Monday, March 30, 2009

Seoul Night Life

I am sure that many people have been waiting for this post. Well here it is and away we go. On Saturday night Lt and I were invited out on the town with some of our new friends. One of the Canadian girls we met was leaving in less than a week and her friends wanted to send her off right. It was a group of nine of us to start and we all met up a restaurant near our apartment. Super convenient. We met some new faces and had a nice meal. It was the same kind of restaurant we had mentioned before with the grill in the middle of the table and everything. Once we filled up on food we went back to Tidus' apartment to begin the pregaming, which is really popular here in Korea. Party lingo definition number one: Pregaming for those who don't know is when you buy some cheap drinks before you go out so you don't end up spending all your Won at the bar. I know pretty smart. I would be surprised if more than a few of you had no idea of what I was talking about. Anyway, we drank some beer and had a little soju. We played a drinking game and listened to some music. It was fun getting to see everyone's personalities start coming out. After a little while we decided to hit the road and head to Hungdae. It was around 10pm by the time we left. We walked to the bus stop and got right on. The timing was perfect. We took the bus to Donong Station and then proceeded to wait for 20 minutes for the stupid subway. For some reason that subway line only has two trains that go back and forth, not really but it might as well have been. We immediately regretting not bringing any roadies at this point. Party lingo definition number two: Roadies are drinks you bring with on the "road" so you can one, keep pregaming (see above) and two, keep the buzz. So there we were just waiting and finally the train pulled into the station. We then hopped on and continued our adventure. We were on the train for about five minutes when someone reminded us all that they had brought a small bottle of soju. So I was obviously excited, but no one else was. What the heck, here I was all pumped and no one else seemed to care. I could only guess that because all but Tidus and I were all women. They all said they wanted something to mix with it. So I then said pass it here and took a guzzle or two. I offered some to a nice man on the train but he said no but smiled. He held up two fingers and laughed. We didn't know if he wanted two shots or what. But he passed on it just like everyone else. Oh ya, drinking in public is totally legal and people here do it all the time, so no big deal. Just in case anyone was worried about it. After one transfer and 11 more stops we finally arrived in Hungdae. We met some other people who had been waiting for us for awhile. We went to this Canadian bar called the Rocky Mountain Tavern. It had live music and was a little crowded but we seemed to find seats for all 16 of us. We squeezed into a booth and brought some more tables over to complete our entourage corner. I went to the bar and grabbed a few pitchers of Hite, for a mere 9000 Won each, which is about $6 American. Not too bad for a bar. We drank a few pitchers and then decided to hit the club. By the time we got to the club it was about 1am. It was crowded with people wall to wall. The music wasn't bad, it was a good mix, just like back home, for the most part. They over played Low by Flo'Rida, but whatever. We continue to get some drinks at the club and it was a good thing I still had some soju left over from before. I just added a little to our drinks and we were in business. Of course Lt and I were tearing it up. I was working my moves for the Koreans and they loved it. We must have danced for about 4 hours or so, by the time we decided to leave it was around after 5am. I know I was certainly all sweaty from the dancing so it was nice to get back out into the cool air. After the club were introduced to the best after the club munchies. It's called Mandu, and it's served on the side of the street from a little cart propped out of a pickup truck. They are similar to pot stickers but round. Basically we were eating little pieces of heaven. There's nothing like delicious munchies served of the street corner after a long night of dancing. Since it was another half hour before the subway opened back up, we decided just to split a cab. It super cheap and we made it hope safely around 6am. We crashed out pretty quick. I had to wake up a 9am to do my fantasy baseball draft. But after that I was back to bed. Or first crazy Seoul party night was a success. We had some much fun. We met some really cool people and got a feel of how to do Seoul style.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Good Morning today we woke up to it snowing. As a child when it snowed it Palmdale it meant a snow day but as an adult in Korea it means work day. Today is one of those days when you miss California's winters. My co teachers said it usually doesn't snow this late in the year I chalk it up to global warning ;)

