Sunday, September 26, 2010

Went Camping on Chuseok

Most Koreans visit their families on Chuseok but me and my hubby have decided to relax on that day. My in laws live very far from us and on special holidays like this, it takes us a day to travel to their hometown. So I called siomoni (my mother in law) and Hyeongnim (sister in law) and said that we couldn't go there on that day. So on Chuseok me and my hubby went camping.

First, my hubby called and asked if the camping sites are open on Chuseok and if there are campers. And yes they are open but not many people go camping on this special occasion. There were 2 tents set up when we arrived there. One for the couple with two kids and another for ajassis who were drinking soju. I think they are having reunion and they are spending it at the camp site. Too bad because people went there to relax but they were too noisy so one family left. After few hours, we left too. Luckily, I got some pictures to share so hang on.

On our way to camp site. The weather forecast said that it would rain but we still hit the road.

And that's our tent. The other one was the old men's. There was another tent set on the ground. Just next to the deck area but at least they can't hear much noise unlike us.

Here's the bathroom. Not too many people so it was clean.

And the washing area. It's where we can wash the dishes.

And the food. Ohh, there's a lot of food. That's supposed to be until the next day but we couldn't stay the night there.

Before it's too late, we decided to go to the office and get refund. We complained about the noise made by the drunk ajassis so they talked and warned them but we still chose to leave. They gave the money back.

Next to the entrance were these beautiful houses. I just saw them when my hubby was talking to the manager.

We decided to leave and on our way home, it rained a lot. Well, everything happens with reasons so we were not disappointed at all.

I wish

My hubby was watching tv and I told him to change the channel because my favorite drama was on. But he said he wanted to watch the news about the famous comedian here in Korea. We waited and saw that the Mr. Shin, one of the most famous comedian went to another country to gamble. Haven't he heard about the flash casinos? Many people saw him and told to the media. They wanted to find out if the gossip was true so they flew to that country and took some more information. They didn't see him gambling but many people said that they saw him at the casino. I don't know if it's true but my hubby said that he lost his job as an entertainer. He said we can't see him on tv anymore. That's too bad! I like him because he's fun.

Why did he have to go in that country to gamble? Did he think that it was safe because he wasn't in his own country? He can just play Free casinos online. It's much safer because nobody can notice him. He can enjoy free slots. Too bad because it's too late to know about it. I wish he knew it earlier.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

My Chuseok Day

Oh yes, it's still holiday here. It's a long vacation. There was heavy traffic from Monday. Our 15 minutes drive from work to home took us almost an hour. Even when there were many traffic officers, they couldn't stop the traffic.

Holiday started on Tuesday and we were supposed to visit my in laws but my hubby decided to go camping instead. We left in the afternoon because we woke up at noon. There weren't many people at the camping site. Only three tents were set up including ours. Before dark, one of the campers decided to leave and a few hours later, we left too. The reason was because of the drunk ajassi (old men). There were too noisy. We went there to relax and get rest but we couldn't endure their noise so we went to the office and got refund the money that we paid for the deck and entrance fee. The administrator warned the ajassis because new campers came. At first they were setting up the tent on the deck area but before we left they moved to another area. They chose to set the tent on the ground next to the deck area because of the noise.

It rained a lot while we were on our way home. We knew that it would rain so I think it's a good choice to go home. Actually, it flooded the other part of the country including Seoul. There was heavy rain and flood in some area during Chuseok.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Korean Driver's Licenses

What must a foreigner do to obtain a Korean driver's license? If you are licensed to drive from other countries, you may "exchange" it for a Korean. The process is different depending on the country in which the foreign license was issued, but generally you will need to have the foreign driver's license, your passport, ID pictures and written confirmation of driver's license from your embassy. Korean driver's licenses issued based on foreign licenses are the "Class 2" category, allowing you to drive vehicles under 9 passengers and trucks less than 4 tons.

Licenses from countries that Korea does not have an exchange agreement with require separate process for being recognized for a Korean one. Citizens of Australia, China, Laos, New Zealand, Singapore and the United States are required to take a simple test. The test is composed of 20 questions and can be taken in English, Chinese, Japanese, German and French.

