate is almost the same....back then it was 1110won/1$. Now it around 1160-70 won.

That year I remember Seoul getting a heavy snowfall but nothing compared to the levels this year.
Back then we were starting our adventure together, now...well I feel that it is still continuing.
I will have to think on it more...I had more idea's earlier. My boss gave me her cell phone...she and Yogita are tired of my waiting for the iphone to come down in price. So she gave me her new phone. I am very happy for it because well, I can still keep waiting for the iphone and keep everyone happy.

Omorro I am very very glad your CD is completed. I will email you my questions, and post on your facebook page.

Ok I gotta go...


/tata

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Busy month!

Well finally this month is over. What a relief. Now comes March. Which promises to be an even more busy month. Today we got our new schedules. It is hard to explain how things work when people look at my schedule. They feel that I am getting special treatment. What they do not understand is exactly what I do. I sometimes go to nearby cities, companies, kindergartens, and public schools. These are of course legal worked out through immigration, the interested parties, and of course my boss. However, these are really public knowledge. I think I will meet and explain how things work. It might help people understand things better.

It looks like March will be EXTREMELY busy for us. My boss is actually taking my advice! As result well...lets just say we are busier than ever.

This little holiday I am not sure what I want to do really. Perhaps day trips around the country. Visit my friend (he is a car mechanic) and talk cars with him. Actually Yogita is a quite a car person now. We could go this resturant that nearby that we always look at but never go to. Might be fun.....

I really miss lucknow these days..the people the weather.....mom's cooking. MAN I miss those super hot peppers we would eat. You know what that means...India trip coming soon.

Oh.....uh some geeky news now....I have this really small usb drive...REALLY small!! And it is 8GIGS. It is ....about 3/4 of an inch long.....8 gigs!!! Back in 1999/2000 8gigs was like....premium on a laptop. I remember our first pc......16gigs of HDD, with a tiny 128megs of RAM. DAMMMUMM. Now I am sitting on 4gigs of ram, and a total of 1.3 TERABYTES. yeah....i aint talkin' about gigabytes.....the new language will be tera people. TERA!!!!


Ok i gotta go.....


/Tata!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Car accident pics...






So um yeah I have wanted to post this for the longest time. We were heading downhill with a layer of ice under the snow. I will never admit this to anyone here in Gunsan, but...it really was my fault.
You see there is one route home that is very very safe, as in there are no hills. The route I took has a number of hills. I even had difficulty climbing one of the hills, tires spinning out and all. Sheesh I should have take it has a warning of things to come.

Well as I was heading down hill I noticed another car approaching the intersection. I also noticed that it was also sliding toward the intersection. I had 2 choices...hit that car are hit the pole. I do not care what Andrew says but....this was a 10kph collision (its all love Andrew!!). From the pictures you might disagree with my assessment. BUUUT I think you should agree with me...seeing as I am the captain of the Enterprise and all....

Repairs where about 800 USD. Ouch.


/tata

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

What a weekend!

I think now I can ride dads scooter! We did allot this weekend. We tried to use western union to pay for our eve account...did not work.

So we did game as much as we would have liked. But that is all good. We took a number of short trips. I was a little worried about my power steering fluid reservoir. You see the cap was put on at at an angle, twisted on way to tightly. I tried again and again to twist the damm thing off. My power steering column has a small leak, or perhaps it is the heavy strain placed on it during the heavy snows. The level was dropping.... So I go to a mechanic, and....he does it the smart way....he uses his body weight to untwist the cap. Babo me.

We had steak over the weekend....so nice and tender.

I think the highlight of our weekend was me learning to drive a scooter. It was awesome the freedom, and the feeling of cutting into the wind. At first I was a bit wobbly, but under a friend of ours instruction.....I quickly got the hand of it with out falling off!

I am stoked to try it again!

/tata

Friday, February 05, 2010

4 day holiday coming soon!

So we got the news yesterday, the 12 next week we will have the Friday off. So now comes the question...what to do with that extra day? Personally, I would like to rest. Nearly every week since the end of summer have been very busy. We will now make plans, we are thinking of taking short trips.

We have been watching many cgi movies lately, and well....because of one in particular I really want to have a dog again! The name of the movie is "UP". There is this cute adorable dog.....

Years ago we did have a dog. I wonder if George can still remember that beagle that followed us home. In Korea owning a dog is not impossible but it is not easy. Some people will have the dogs operated on so that they can not bark. That is very cruel in my opinion.

Well time to get ready for a TEPS listening class. There are so many of these new English tests coming out all the time...


/tata

Monday, February 01, 2010

Monday.....

Yeah it is a Monday again, but all is well. We are all well, we went to Muju this weekend. Muju is a ski resort, very popular during the winter, but also during the spring and summer. We drove up to Muju following another friends car. My goodness he drove like he was on crack! Of course I was able to stay on his tail. Actually I needed to because we did not have a navagation system. It is getting looked at right now.

Well we finally made it BUT Yogita got carsick from all the driving. Poor thing vomited when we arrived. Then we couldn't stay there....we had to turn around and go home. In fact.....my friend is sitting right next to me. I wonder if he knows I am writing about it. Yesterday we just stayed in. It was fun.

We really need more time alone though. There is a nice holiday coming. I think after after the 10th or so. Perhaps during that time we will have a good time....but it is only 3 days this year. I can't wait until this chu-sok. We will get 5 days which can easily mean 7!

Well time to finish my class prep!

/tata

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Computer stuff.....

Ok ok so I want to talk about computers....

Melah did you change your ....uh...I will ask you on facebook. Um...no...aggrrhhh....(blog? facebook? blog? facebook? blog?....BLOG!)

