Sunday, November 29, 2015

Here we are again!

it's almost December..... almost the end of this year.....almost time to say goodbye to another year....

Well actually I am updating this post. We are in December now and it looks like it will be a very cold winter.

Plans for the two 3 day weekends? Well I will take the family on a road trip to the southern area of South Korea.
The other 3 day holiday rest at home.

Well it is a Monday and...its not too bad of a day.


Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Gloomy days

Well it we getting closer to the end of year, and wow we have had 3 weeks of gloomy cloudy rainy weather. Of course this is needed as drought like conditions have been causing issues with farmers.

Yogita and I are undecided on what to do this winter. We will not go skiing it is just way to pricey. Resort towns basically make most of their yearly income 3 months out of the year. So you can expect prices to be crazy high. I hate mark ups.

A Russian fighter bomber wws shot down yesterday, or the day before. Then the helicopter that was sent in to rescue the shot down as well. All of this with American made weapons in Turkish hands. This odd proxy world war might actually break out into a real shooting war between major powers.

God's day will come. For that will be the ultimate solution for mankind.


Monday, November 16, 2015

Paris....129 killed...

We had a nice friday night, well it could have been better except that we ran into a drunk guy, and I had to kind of take care of him. No, not beat him or something stupid like that. I had to make sure he didn't hurt others by distracting him and pretending to understand his gibberish. In the end it worked no one got hurt and he fell asleep outside only to be taken home by the cops.

Then saturday was a pleasure, we watched a new tv mini series (new for us), and played eve, read our books.

It was in the evening that I decided to check my smart phones CNN app. Oh my goodness....Paris was a warzone!!! It made me think how we all think we are save in our respective locations in the world. This should be a wake up call. These people are dangerous! Here in Korea I hope they do not strike here. It would be horrific, I think more would perish. In Korea like when I was in America post 9/11 world events seemed that that "stuff" happening over there. Not so, we are living in a world were we are more connected than ever. Heck some of the terrorist even arrived via the waves of immigrants. They had the audacity to pose as helpless people fleeing dangerous lands. THEY were the danger the wolf in sheeps clothing.

Korea simply isn't ready for such acts. The drunk guy above, if he were in America would have been carted off to jail, and if he was violent with the cops...well we know what would have happened.
In Korea that person is basically taken care of.....taken well care of. Driven home, helped into their house.

Ugh death is an ugly reality in a world where we are mostly desensitized to it. IS shoots down an airplane full of holiday goers, goes on a rampage in paris. On a good note the "voice of IS" was blown to kingdom come. I wonder how he will justify his actions in front of God?


ps. Iraq it seems warned of an impending attack a day before it happened....

Friday, November 13, 2015

Your power supply unit and your desktop computer

Well once again computer woes have struck us. This time I installed a better graphics card in yogitas pc. Well...the next day Wednesday sparks started flying from her tower. I always keep our cases open so that I can see whats what in case.

Well in this case I thought the worse had happened, maybe the graphics card overheated (it was an older card), and it blew up. It can happen. But when I removed the graphics card it was not even very hot. In addition I smelled the card and there was no burnt smell. This is a tell tale sign if hardware burns out, there is a noticeable burned smell. There wasn't in this case. So I had a slim a hope. Perhaps the Power supply unit fried (the graphics card drew more power than the old card), and perhaps the damage was limited to the PSU.

Well just like what happened in India in late 2012 when power surges took out 3 power supply units in the 3 desktops I was running at the time, I got lucky. The cheap psu I bought actually did its job. It limited the damage of the overload to only the PSU. So instead of basically replacing everything motherboard, RAM, cpu, psu, AND the gpu, I only had to replace the PSU. I always keep back up hardware ready, and now Yogita's pc is back up and running.

So the moral of the story? Your PSU is the weakest link in your PC set up. Get a good quality PSU, cause if you are a gamer it will save your wallet some day!

That is what a PSU looks like!


ps on yeah its FRIDAY!!!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Need some rest

Well October was a wild ride. We went camping we went out with our students. My best friend and his family along with yogi and the boys had some nice times as well.

However it is time to slow down a bit. I want to put more time into setting up our website. In addition I want to host the website from our own server. Basically an old windows xp rig with some extra ram thrown in on our 1gbs internet connection.

In addition I want to focus on freelance editing work. Our paypal account is growing now. So it would be nice to grow that income stream into something that is sustainable. Oh well gotta go!!


Monday, November 02, 2015

Camping in the fall...

Well well well. We did it again. The screen tarp worked very well, and thanks to Gospel (Friend of mine, Gospel is his English nickname), we now have proper knots for the poles.

