Friday, September 14, 2012

Buy 2 typhoons, get the 3rd free

 This picture has absolutely nothing to do with this post.  It's an old picture from my trip to Japan that I re-edited and think looks pretty cool.

As the title of this post warns, we have yet another typhoon headed for Jeju.  This is the 3rd one in less than a month.  The first I posted about on here.  Though I think I failed to mention that it was a catagory 1 hurricane when it hit which frankly wasn't that.  And I definitely didn't mention that Vicky and I went out to Outback Steakhouse for dinner in it (we wore water proof/water logged clothing).  And I certainly didn't mention that after we got back, we changed into our bathing suits and met a couple friends at a nearby elementary school and played typhoon soccer, basketball and football outside during the worst of it.

The 2nd one was weak enough that I didn't even bother to say anything about it.  It was just a tropical storm and felt about like a good Texas thunderstorm.  This third one looks to be somewhere around a catagory 2-3 when it hits Sunday night/monday early morning.  I'm not worried about it but we are prepared just in case (extra water, candles, etc)

Otherwise life is pretty good.  Vicky is now comfortable teaching and thanks to her strong discipline, the kids are slowly behaving better (though it's definitely a work in progress).  My classes are going well.  One new girl I have is my first absolute beginner.  I'm teaching "hi" "bye" "I" "he" "she", the most basic of basics.  It's interesting and very challenging.

One randomly funny story that illustrates what it's like to live here happened to me the other day as I was taking the trash out to the dumpster nearby.  I dropped our trash and was heading back into the apartment building when a woman stopped me and said her 8 year old son would really like to talk with me.  Why you ask?  Because I'm a foreigner! So I ended up talking to both her and her son on the street for about 10 minutes before heading back upstairs.  Certainly keeps life interesting :)

Same picture.  Different editing.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Back to Jungmun Beach we go

 Sanbangsan near Seogwipo on the south side of Jeju

I'll start by saying that I'm in a fantastic mood today.  Those of you who know me well might be able to guess the cause.  My Cowboys just got done whipping the Giants in the NFL's season opener.  The heavy investment they made in cornerbacks this offseason looks like a great move so far and I'm really excited for the rest of the season.

So while I'm in a break at school and feeling so cheerful, I thought i'd tell you about last weekend.  On Saturday morning, Vicky, Jeb, Tom and I got up early and went down to the south side of the island to visit Jungmun Beach and it's huge waves.  This was Vicky's first trip down and a morning of bodysurfing was the plan.  Unfortunately the beach had other ideas.  We were bereft of wind.  An unexpected circumstance on this normally breezy island.  Without the wind, the waves were sadly small.  Fortunately we still swam, built sand castles and generally had fun.

Photographed at the peak of their hopefulness before a wave came to crush their dreams (and sand wall)

After an hour or 2 at Jungmun, we headed for a small nearby mountain named Sanbangsan (pictured at the top).  Again luck was not in our favor as the hike up had been damaged by the recent typhoon and the mountain was closed (yes in Korea they close whole mountains).  But again fun was had when we discovered a series of old Imperial Japanese caves along the ocean.  Exploring, hiking and pictures followed.

Cool huh?

The rest of the news is quick.  The two typhoons that blew through did little to no damage.  We actually went out and played soccer in the stronger typhoon (it was crazy fun!).  And after the typhoons moved on, the weather has been cooler and gorgeous!  High 70s to mid 80s has been perfect summer weather for almost anything we can think of.  And the cool evening zephyrs let us throw open our 7th floor windows and enjoy the night.  They also make walking home instead of busing it a very pleasant suggestion (20 minutes vs 6 by bus).  One Vicky and I are about to take right now.  Bye.

PS.  If you want something funny that is huge hit here and is becoming surprisingly popular in the US, click on the video link below.  It's for a video called Gangnam Style.  All you need to know is that it's mocking the richest neighborhood in Korea and the lifestyle it espouses.  And the dance is hilariously, awesomely terrible :)