Korean Windows

Today was my first day teaching the teachers. The day started off without a hitch. I woke up two minutes early to make sure my lesson plan was in order and had Daniel proofread my plans. I got to school around 8:35. As I ran up the stairs I realized I forgot to send my lesson plan to my email so I could have Michelle print it out and make copies. Not to worry I brought our laptop just in case I ran into any problems. I borrowed Michelle’s USB drive to save my lesson plan. After about ten minutes of trying to figure out where the “save as” option on window’s XP 2007, I finally found it. Then I saved my lesson plan on the USB drive and took it over to Michelle’s desk so she could print it. She was busy getting ready for class and said she would print out the lesson plan after lunch. At home, I would I have taken care of this myself or made other arrangements to prepare for the class. Since I’m in Korea, the computer software is in Korean and it makes using Microsoft Word extremely difficult so I had to wait. All morning long, I had this weird feeling in my stomach that something was wrong but I didn’t have the time or resources to do anything. At 12:20, lunch time finally came and I hurried and ate my food while everyone was taking their sweet time. I mentioned to Michelle that I still needed to print out my lesson plan she tells me Oh! I forgot to tell you the teacher’s English class has been moved up from to 2:00 to 1:20. Sheer panic takes over my body… Seriously what are you suppose to say to that but I just smiled and responded with ok! I look at the time and it is 12:50 I have 30 minutes to print and make copies which is a good amount of time. At 12:55, we finally make it back to the English classroom and Michelle tried to open my lesson plan. She pulls up the file and because our laptop has a different version of windows, it’s not compatible with Korean edition of windows on the work computers.
Michelle suggested we go to the staff lounge and print out the lesson plan. But still the file would not come up. I tried to install the work printer to the laptop, but it too did not work. Of course the instructions would be in Korean. Just then I remembered I sent Michelle a copy of an old lesson plan I was going to use before. I was able to pull up the document from my email and display it on the electronic blackboard/ 90” T.V. in the classroom. With two minutes to spare I waited for the 5 teachers to show up which included 3 teachers and my 2 co teachers…lol. There was a school assembly at 1:20 and with the time change several teachers were unable to make it. The class is supposed to have 15 teachers. The first class was about getting acquainted and introducing themselves to others. It was fairly easy because I did not know the level of the teacher’s English skills. I had them say, hi what’s your name, what do like to do for fun, etc. The class seemed too easy for the teachers so I made some last minute adjustments. We sat around in a small group. I asked them basic questions about themselves. The class was a success. Once I got going I had a good time and felt comfortable. At the end I asked them if there was anything specific they wanted to learn. They said they mainly wanted to practice their conversation skills. Next class I will pick a topic and we will sit around and discuss it. It’s my dream job, sitting around talking to people and getting paid for it.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Yellow Dust

On my way to work I notice everyone is walking around Namyangju with these white surgical masks around their noses and mouths. My co teacher Michelle says Latanya you need to get a mask cause yellow dust is here and it's really bad for your health. I look out the window expecting to see yellow dust flowing in the wind, the sky just looks like the Santa Ana winds have picked up but nothing out of the ordinary. So I go home and wikipedia yellow dust now I'm convinced that everything I touch has yellow dust on it. Yellow dust is a dust originates in the deserts of Mongolia and northern China and Kazakhstan where high-speed surface winds and intense dust storms kick up dense clouds of fine, dry soil particles. These clouds are then carried eastward by prevailing winds and pass over China, North and South Korea, and Japan, as well as parts of the Russian Far East. Sometimes, the airborne particulates in significant concentrations which affect air quality. So I drag Daniel to Emart to buy some masks as soon as we leave the store I put on my white surgical mask and I am being so dramatic because wikipedia convinced me that yellow dust is going to kill us. and how I can't breathe because I inhaled the yellow He just looks at me like I'm crazy but I keep going on because I'm a yellow dust expert.