For the first time since we started camping we sort of fit right in in terms of our set ups. I will post pictures but some are also on facebook.
There is just one issue yogita and I had....electric blankets, or heating mats. They are cheap and sold everywhere...I should have picked up a set. We froze at night!

I was really surprised by how many people went camping nearly 70% of the camping spaces where filled. I hope this trend continues next year. This time we are more than prepared. I hope we can do this with my best friend Sun. He bought a small tent but I think they bought it on impulse as camping in Korea requires quite a bit of equipment.

When we got home on Sunday, we napped, and read our books. It was relaxing. Now this week is the week we finally finish the hogwan website. Time to put the thinking caps on! (it will be a very simple set up, just more informative, and up to date than the current confusing "pretty" website.


Thursday, October 22, 2015

Camping part 3

Well it looks like we are going to do this again. This time Gospel (english nickname) a friend of mine has free time at the end of this month basically next week. He works on the US air force base, and I think they will be closed for halloween. That means camping! Of course this is a Korean style camping meaning that there are many amenities, more than a typical American campsite. Well what I mean is Koreans who glamp (glamorous camping) practically bring their living room with them, and half of the kitchen. I want to take some detailed pictures next week to illustrate this. Who knows perhaps I am wrong and this might be another global trend, and I am just behind the times.

Next Monday I will order this. Actually this isn't exactly what it looks like but it is pretty close. It isn't too expensive or even very heavy about 10kgs. I hope that I can place my other tents under it. Or at least place one tent under it. We will have to see. I do not relish the idea of sleeping with my boys under one tent. Jeyo moves and moves and moves, George is ok, but...I want privacy...also Charlie might be with us as well...So um....its better if I can place the tents under it.
I plan on cooking up some American style burgers, and shish kabobs later in the day. Oh yeah hotdogs too!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Blogging from my lg g pro2

I installed the blogger app on my new smart phone. This is actually better because now I can upload more pictures as I use this camera more than my dslr. It looks like we will be going camping at the end of this month. The only thing is that a location hasn't been decided on yet.

Other stuff my back has been killing me. I think it is due to constantly changing my position while sleeping. Ugh.

This week I will finalize the website. Actually it will be a rough draft. We will use both English and Korean. It is time to properly reach people who want to study English. In gunsan we are still basically the only place that specializes in adult esl classes.
Yogita and i have been enjoying beef sashimi in our neighborhood. I will post a few pics below.

Friday, October 16, 2015

New Income stream!

Well first I am so happy to with Yogita. She has put her writing skills to good use. Right now we will be blogging and getting paid for it. Its not alot of money but we have found that this really fits us. Of course we are not quitting our day jobs! But it is nice to have money set aside in a paypal account that we will never touch. Meanwhile the next venture will be editing, proofreading. Editing documents is something that we do on a regular basis for free. It is time to get paid for it. Countless times I have corrected cover letters, essays, and even science papers. In Korea people really have poor writing skills. It is something that just isnt focused on. This is mainly due to the fact that education in Korea is largely driven by parents (mothers) who know only how they were educated. In addition every odd idea that some guru comes up with moms go nuts over it. For example one year it was using ONLY flashcards. Teaching students using ONLY one source of material in which many of the phrases were wrong can drive one up the wall. 

We might be going camping with Gospel at the end of this month. He is getting time off for halloween. I hope his schedule changes he really needs to practice his English, also he was nice addition to my class. This week on Tuesday was our 15th wedding anniversary. We will celebrate tonight, I know what I want to do....only going to that area of is pretty far from the main area of Gunsan. Basically, I want to try authentic Vietnamese food. The issue is that the resturant is in the industrial zone, actually it is in the newly expanded part of the zone. 

My best friend will be getting his new car this week. So perhaps we will hang out, of course we will have a photo op. I hope to spend more time with him but I think he doesn't hanging out with his wife all that much. This makes me think of a previous post where I rant on about how couples do not invest in each other. Oh well time to update the eve blog.


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Chusok and....a NIECE!

We just got the good news yesterday, Abu my sister in law just had a baby girl. She was born 10 days early but she is doing well and yesterday thanks to Jitu (my brother in law), we found out that she is back home resting with her new daughter. 

I am sure they are going to have their hands full, but it is a blessing as well! 
This Chusok we will not be traveling, we will stay local and go on day trips. Yogita and I will head out on the town to explore the post chusok crowd. 

We went camping last weekend was pretty cold. IF we go camping we are going to dress more warmly. With thermal underwear which we can change into stored in our tents. 

Also if we go camping this time we so some American style grilling burgers, steaks and the such. 

ok I gotta run! It is a hump day!