Ok Melah did you change your cpu, and motherboard? I got a really got chance to upgrade to a quad core (the shop owner wanted to buy my old cpu reducing the cost of the quad core cpu by about 80 bucks!) BUT....I blew it. I procrastinated until my schedule changed, making it impossible to make the deal during the week. UGH.

I want to hold off on upgrades for now...I want to buy last years top graphics cards, ATI cards look pretty nice. One guy over here is selling a ATI graphic card for like 370,000 won. It has like 1 gig of ddr3 memory on it....NICE! The gpu is quite fast too. I have had my 22 inch monitor for about 1.5 years...and I have got to say this....large monitors rock! 17's just dont cut it!

So upgrades I want to get this year = upgrade my PSU, get a quad core, or better duo core, and get a better graphics card. I want to do all of this on the same motherboard.

Some things I would love to have but can not justify the expense...water cooling! Oh my! Our apartment becomes so humid and stuffy that the only way I can keep the pc temps within optimal range is to place a fan right next to it with the side panel off. This helps alot. But with water cooling....I would not have to do that. Also I heard water cooling setups can run very quietly as well. (180,000 won for the setup).

Basically I would need to up about 400,000 into my pc, a bit much for right now. I wish I was stateside where the second hand market is HUGE! I could cut that price tag down to about 200,000 won.

Ok well melah please let me know about your system.

OH I got a terabyte hard drive. AWESOME. But it is 30% full now,and will be about 45% full once I empty my desknote drive on it. And on another note my desknote's graphic card is almost on the fritz! It can not run grapic intensive programs for more than 10minutes.....service center time!!!! (I hope the motherboard is not totally gone!).

Rainy days.....

Today is very rainy, but I am feeling very happy about it. Just a few weeks ago we had snowfall after snowfall. Putting snow chains on and taking them off, getting into a accident....fortunately not another car. It was an expensive fall/winter for us. Transmission died...arrggghhhh.

So when I see rain I feel happy now....I love rain. Rain rain rain, please come another day instead of snow! I mean come on, they say global warming yadda yadda, but we get more and more snow, and it is colder this year.

I personally no to buy into the carbon emission bull. I think that this is due to activity on the surface of the sun. There have been warm periods just like we are experiencing now, in the recent past...like 200 years ago. Global warming is keeping hundreds of thousands in jobs, and politicians in office. Carbon emissions are more likely to give us lung cancer, or some other disease.

Oh well....

/tata

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Warm....

Today was so warm that we really wanted to take a walk. I had some minor repairs done on the car...very cheap and fast....yet it will help save fuel. A fuel damper was loose, which allowed fuel to constantly leak. More in the form of fumes. We would always get a smell of gasoline if I filled the car up. The smell would go away after 20 minutes so. Basically it was a very very small leak in the fuel system that caused us to waste fuel over days! Now I will notice better fuel economy now.

My sore throat is getting more painful...reminds me of 2006. This week to is flying by...already we are at the middle of the week.

Haiti has had such a horrible time with that earthquake. 200,000 are feared dead! It makes you wonder how easily it is to have your life totally turned upside down on you in an instant.
This system of things can not and will not last.

Ok I will get ready for tomorrows early morning class....


/tata

Monday, January 18, 2010

31/32

Well finally Omorro and I are 31 (American), 32 Korean. I have a sore throat...really painful but I can still teach ^^. Yogita and I were so tired today....Mondays.

Finally the snow seems to have past us by. You know (Mom might be surprised). I LOVE SUPER SPICE FOOD!!!! I am eating these chilli peppers....and boy oh boy they are a kick and a half. I love the burning sensation. These are slightly pickled.....yummy!

Oh gotta finish more of this....


/tata

Friday, January 15, 2010

Friday finally it is here!

Finally today it is Friday. This was insane weather wise. It snowed 3 days this week. I had to pay for the bumper work. Yogita and I both have a sore throat. I am ok during the day, but in the morning....OUCH. So I would like to rest at home tomorrow, and take it easy on Sunday. I don't want to do anything extra. Just come back home and rest. Take it easy.

I will get ready for Monday today.....tired of coming down on the weekend to finish up preparations. Yogita has been downloading movies all week so we will watch them and chill.

Oh I will be 32 in Korea and 31 in America next week.


WHoo hoo.....uh....ummmm......yeah.


/tata

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Weekend plans!!!




I have 2 plans that i want to discuss with Jemal and see how he feels....like Jemal mentioned some teachers want to go to the ski resort in MuJu.....we have never been to the resort and we do want to go tubing and stuff so we might go with them...my other plan is to go on a road trip around Gunsan, stop by the Asian grocery store in Iksan on our way back and do some shopping...ofcourse I want to have some coffee and a blueberry bagel with cream cheese.....YUMMY!!!!!!! we will have to see about that...

We will be sending a package to India next week...Abu we hope you feel better...

here are a few pictures of Muju ski Resort

oops!!! time to go and teach

First post of the year!

This is a new year....but it feels the same. I am older but I am the same. Time flies faster now than it did last year.

Ok it is not the same. I have a mission for this year. I will build a powerful pc this year. The specs i am so clear on what I will get. But I really want to use multiple displays, and perhaps multiple graphic cards, well actually 2.

We have been very busy. The water pipe froze in our apartment, so we could not wash clothes last week. Fortunately over the weekend the temperature rose, and we washed clothes like crazy.

This weekend is Yogita's weekend. I have told her that she can do what ever she wants. Some people want to go to Muju which is a winter resort town. So perhaps Yogita will want to go there.

But it is up to her. I know she wants a bag, or perhaps some ear rings.

Eric is looking over my shoulder....hacker.

Ok I gotta go!

/tata