Dos Tacos

This weekend Dan and Tan went on another adventure. We ended up in Hongdae which is an area in west Seoul that is known for its college atmosphere, clubs, bars, restaurants, shopping, and foreigners. (Think Melrose ave. in L.A. meets Haight and Ashbury in San Fran…I seriously forgot I was in Korea). There were some many things I wanted to buy but I was responsible and decided to save my money on something more worthwhile like food. Walking down the street, in between a Subway restaurant and amongst all the Korean signs was DOS TACOS (translation two tacos). We both stopped in our tracks and practically ran into the restaurant, Mexican food in Korea this must have been our lucky day. We looked at the menu and were quickly reminded we were still in Korea by the food was written in Korean with small subtitles in English. Dan ordered a meat and rice burrito with a negra modelo and I ordered 2 beef tacos with a lime margarita. Our food came out and we sat there for a minute cause we weren’t sure what to expect, the food looked like any other taco or burrito so we dug in. Delicious! It tasted like a taco but it was missing the spiciness a few jalapeños would have given it a kick still it was really good. Dan enjoyed his burrito and the hot sauce; he agreed with me that it was lacking an ingredient. After our lunch, we walked around Hongdae for a while but not to long because I wasn’t feeling good. Hongdae is a place we will definitely visit again and I'm sure there will be more stories to share.


Friday, March 20, 2009

St. Paddy's Day

So on Tuesday Latanya and I were in full force celebrating St Patrick's Day. We went to school wearing green and explained the holiday to our co-teachers. It seemed that no one had any idea what in the heck we were talking about. It seems that the people closer to Seoul know more about the holiday than people on the outskirts.
It's been a two year tradition of Lt's and mine to cook traditional Irish food on St. Paddy's Day, and have some Guinness or other Irish brews. We met after work and went to the local butcher to pick out some corned beef. We then realized we were not entirely sure what corned beef actually looked liked. We have bought it several times before at home, but there was always a sign that said corned beef. I thought that it's a little stringy so we made our best guess. We chose a cut and got 600 grams worth, whatever that means and were on our way (sorry, still trying to figure out the conversion).
Next we had to pick up some Guinness. We made sure to make a stop at the local Family Mart right across the street from our apartment. Family Mart is similar to any convenience store in the states, it's open 24 hours. So if we ever have a late night craving or run out of Beer or Soju we know we will always be able to go across the street to get more. Once we picked up the brew we headed home.
We already had cabbage, bacon, mustard, butter, and potatoes from our shopping the day before. We were unable to find horseradish so we had to do without. Latanya started to cook and I helped a little bit. From then on it got a little interesting. First off the strips of bacon we thought we bought was not really bacon at all. We actually cannot confirm it's true meat family at this point in time. All we know is that when we put it in the pan the strips started to turn white and hardened. The meat did not shrivel up or turn dark in any sort of way. So we decided to toss the mystery meat and make do without; even though cabbage without bacon is just not the same.
Next item of non-Irish authenticity, we started to cook the meat and it began to cook just like a regular cut of beef. The stringiness that we thought we saw in the cut was all of a sudden non existent. It looked like small pieces of filet in the wok. Since they looked like good cuts of beef we seasoned it with our Outback seasonings, delish.
We then found out the mustard we bought was not like regular yellow mustard but honey mustard instead, boo. Lacking flavor and spice (without mustard and/or horseradish), Latanya made an executive decision. She decided to add curry powder. It was the greatest idea ever. I know many people know I love curry, any if you don't, you know now. So adding curry made me so excited. The traditional Irish meal we set out to make ended up being a most delicious combination of Indian, Australian (really American) and Irish food. I was in heaven. I had some of my favorites; meat, potatoes, curry and beer.
Once the cabbage was done we served it up and set the table....Oh wait, we still don't have a table. Our only other option was to set it all up on the ground. But all was O.K. because our Guinness was cold and our chopsticks were ready. Chopsticks? Yeah you read it right, chopsticks. What could be more Irish than chopsticks. Well, we don't have any forks so we were left with our chopsticks, which just added yet another culture into the mix. We sat down, legs crossed and dug in.
Latanya was worried it was not going to taste good. She worried for no reason because it was delicious. I ate every last bite. I think she was just aiming for our usual St. Paddy's Day feast. It was a new take for the holiday and a success. We did not have too much to drink because we had school the next day. I know not the usual St. Paddy's Day for us. But it was one to remember for sure. 2009 St. Patrick's Day the year of the Indian/Australian (really American)/Korean/Irish combo. Cheers!!!
Dan N Tan