Thursday, September 10, 2015

Mini Pc update time

Last time I upgraded our PC's it was just RAM and a larger monitor for Yogita. This time I need to make a choice because I can not afford a major overhaul. Basically Yogita's Pc's weakest point is her CPU. It is a fx 4100 AMD quad core cpu. It operates at 3.6 GHz, and well that sounds nice isn't. I admit when I bought the CPU it was an upgrade to her AMD triplecore cpu. It was nice a cpu but start showing its age after 4 years.
The main issue is that the cpu really struggles with games. You can tell by looking at CPU activity. When the CPU is at 80-90% when running a are going to run into lag, not internet based....but PC lag. This is much worse as it can cause a computer to hang (freeze).

I thought increasing RAM, and cleaning her GPU would work. It did, but now her system runs OK, but still its on the edge of hanging, or just crashing. So I need to figure out a cost effective way to fix this. I have 2 solutions. One, upgrade her CPU to a higher spec AMD cpu, or get a second hand motherboard cpu combo, the cpu would be an Intel cpu, i5, or i7. Older i5's and i7's are still really good cpus. The i5 is a real work horse it is a quad core, while the i7 is a quad core with hyperthreading, so it is like you have 8 cores. I have an i7 3770k cpu. I bought it in 2012, and at the time it had be released 6 months ago. Even now I get NO issues from my CPU. My issues are RAM and gpu related our gtx 560 ti's are starting show driver issues. I think a reformat might be in store for me.

Time to check out cpu benchmarks, and reviews. In addition I need to get her water cooling, it is so much easier to maintain! In addition it is more effective. I love my water cooled i7!


Thursday, September 03, 2015

Cooler weather is finally here!

Of course in Lucknow India there is a heatwave that is still on going. Here in east Asia cooler weather is finally approaching. Last weekend we went camping and it went really well. I have to post pictures of that perhaps in an upcoming post. I learned more about the first tent that we bought. Yogita and I have always wondered what a set of springs did at the top of the tent. We would always run into issues because the support poles would always buckle. Well what you are SUPPOSED to do is push that spring down to give tension to the support poles. Once we did, even though it was very windy that tent held up just fine.

Some updates on our boys...George is now taller than Yogita and almost as tall as I am. Jeyo is growing slowly, but wow he is far more healthier now. This not a diss on Indian food. Rather it is noting that when parents listen to kids, not using common sense, or rather ignoring common sense cause you know kids are cute.... Jeyo was borderline underweight. When we were in India he would get sick, and would need DAYS to recover. I knew something wasn't right, and I saw it practically the first day we were in India. It was at mealtime. I saw my youngest son eating ketchup instead of eating the veggies. The main dish he would put on this pout and say in Hindi "its too spicy", and he would cough on cue. What an act! Well in conclusion to this story lets just say now Jeyo RARELY gets sick and when he does rest with plenty of fluids does the trick. Also he LOVES more foods now than he ever did. Last month he said "Mommy I wish I ate all of my food when I was in India". The reason...because he now could see what he was missing out on.

Favorite foods my boys enjoy: any kind of grilled meat with veggies, dal and rice with veggies (along with a spicy chutney), salads, all kinds of seafood....the list could go on and on.

They play in the same way I used to play with my brothers. We called it "Land" basically we each had a nation state, and would war with each other sign treaties. It was good fun. I am still looking for a mmorpg that do something similar. There are some out there...

ok I think this a good time to sign off with my usual...


Thursday, August 27, 2015

Picnic or maybe camping...

Well this weekend we will be having a picnic with many of our adult students. Yogita and I want to create a special interest group based on English. Mainly, we will meet at least once a month (except vacation season in July and August). We will either have dinner, go hiking, spend some time at the beach, basically some activity with one rule: You must try to use only English. Now I use the word try for a reason, not everyone has the same proficiency in English. So for members who are not able to speak so well, they should at least try. 

It was not easy finding a good location but we were able to find a spot in Gunsan near the estuary dam, or dike. I look forward to seeing everyone there and I will make sure to post pictures of our activities on facebook, and this blog.

On a side note...I am very glad that I have this blog, and I have posted somewhat regularly over the years. For example I thought I bought our iphones in 2010. Actually we bought them in 2011. 2011 all cell phones could be unlocked for free. So when we went to India in late 2012 any cellphone we bought from Korea would have been unlocked. Nice to have a blog where I can go back and check on things. Abu got married late 2010, or early 2011. I had that all wrong as well too...


Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Finally the weather cools!

Well it is that time yet again. Actually, right now we are on an operation in eve online. Basically, 79 people form a fleet of ships, and head to fight some rival faction. It is very very boring because there are many things are op sec. We as line grunts just follow orders. The highlight is when the shooting starts. Mayhem at times, sheer fun delight.

