Sunday, May 24, 2009


My friends Thomas and Marshall, and the guy who cuts Marshall's hair. Not sure I would have visited him the next day.

Pyun Sung, the owner of Fongs (favorite local bar), who went with us on the DeokJeokDo trip pictured in the previous post.

His wife Hyo Joo and my friends Heather and Liz. The fact that we don't speak more than a dozen words of the other's language doesn't seem to matter much.

My friend Peter and about half of the other teachers I work with on a recent Friday night at Fongs.

Liz, Marshall, and the owners of the local hair place.

A great Japanese style bar, called Fongs, opened up in town about six weeks ago. The owners are a young married couple who both love art and traveling. My friends and I go about once a week and are becoming great friends with them both. The husband is a chef and has started asking about our favorite foods so he can add them to the menu. Spaghetti bolognese is the most recent addition.

DeokJeokDo Island

My attempt at trying to catch a seagull in the act of grabbing cheetos out of the hand of an 8 year old. I think she understood what I was doing but that didn't seem to alleviate her confusion about who the westerner taking pictures of her forearm was.

Most of my friends, and the rest of the boat, trying to catch up on sleep missed the night before.

My good friend Liz and the dog she hoped was a stray, named Ralph, and tried to take back to Seoul with us (it was not a stray).

My friends Liz, Thomas, HJ, and Jake after playing some frisbee on the very foggy beach.

Heading back to Seoul after an exhausting 36 hours.

My first trip out of Seoul was to a small island off the western coast of South Korea, called DeokJeokDo. Sadly we were rained on almost the entire time, which meant we spent a little more time drinking soju under umbrellas than we would have otherwise. We found a hotel room big enough for the ten of us.....really just a big room with tons of blankets and a heated floor. We ate well, got in a great hike to the island's peak during a lull in the rain, and joined a big nighttime bonfire on the beach. The best part about the trip was the company of our favorite bar owners, who closed up shop and came with us for the weekend. They brought the drinks, we paid for everything else.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I brought my squash racket with me to Korea hoping to play but have long since abandoned it for the fierce sport of badminton. There are three courts close to my apartment and my friends and I usually play every week. A few weeks ago one of my students came out to play before school. He was more interested in hanging out with his teachers outside of class than playing. I often tell my students how good I'm getting......they rarely seem impressed. They're more curious about my favorite Korean pop stars, and not my new red Power Blade 3.0. Trust me, its awesome.

Monday, May 18, 2009


Our view of the track from the foreigners box (where the programs are printed in English).

After all the races are over people pour out of the park and walk straight into restaurants that have been set up on the curb. Folding tables, stools, gas stoves. It didn't seem to matter if people had lost or won big....they felt like some seafood stew and plenty of soju.

Truck bed seating....the epitome of sidewalk fine dinning.

Some beautiful cherry trees lined the promenade leading to the park.

Recently went to Seoul Horse Park and watched several races. My first time watching the ponies. I made sure to loose plenty of money so I wouldn't be tempted to make visits a regular thing. The place was packed with people, maybe 10000. There are 3 big tracks in Korea which all run their races 15 minutes apart. While you're waiting for the next race wherever you are you can also bet on the races taking place at the other two locations (Busan and someplace else).