What do you have to do to get a new license issued to you on Korea? First you have to take a test of 50 multiple choice questions with four possible answers each. This test can be taken in Korean, English, Japanese, Chinese, French, German and Vietnamese. Thai and Indonesian are also being considered. If you pass the test, you're then allowed to proceed to an "ability test" that is simple test of your driving ability and is taken at the test site. If you past this ability test you then take ten hours or more of actual driving training, after which you must past a test of actual driving. Korea has driving schools all over the country, so you can easily obtain a Korean driver's license from one of these schools.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Chuseok Day is Coming

Chuseok Day is coming. This year, it struck the calendar on September 21st -23rd Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Some schools and institutes are closed for a week. They don't have class on Monday and Friday either. What a long vacation! I think they decided to have a week vacation because most of them are going to their hometowns and it's impossible to go back home on time with the heavy traffic. It's bumper to bumper on Chuseok Day. Expect to drive 4 hours more than your regular arrival time.

What do people do on Chuseok or Thanksgiving Day? Most people go to their hometowns to celebrate Chuseok with the whole family. On this day, Myeonoris or daughters in law are too tired preparing some food. Most people visit the tomb of their ancestors to give respect to them. They also bring some food to offer and then eat the food after the offerings.

I'm just curious when they offer food to the tomb because they also pour some soju or korean alcohol to the tomb and light some cigarettes and put in front of the tomb that seems like the dead person is drinking soju or smoking.

You're in good hand

There are many new cars appear in the market. I'm lying if I say that there's nothing that we don't like to have. There's a type of car that caught our attention but it doesn't mean that we have to buy just because we like it. We like that new type of car but we love our old car. And my hubby said that he would never change it. He already changed some parts of it but never thought of buying a new car. A month ago, my hubby bought new car seats. And now, he's thinking of changing the other parts again so it will be safer, more comfortable and more beautiful.

We are satisfied with every parts that we bought. We are so happy to see our car with its new parts and accessories. So if you have an old car, I recommend you to change some parts that needed to be changed or fixed and get some dodge accessories for a better car rather than buying a new one. You and your car are in good hands if your accessories are from Dodge, the one of the true giants of the American auto industry. And it's still one of the most revered names in the world.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Post Office in Korea

Korea's post offices are operated by the national government. There are more than 3,700 spread about the country, so you can find one easily no matter where you go. And yet, there's one just across my apartment building. Post offices have good services. They deliver so fast and it's very reliable. It delivers faster than what you think. When my mother in law sends some kimchi or other products to my sister in law, she goes to the post office in the morning. She said they deliver some goods in the morning so if she goes there in the morning, the goods that she wants to send will reach the destination earlier because they can bring her package on that same day.

There are different types of services if you want to send letters or package within Korea. You can send by "registered mail" (deunggi) where you can trace the route of delivery and it is given directly recipient. There's also the "next day service" (igilteukgeup), a service when you want to have something delivered the next day in most places throughout Korea. And the "door to door" (taekbae) service where you can call the post office and have the item picked up from your home or company. It is a good idea to use "Express Mail Office" (EMS) when sending a letter or package from Korea to another country which is quick and reliable. You can also use EMS to send kimchi, tea, marine products, and other products offered by the postal office.

In recent years, Koreas post offices have begun offering financial and other services like opening an account, get insurance and pay taxes and fees. Post Offices in Korea have good service but beware of the voice phishing where they use the named post office and telling you to pay something that you don't know.

Post offices are open from Monday-Friday but in large areas or cities, they are also open on Saturdays.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

It's Tea Time

Koreans don't drink tap water. We always boil some water and put something like wheat, corns, etc. for our drinking water. In my case I put a little amount of green tea leaves. We got used to it so it seems like we just drink plain water because we still drink tea after meals specially on weekends. And last night, my hubby invited me to go out and we dropped by to the market to buy different kinds of tea.