What makes this night even better is that we have a nice cool breeze blowing through our apartment. AHH, I will I have a bit of vodka later to warm the bones.

Yogita is having a blast while we wait on a stargate (remember...op sec), reading old post on this blog....I HOPE SHE STARTS TO CONTRIBUTE AGAIN.

This weekend we plan to go to beach with a large group of our students. I will be taking lots of pictures and posting them to youtube. This will be bigger than our camping trip. I am thinking about doing more events like this.

It looks like there might be almost 17-18 people joining us on the beach!

This is a ...cow.....ok its a random pic. Dad and I went to a rural area to meet a friend of his whose name guessed it Jamal!


Thursday, August 20, 2015

Work work....

More classes more hours, its all good cause..well its work. This weekend I just want to relax at home. Maybe go for an early morning drive, perhaps pick up some doughnuts, and coffee, hot chocolate for the boys. Head to a small beach in Jang-hang, or perhaps somewhere else.

We are so behind the latest tv shows that we are having a very good time downloading and watching mini series. I will buy a 1.5 or 2 terabyte external hard drive to store ONLY tv programs, and some movies. Having such a set up is so nice. You never know when it might come in handy. For example in 2013 I got sick in India, it was nothing serious but we had startrek DS9, and voyager thats like 100 gigs right there. We also had other programs, this time around I want all of it on an external drive. External HHD's are more durable than the regular drives (SSD is the king of course but that tech is still too expensive for mass storage). Solid State Drives (SSD) are still pretty expensive. I could see buying a couple of 250 gig drives for our programs, and game folders. However, for mass is still a bit pricey. For photos 32gig sd cards are nice, videos on the other need the cheaper larger drives.

So if I end up back in the States, or India where the internet isn't cheap with limitless downloads, a large external drive with all of our mini series will be awesome.

It is crazy but Yogita and I have been in Korea almost years...well since we returned at the end of 2013. Time really does fly! My best friend and I have had many good times together, along with our families. Take for instance last week, Sun had a family get together but families are families there are always those tense moments. So we made a plan to "show up" at the same location, and diffused some of the tension, and he and I spent some rare time together. His work schedule doesn't allow him time for weekend fun with his family. I have to say giving up weekend work has made a huge difference with yogi and I.

Well time to get busy! Our next vacation err holiday will be in about 5 weeks.


Tuesday, August 11, 2015

unexpected holiday...thank you Madam President

Well  it seems because this year will mark the 70th anniversay of South Korea's (I guess North Korea too?) independence friday will be an optional holiday. In addition all highways will be free of cost!!!! NO TOLLS! 

This is a bittersweet pill for yogi and I, cause if we had known about this we would have gone to the east coast on Friday (at the end of this week). 
I was just told that a 24 year old man killed himself at Unpa lake park. It seems he could not land a job and out of frustration he ended his life. I am sure that it is more to it than that. Likely, he suffered from depression, and not obtaining a job pushed him over the top. 
I feel that young Korean men do not want to get low paying jobs, they hold out for cushy salaried positions. This is terrible because even with a low paying job they can still support themselves. Most of these young peope live at home, so it isnt like they have to stress about finding their own place. In addition there are so many western style studio apartments popping up everywhere. These apartments are not expensive. There is a large one near our hagwon. 

Abu was hospitalized yesterday, and given treatment. She was released today, and is doing well. As she is going to have a baby, this is a very stressful, and to be honest quite scary event. I am happy that  she is doing well. Even as I write this she is resting at home getting ready for lunch. Lets hope she eats for 2! 

Ok I gotta go!


Random picture

I was cutting steak when we went camping about a month and a half ago. Oh Jeyo ISNT SLEEPY!!! He was caught mid blink!

Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Post vacation!

Wow I dont rememeber Korea being this humid and hot in the 15 years I have spent here. Our vacation was awesome. But, it sure was hot! 

Firstly, we stuck to our guns and left Gunsan very early, something I usually do when I travel with just my family. We got really lucky and the place we stayed at charged us only 100 bucks. Actually the owners son was there, and he didn't try to squeeze more cash out of us. He was just an honest boy. 
We posted a short video on facebook, but the place where we stayed was so nice. It was right in the middle of a valley, at the base of the mountain that muju resort is situated on. 

Hats off to Sun, I really thought this trip would be like the others. What a pleasant time we had. We all enjoyed water gun fights, splashing around in the creek, while drinking a few beers.

We ventured out after dinner for some chicken and beer in muju resort it's self. Early the next morning we went for nice walk around a scenic lake. Life in Korea is hectic at the best of times. It can be  real grind as well, when work hours pick up. Trying to get a few days here and there to take it easy, is a real challenge. 