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Changdeokgung Palace

Dan and I needed to regroup from being stood up the night before. So on Sunday morning, I was sent an email from an expat group that I signed up with, the group posts events on a website of what is going on in Korea. At first we debated on whether or not to head into Seoul because we didn't have any Korean Won. The night before we went to just about every ATM machine in Namyangju and they would not let us withdraw money with our card. So we decided what the heck let's be adventurous and meet up with the group at the Changdeokgung Palace (I figured the palace was a tourist spot and they would accept credit cards). We hopped on the bus, Dan was in charge of getting us to the location and I was in charge of remembering the location of where the group was meeting. Two minutes into the bus ride of course I forgot where we were suppose to meet the group. Luckily every subway station has a list of tourist spots and directions on how to get there. We hopped on the on subway in route to transferring to another subway we found an ATM machine that took our card...yah!!! As we made our way to the Changdeokgung Palace I was on the lookout for the expat group, a couple people stood out but I wasn't sure. Since the tour was in English Dan figured we would eventually meet up with the group, so no need to go introducing ourselves to everyone. With our fresh stack of Won we bought our tickets and waited for the tour to begin. A little info about the palace it was the favored palace of many kings during the Joseon Dynasty and retained many Korean elements dating from the Three Kingdoms of Korea period that were not incorporated in the more formalistic Gyeongbokgung. One such element is the fact that the buildings of Changdeokgung blend with the topography of the site instead of imposing upon nature. The tour was very informative and we got to spend a few hours learning about Korean history. Along the tour, I tried to see if I could find some members from the expat group but I didn't have any luck because there were so many people. All in all we had a nice day in Seoul and got to spent some quality time together. Dan especially liked it because we got to learn some Korean history by actually seeing history with our own eyes.


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Stood Up!!!

So on Saturday we were so excited to be going out on the town. In the city that is, the Seoul Night Life!!! Whoa!!! But not so fast. Our new friend we had met two days prior left us standing on the street corner for a half hour in the freezing cold, and never showed up. Boo!!!
We had originally settled on a time and place to meet on Saturday evening, in front of Pizza Hut at 7pm. Sounds simple right, well we guess not. We thought oh, maybe there was another Pizza Hut in our area but then thought that this could not be the case, because we were only a 3 minute walk from our apartment. So we waited and waited and it was sooooo cold. It was not the temperature that got us but the wind was blowing so hard, making it freezing. We kept wondering what could have kept him so long and not coming at all. After a half hour we had enough and went back home to our warm apartment and made our own party, playing Uno and drinking beer. What a Saturday night.
We found out two days later via email that our so called new friend had lost his phone and was tied up because he lost his cell phone. Whatever, lame. So as Courtney would say he is Diced!!! And for everyone else, he is cut, 86ed or whatever. He said sorry and that was that. So much for date two. I think we were too eager and too desperate, lol. The weekend was not lost though.
On Saturday morning, Lt and I had breakfast with some foreign teachers who live in our neighborhood. Latanya got in touch with a girl named Amy through her co-teacher at school. They talked briefly and made a date for Saturday morning where a few of them usually get together for breakfast. The place is called Park Avenue, they serve waffles and egg croissant sandwiches among other items. It was good, I had the sandwich.
We walked in and met Amy and her friend Delaney. Later a guy joined us named Tidus. The girls are from Canada, about four hours out of Toronto. And Tidus is from Nebraska. They were really nice it was good to chat with them. They said they would be more than willing to help us adjust to living in the area if we needed. Amy is leaving in a couple of weeks though. They are throwing a party for her soon, we are invited. We will make sure that, that experience goes better than our last one.
Talk about a small world my friend Jared who I had studied abroad with was partying in Seoul on Saturday. During the St. Patrick's Day celebrations his friend took some pictures. In his photo album, that I saw online there in the crowd was Amy and Tidus. They don't know one another at all. Crazy I know. Well we definitely should have hungout with them on Saturday.
On Sunday we took a day trip into the city to see one of the five main palaces of the Joseon Dynasty. That story will soon follow so please stay tuned.
Dan N Tan

Thursday, March 12, 2009

We Made A Friend!!!