Thanksgiving Day is coming and I already have something in mind on what to give as a present for my friends and relatives. Because Koreans love tea so I'm thinking of buying some Christmas tea gift set. It's not Christmas but the tea gift set is not only a good gift on Christmas Day but also in all kinds of occasion. There are over 100 different kinds of tea so name your favorite and you can get it for a very affordable price. You can even get some teapots, mugs and cups, kettles and tea accessories so you can enjoy your tea with Christmas tea. So, what time is it? It's tea time!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Korean's Health Food in the Summer

There are lots of tiems in the summer season when you lose your appetite, you feel fatigued, and you lose your energy. Thus, Koreans try to restore their enegy by eating foods that are believed to be helpful to that end, and typical example would be samgyetang. Samgyetang is made by stuffing a young chicken with ginseng, garlic, jujubes, and glutinous rice and cooked under a slow boil. Chicken is high in protein so is nutritious, and young chicken is more so. Ginseng is a widely recognized restorative good for bringing back your summer energy and dealing with fatigue. Once they have had samgyetang in the hottest summer and perspired as result, Korean forget the heat and have vigor restored. Samgyetang is neither hot nor salty, so meets well with foreigners' taste.

A refreshing bowl of noodles is always popular in summer. Mulnaengmyeon is famous in the summer but kongguksu is one type of noodle dish for the summer months, and is made of noodles (guksu) in soybean (kong), which is ground and made into a juice before the noodles are added. It is often eaten with a little ice in it as if it were water. The soybean soup is heavy and has a savory and simple taste. You can easily find yourself fatigued if you lack protein, and since kongguksu is rich in vegetable protein, it is perfect for the sweaty summer months.

Everyone drinks a lot when it's hot outside, and if you care about your health you should drink plum tea (maesilcha) instead of carbonated drinks. Measil, a variety of plum are used in wine, jam, juice and tea, but the easiest way to enjoy them are as a cold tea, measilchat. Maesil are good for recovering from fatigue and are help smoothing going for the intestines and stomach. An increasing number of people are drinking maesilcha or dessert, and it is specially popular in summer.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Travel Informations

I love traveling so I enjoy reading blogs related to traveling. I've been to some countries and I love every minute that I spent in those countries. Actually, I've been thinking of going back there again if I could have a chance. At first, I thought traveling is just visiting famous attractions. But then after visiting few countries I found out that going to Restaurants, bars and coffee shops is also a lot of fun because you can enjoy the food and meet people.

I can say that this travel in San Diego Hillcrest Area is wonderful. The author or traveler has a good taste in traveling. The pictures are unique and there are lots of information that you can get. What a great help for travelers.

Accommodation is very important when traveling so finding good hotels to stay is what we are worried about but I'm glad that I found lots of information about hotels, lodges, resorts, etc.

Korean Money

Korea has four types of coins, the 10 won, 50 won, 100 won and 500 won. They symbols of Korea on them such as the crane, admiral Yi Sun-sin, an ear of rice, and the Dabotap (a pagoda in Bulguksa, a Silla era temple in Gyeongju).

There are also four types of bills, 1000 won ($0.83), 5000 won ($4.1), 10,000 won ($8.3)and 50,000 won ($41.6). On them, you will find the creator of Hangeul named King Sejong and the Jeoson era Confucian scholas, Yi I and Yi Hwang.

In addition to cash, Koreans frequently use bank checks and credit cards. People usually use credit cards even when they buy a small amount of thing. Koreans don't usually bring cash.

In Korea, you may ride the subway or a bus for 1,000 won within the same city. No matter how far or near your destination is, you just pay the same amount of money. About 10,000 won allows you and a friend to enjoy lunch or have some coffee.

Public transportation (bus, subway, taxi) is relatively cheap but housing and education are very expensive. The prices of the houses depends on the location or city. Housings in Seoul (Korean capital city), are expensive which makes it very difficult for young married couples to afford places to live. There are lots or apartment building in Korea because most people prefer to live in an apartment than in Korean traditional houses. Living in an apartment is more comfortable and warmer in winter.