Our goal before Chu-sok is a get started on a TESOL program for yogi and I. This added cirtificate is widely sought after in the ESL industry. We have given guidance to students over the years who were enrolled in the program. So we have seen what it is about. 

Yogita and I are reading some really interesting books, which is helping us beat the heat!
Oh the boys well....they are young they have a good time regardless. 


Thursday, July 30, 2015

It's burning up!!!

We are burning up here in South Korea! In India and Pakistan many people were killed due to long heat waves. I am sure we will hear in the news about some elderly people who have expired due to this humid heat. The temperatures are about the same as they are in Lucknow India. The thing is it is a mixture of humidity, and heat. Witth so much moisture in the air, humans have a hard time cooling off. Exessive sweating but no real cooling, means that you lose even more fliuds with no benefit. 

I am a bit this kind of heat it might be best to stay off of beaches. Many people are heading to valleys where there is a lot of natural shade, cool winds from the surrounding mountains. 
Oh  yeah and don't forget the mountain streams, and small rivers. I need to talk to my best friend but...we are all so busy. In the evening when we finally do have time..we are so tired. This heat saps strength. Usually I play eve for about 1.5 hours, sometimes 2 hours. Now? I can barely stand 30-40 minutes. Also I find that I am sleeping more. Usually I sleep 4 to 5 hours, now 6 to 7. I think my body likes this new change, but I do not. 

The boys are taking it well. Both of them walk about with out a shirt on (copying me). They sleep soundly, and their patterns have not been put off due to this heat. Today I will get a haircut....this hair...ugh I feel like I have a sweater on my head!

So take care out there, it's hotter than hell!!!


I can't wait till the winter rolls around!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015


So here we are with a couple of days off in a couple of weeks. So once again the urge to hit the road is upon us. I really want to return to the east coast and grill some meat on the beach, while sipping a gin tonic with a slice of lemon in the glass. We have a better tent now. Last trip our older tent had many issues basically the tarp kept failing. Now with our newer tent that should not be much of an issue. I am thinking about buying a larger tarp that I can place over both tents. One tent will have our supplies and space for the boys. While our other tent will be for Yogita and I. Boys are well..boys they get really really dirty and I don't want that in the tent Yogita and I will be in. 

I know they will want to have a tent they can relax in (even though they will likely spend very little time in it). 


we will treat this like a camping trip, so we will bring a grill and other veggies, and a nice cook out on the beach. Well basically thats the plan but you never know....we might just stay in Gunsan, or maybe take a short trip to the west coast.

We will see!


Monday, July 13, 2015

My journal....

Wow did I used to sound like that? Today I picked up my 20 year old journal. The poor thing is falling apart with frayed edges, and the pages becoming very soft. I feel like I have do it a diservice. I did not update it as much as I should have. Well, at least it is still with me. It has been everywhere I have been.
And here it lies before me, a 3 subject notebook with a spiral thingy (I forgot what they are called and I don't feel like "googling it") 

I guess I should not feel too bad I mean using this nifty app I can take pictures and boom it's included in my post. I will digitalize it perhaps next week I will start on it. Now that I am a man, I can see that I have learned a lot. Heck I am still learning. I am thankful to my partner in crime Yogita Hogan. She is awesome, and even though she might say I have taught her a lot, that is a two way street! 

I am teaching a pair of twins some basic writing skills, they are coming along nicely. I hope they can find joy in writing things down. I know in school, and university it's a part of life, can be so much fun, and insightful when you look at what you wrote years later! 


Wednesday, July 08, 2015


Just some pictures from our camping trip.

Here you can see both our small tents I the for ground.

Heavy rain...our older tent....failed.

Actually I am using a new app to publish blog post....I'm loving it so far! 

/ tata

Cooking results, crap picture.....

Well the picture will not do it justice.....I need to work on taking better photos. Yesterday I was so hungry and the beans smelled crazy good! The end result was that I forgot to take a proper picture and ended up taking a crappy pic. I blame the picture on my hunger. 

Taste I wanted to use the chile peppers and wow it was so good a nice heat. We used a mix of ground pork and beef, and other spices. 
So there it is the beans were fresh not dried very very nice! I used potatoes and some corn starch as a thickener. Next time I want to use a mix of black beans, and white beans along with chunks of pork.


Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Time to get back to cooking

In our family usually Yogita cooks, in fact in this blog if you look back over the years you can see some of her creations. However, I too love to cook! Its just that after 15 years of marriage I just...stopped. Well it is time to get back into the kitchen. I LOVE cooking and I am going to start with one of the first dishes my mother taught me that is bean stew done. From there I want to head over to steaks, and fish, and even fried chicken!