Yesterday Latanya was walking home and she ran into another foreign teacher that lives in our area. She was so excited and did not know whether to approach him or not. Well she did and they started to talk. I met up with them shortly afterwards, because they were talking on my route home. His name is A.J. and we all hit it off immediately. He is from San Antonio, Texas and had just moved to our area on Monday. He told us that he has been in South Korea for a year now. He previously worked at a school further outside of Seoul. He was just as happy to meet us as we were to meet him. He is 25 years old, the same as me, whop whop, it's all about 1983. What a Year!!! We talked for about a half hour on the street corner exchanging e-mails and just plain getting to know one another.
We then walked towards our home and realized he lived just a two minute walk away from our apartment. He wanted to know if we had any plans for dinner. Seriously, I felt like we were being asked out on a date. Funny I know. We were all excited and didn't want to seem too eager. I am sure most of you girls know the feeling of being asked out by someone you really want to date, well this was the same felling. So we said yes, Lt and I wanted to dine out so bad, but we hadn't built up the courage yet. This was a perfect way to try something new. So then he said that the fried chicken in Korea was delicious, which, it totally looks. So we decided to get some chicken and beer.
After walking around for ten minutes or so we decided on a place. It was a restaurant just next door to our apartment. It had opened recently. We walked in and were welcomed and sat down and attempted to read the menu, which was obviously all in Korean (with hardly any pictures, boo). The waitress understood some English and we all ordered beer and fried chicken. We waited for about thirty minutes for the food, but we didn't even notice because we were having such good conversation. We literally talked for hours. We talked about why we were in Korea and what we thought about the U.S. economy. We updated him on the still horrible reality of finding jobs back home. He said that was the main reason he left home, because he recently had graduated from college and could not find a job. Well we made sure to let him know the situation has not changed. I think that's why he was staying in Korea for another year. We talked about all sorts of topics like, politics, Korean culture versus American culture and so forth.
So after three hours of dinner talk the night was getting late and we decided to get going. But before we parted ways with our new friend we made plans for Saturday. He invited us to a birthday bash in Seoul for another foreign teacher. We accepted and he was happy because everyone going was bringing another friend and he was able to bring two now, instead of none. It felt as if we clinched a second date. We said our good byes and went home, which took only thirty seconds to walk.
Also on another note: I had talked to a friend of mine that I studied abroad with just a couple of weeks ago. He told me that another buddy we had known from our time in Berlin was in Korea now as well. His name is Jared and I contacted him. We are trying to get together hopefully this weekend, or at least for St. Patrick's Day. We are excited to meet some new people and party it up Seoul style. We will definitely have some updates from the weekend, for it's going to be a long one. Also one last comment: Latanya is having her welcome dinner with her school tonight. I know it's going to end with her singing some karaoke. I told her she should sing Don't Stop Believing by Journey (a classic). Or maybe some old school N'Sync. I know she knows all the words. Lol. Well wish her luck because I just know it's going to take a lot of Soju and beer to get her up on stage.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Latanya makes dinner

After days of peanut butter sandwiches and rice I finally decided to switch things up. Today I saw an advertisement for Dominioes pizza at school with my mouth watering I thought we should get pizza tonight. Before I do anything in Korea I research because with the language barrier I wanna make sure I'm getting what I order. While looking for the Korean website I came across a blog from a foreigner about Korean Dominoes Pizza his comment read: I always thought pizza is pizza. Pizza from Korea can’t be that much different from pizza in the USA, right? Boy, was I wrong. So, I finally find the website and from looking at the pizza's they looked a little too festive for my taste. We usually eat a simple peperoni, mushroom, and green pepper pizza. Myuang saw the look on my face and suggested I try Pizza Hut so we researched the Pizza Hut website. I found pizza's similar to home and felt a lot better. I told Myuang what kind a pizza I wanted and she wrote it in Korean (she is my favorite person).
After school I met Daniel and we walked to Pizza Hut and it's a full service restaurant we say we would the pizza to go. The server takes us to the back of the restaurant to order and I pulled out my order in Korean and we were good to go. After 12 minutes of waiting, the pizza maker who barely speaks English says to us "Problem" (that's not something you want to hear from someone making your food). He led me to the expo window and showed me the pizza. The pizza had a big air bubble but it looked completely edible so I offered to take the pizza. He says, No done in five minutes. Daniel and I waited and talked about our days. While waiting the server offered us a sprite and a coke...the coke in Korea is so refreshing and crisp way better than at home. Our pizza is finally ready and the server wraps the pizza box with a red bow and send us on our way.
Daniel and I practically run home to taste the pizza. As soon as we get home we change into our pizza eating gear, open the box, and stare at the pizza with pure amazement. We take our first bites and there is complete silence. The pizza was absolutely delicious it tastes similar to the pizza at home minus the salt, grease, and the slices are smaller. After all the anticipation we had two slices and were stuffed. Glad to a have a reminder of home for a couple of minutes it made our day.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Taking over Pangok Elementary