Tonight I put together with Yogitas help (I do not know how to operate a pressure cooker) Kidney bean stew. I added a nice little handful of chili peppers for some nice heat. The chili peppers are dried thai peppers that we bought in Iksan. I love the dry heat they have. It isn't an oily kind of heat but a nice dry burn!

I will take pictures of it...well Yogita will she loves taking pictures of the food that she prepares. Hopefully the LG G pro 2's 13 megapixel camera will show it in all of its glory.


Monday, July 06, 2015

Time for a bit of change!

I have really learned to enjoy my job. Other teachers in gunsan usually say things like "wow teaching at Hyundai is hard!". They would be correct. Our curricula is based on not only conversational books, or phonics. We focus on other appliciplable skills in which English is at the core. For example, presentation English, or teaching business style English at factories. Actually the latter is quite a challenge as some businesses require a certain focus, in which case the teacher must be flexible.

We also teach test prep like toiec, teps, toiec speaking, and toiec writing. Well this week I will be teaching prose, and basic writing skills. A real change in the usual routine! Time to put our thinking caps on! 


Thursday, July 02, 2015

Summer fun?

Spring was very expensive family entertainment wise. We basically did things we normally do I the spring! For example going to beach, and camping...well that was early summer. 
Actually buying the tents and additional supplies, and gear was an investment. So actually I am happy about that.
Now we are actually in the summer, and peak vacation season is breathing down our necks. Well in a good way of course. We have decided to give camping another go. However for our summer vacation I am thinking about toning it down this year. Perhaps it's time to just take it easy.  We will have to see. The mers outbreak in South Korea has really put a lot of people off from visiting and traveling. I am hoping this results in cheaper prices for accommodations so as to attract vacationers. Usually the prices are stupidly high. If that is the case this year...then I will not head east. If not....I'm outta here! 
I have a new smart phone it's more like a phablet a smart phone plus tablet. It's screen is 5.9 inches. It's a lg G pro 2 

It's a monster of a phone but it's not bad. It's take some time to get used to it. I will post pics of it next to my iPhone 4 in a later blog post. Oh well another busy day, with new classes next week! 


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

My views on Korean style camping

In Korea camping is not really an exercise in roughing it. Actually its seems more like an overnight show and tell. People bring tents that are so large and overly complicated that it takes almost 2 hours to set up their tents. 2 HOURS. One student of mine said that its not setting up a tent its a "construction job". Now I am not saying having large tents that are like mini homes is a bad thing. Its just really strange when people go through all the hassle just for ONE night, setting up a very large tent.

In Korea the term "glamping" is basically taking the words glamours, and camping then smashing them together. It isn't really camping. It's a glamours style of camping in which you are showing off your status.

When we went to the campsite Yogita and I had both of our tents up in 40 mins. It took so long because we didn't understand the directions for the new tent. The pictures were wrong, and the directions where a bit vague. However, after we figured it out I am sure we could erect both tents in 20 mins, with another 10 minutes securing them if it is a windy day. The day we went it rained very heavily and our older tent had to be taken down, too much water was pooling at the base of the tent.

So will I buy a massive tent? No! But I will buy a very large tarp that I can use for extra shade and protection against heavy rain. I saw only 2 other families with tents like ours BUT they had a large tarp which kept the rain out.

Korea....glamping is kind of over kill, its just camping.


Monday, June 15, 2015

Camping this weekend!

Yeah that is right we are going to go camping this weekend. We have owned our tent for 3 years and have used it 3 times, on the beach.

Korea goes through these periods were certain activities that are quite common in the States, takes on a huge radical following in Korea for a few years at a time. This time it is camping. I first started noticing the increase in popularity due to reality programs where celebs rough it for a couple days.

It was perhaps in 2012 I noticed more and more "camping grounds". Places with neat little partitions where people pitch their tent. Well the camping fever has increased even more. Campsites seem to be everywhere. In Korea distance is very important. People feel that traveling 300 miles is like traveling 1000 miles in America, or Canada.

Its really funny I keep trying to encourage my friend to take a trip thats like 400 kilometers round trip....every time...he saids "its too far bro". AAHGGHHGHGH

With this in mind camp ground owners know this. So they set up practically in your backyard. Ok well not like that but they are only 15-20 minutes from Gunsan.

So this week we will buy a second larger tent, 2 chairs (folding types), and some mats we can place on the floor of tent as padding. Other people are bringing other supplies so it is a team event. This week ought to be exciting preparing for the expedition that is only a stones throw distance by car. Heck the Equus won't even get a chance to stretch her legs and let her 3.5 liter V6 Roar. No its more like "Ok guys lets go!",,,short time later "We are here!" No rest stops, or bathroom breaks. scenic views where you have to call the drivers to arrange a short stop to take some nice photos.

Even so I am excited! LOL

Pictures will be coming!


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Why don't couples invest in themselves?

I have a friend, who is in an unhappy marriage. I have another friend who had a marriage that failed. I have people around me who are just not happy. I should say that there are some couples that are happy. One way in Korea that I can see a couple investing in each other is if they spent time together without the kids. You can see this in shopping centers, and restaurants. In parks you can see older couples walking hand in hand without the little ones in tow.

However, most parents will say: "After getting married, I must spend all of my time taking care of my kids". Usually women say this, men due to work they say something along the lines of needing to work hard and make money. That means: women 95% focus on their kids, while men 95% focus on work (that includes a number of "activities" that are work related).

So when people see me laughing with my wife of 15 years, they are shocked. They don't seem to remember the fun they had when they were newly married. When after work they would spend time just being together. Sharing and exploring each others hobbies, or venturing out into areas of new interests. This is not to say that Americans, or Indians do it better. I feel that the same thing happens only slightly different due to cultural differences.

When I was India I was proud of my brother and sister in law who would take regular excursions with out the little one. It builds couples up. There is no need to feel guilty. My boys have even told us they are happy when they see us having a good time together.

People WAKE UP, happy couples = happy families! Stop wasting time following worldly trends, and look at the person you married. Become one flesh! You will have a great time!


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

A wonderful trip!

So we set out to Go-seong which is about 30km north of Seok-cho, and wow were we very surprised! In this small town we found that prices were MUCH lower, however next time we will make sure to bring our portable stove. We basically camped out on the beach all day. I loved it. Yogita and I figured out that the teachers we lent our tent to lost 2 of our poles. We had to come up with a rather unusual set up because the tarp we used to cover our tent and give extra shade kept getting knocked down because of the wind.

So this is the place we will go if we want to get away from it all. I think later this year in fall or winter months we head to Nam-hae (basically that means southern area).
We rented a Kia K5 for the trip and due to the low cost of lpg fuel cost were much lower than if we used our Equus. In addition there are many mountains, and our Equus would have guzzled fuel like crazy.

Oh another thing; the hotel was right on the beach, and during peak season they even offer some basic meals. We will be posting pictures on facebook, and this blog.

Also another nice thing about that area is that it was not very crowded at all! No traffic jams, the beaches were very clean with crowds of tents, and not littered with junk, and trash from other beach goers.

The trip home was very long and we got a very good  idea of what it was like to travel in Korea before the numerous highways we have today. Long but very scenic!


Monday, May 11, 2015

Hmm 3 days off this month....

So what do to do...what to do. Well first off we have a wedding to attend in Seoul. I have not decided if I will drive my Eqqus, or rent a car. I really need a working navigation, getting around Seoul isn't impossible but it is just much easier with one.
This week we need to set up a wireless Internet hot spot to help us communicate with our friends, and get our Korea.

It seems like this Friday will be a holiday so I will head up to Seoul and perhaps using craigslist purchase some PC components like CPU water coolers, and a more advanced CPU/motherboard for Yogita. In addition I need a wind breaker for this coming winter..I hate heavy coats but a nice wind breaker does just the trick.

We are also getting a day off on the 25th of this it never ends. We have made plans to travel with my best friend but....I am not dead set on following through with those plans. I hope we can come up with something more exciting.

OK its time to close up the academy!


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Finally a day off is in sight!

Well finally we are approaching a few holidays, well...actually just 2, one next and and another at the end of may. Next week is children's day, which is a national holiday. However in Korea if a holiday falls on say a Tuesday that week isn't converted to a 3 day weekend. Instead we have a "sandwich" day that is we work on Monday, then rest on Tuesday. It was a bit weird getting used to it, its no big deal.

However, I don't think I want to do much, perhaps go for a short drive, take my family to a nice Chinese restaurant out in 회현. I heard some bad news from a student of mine that I am very friendly with. Some one she knows was diagnosed with cancer. I just hope that biopsy shows that the tumor is benign.

The boys are doing well, and hardly get into any serious trouble. I feel quite fortunate, but I have come to realize why I was such a handful with my own mother. She basically raised us alone. Seeing that she had 5 children to care for it must have been overwhelming. My father worked very hard to support his large family, but the buck stopped there. He grew up in an environment where his father was aloof, distant, even cold. I have learned that way is not healthy if you want to build a relationship with your children.

I thank my mother, my father in law, and my mother in law for the good examples, and advice they gave me. I thank my father because despite his short comings he stayed in the trenches, and worked his ass off. That is a sacrifice. I get how he felt, I just wished he fought it like I am fighting the urge to distance myself from my boys. I make sure that my door is always open to them. Maybe they can not spend time with daddy every time they ask. Yet 7 times out of 10 they know I will say come on in. Also they know that I will listen to their stories, and answer the many questions that they have.

It is a struggle that I will NEVER give up. Lastly I must thank my wonderful little lady. Yogita is always supportive, and helps remind me of important things in my boys lives. This helps me to stay in tune with what is going on with them.

So yes finally there is a day off in sight, I look forward to spending the day with my family!


Thursday, April 23, 2015

Time for some el cheapo upgrades!

When you have a multimedia pc / gaming rig (mid range gaming rig) there some things that you really need. Those items can actually be quite cheap. Especially with todays PC market getting hammered by tablets. It is now looking like either pc's will be a think of the office, with only gamers really using PC's at home.

PC's have many compenents but today two items the hhd (sata drive, 3.5 inch, not SSD) are so cheap, and of course RAM (DDR3).

Perhaps in april we will be doing 2 things upgrading our internet connection and up grading our ram. Our graphic cards will have to wait until this fall.

On my pc as well as on Yogita's we have 2 hard drives one is a terabyte (TB), and the other is like 350 gigs. Ram...8 gigs each.

When I set up this pc back in 2012 I thought wow this will last for a long time. At that time my max RAM usage was like 3-4 gigs. Today....I can top 6gigs. Once I get to that level my pc feels like a 2002 pentium celeron.

I wish SSD's where cheaper but that is an upgrade for perhaps next year. Spinning hard have to be very careful with them but they can last for main drive is perhaps 6 years old.


Friday, March 13, 2015

Another loss....

This week my twin brother lost his father in law. It never ceases to amaze me how when you think things are at least stable....reality strikes. I pray that he can get through this many are praying for him and Wendy (my sister law). She lost her can tell in photos taken and posted on facebook Wendy shared a special bond with her father.

The way she smiled while holding on to his arm. It's a relationship I can only wonder what it was like. She will see him soon, and she will cry...but then again we will all be crying...tears of joy!
Those are the best tears.

So another Friday in South Korea, and Wendy and Omorro are on my mind. I remember the help they gave me when we were last in Alaska. Also when I had to crash at his place while waiting on visa papers go through back in 2008. I wish I could be there now.


Monday, March 09, 2015

The long stretch!

Well now that the holidays are over it is back to business. Basically new classes begin after a short downtime (sometimes we forget to enjoy it when the workload becomes lighter). I now have a corporate class that is restarting, I am every happy about the text book that I choose for the class.

Yogita is doing well, in fact she is quite happy that we have a car now. No more taxis or waiting around for one. For me this means more driving.....well I like driving so its no biggie. My brother in law bought a car late last year or perhaps in the summer of 2014 I will have to ask him.

Our boys are loving Korea, Jeyo has put on loads of weight and now actually enjoys food. George looks to be enjoying reading more. He is actually a budding trekkie, I often have to school him on the finer points of StarTrek.

My short term plans so far are upgrading my ram, and making some changes to Yogi's pc...her cpu lags on one of the games we play. Its really strange because it is a 3.5ghz quad core cpu but it is an AMD cpu, and lacks the hyperthreading that my i7 cpu has. But the lagg she has isn't a constant thing, but when things get very active in game...the lagg monster strikes! For me I am noticing that when we are watching programs, and I surf the net, and try to run 2 EVEONLINE clients....nearly all of my 8gigs is used up. So for the short term I will up my ram to 16gigs and yogi's to 12.

Upgrading her cpu might be the cheapest option perhaps a 6 core cpu? We will see.
Our car's transmission will need some work perhaps in April, but before the hot summer months. Oh yeah I have got the boys a PC, they currently use my old Ipad1 so for educational, and recreation they have a an old Pentium 4D system I will put a my old Nvidia GTS 250 in it...I love that card! It will not be taxed too greatly. The boys will basically be playing old arcade games, and some games that I will review to make sure it is ok for them. Oh and...NO INTERNET access for that way!

Ok gotta go!


We recently watched an had these cute guys in it....LOL

Thursday, February 19, 2015

5 day holiday!

Well it has been quite some time since I have updated our blog. Life has been busy and quiet in Gunsan. Something yogi and I both really need. We have our car now an Equus its a work horse with loads of bells of whistles that we enjoy. I will post pictures here in a bit, its sort of a tradition of this blog.

Our boys are growing so fast and having a good time, esp. during this holiday. My friends Sun has gone to China which is a regular activity for his extended family. Yogita and I will take day trips around our area with our boys.

Here are some pics well the one with me reaching for the camera is from our last family trip with Sun and his family.

Ahh...holidays we have 4 more days left!