Pangok domination!!! Today Michelle brought it to my attention that employees regular teaching hours are 22 hours a week and I am working 21 hours. She asked me if I had any ideas of how to make up that hour I didn't because there are so many rules on teaching in Korea that I didn't even want to guess. She suggested I teach English to the teachers at the school to make up the extra hour(I think it was her plan all along). The teachers at my school probably speak English well but they are afraid to speak to a native speaker. From what I have read Koreans strive to be perfect at everything they do and if they are not perfect at something they are scared to try. I think Wednesday will be my first day teaching the focus of my class will be everyday English: basic introductions (Hi!, How are you?), talking on the phone, talking to friends, going to a restaurant, shopping, etc. Michelle also gave me the option of working overtime by creating an after school ESL program for the students. I love planning things so this will be right up my alley. I would be working an extra four hours a week from 3:00- 5:00 but I'm at school until 4:40 anyway so I might as well do something and get paid for it. The after school programs won't start until April so I will keep you posted. What I have learned so far is Native Speaker + Korea= $$$$$


Sunday, March 8, 2009

Sightseeing part 2

Our next task was finding the entrance to the place. We walked alongside the mountain, passed a botanical garden and arrived at one entrance. It only took twenty minutes of walking and constantly second guessing which direction was right. At the entrance we found a map of the grounds and saw the different roads leading to the tower. I had pointed out that there was a cable car that led up to the tower. On the map it showed the cable cars around a bend of the mountain, or there was a trail that led to it up and over a hill. So we chose the trail to save some time.
Once we got to the top of the trail we could see the cables for the cable car. We also found a restaurant and stopped to get a bit to eat. We were so hungry at this point. It was about 11am now, and our breakfast was only enough fuel to get us this far. Latanya ordered a beef stew and I got a pork tenderloin. Her stew was good but she did not like the meat. I ate all of my pork and then some. We also made sure to fill up on rice and some Kimchi.
Now that we were refueled we looked to see how far the cable car was. It was still about a thirty minute walk away. We saw another trail that led up the mountain. We made the executive decision to climb up (what were we thinking?).
The trail consisted of steps and different platforms for picturesque views. As we climbed step after step our legs began to burn and we realized this was going to be a climb. The stairs felt never ending. It made my climb up to Neuschwanstein in Germany look like an ant hill. While climbing we started to see the expansive city below. We started to get higher than any other building in Seoul then higher than most mountains and hills in the near vicinity. I could swear the air got thinner and colder. The stairs kept going and going… our legs still burning. We were being passed by local Koreans out for a Saturday walk and old Korean men, who looked to be about 90 years old. We still saw the tower in the distance. We kept going and fought off the pain.
After a forty minute hike we arrived at the cable car drop off point only to discover more steps to climb. Luckily it was not too much longer until we reached the tower. We bought tickets to go up to the observatory. We then walked in and took an elevator ride up to see a 360 degree panoramic view of Seoul. It was a hazy and kind of smoggy day, but we were still able to see pretty far. On each window they had city names and the distances to each city from our location. Each window was pointing in the direction of the cities listed on the window. We found the window with LA and took a picture in front of it. We also saw where we had walked from. We saw that from the level of the river where we started to the top of the mountain was too high of a climb for any human being. We felt liked we accomplished something grand. Not too many people can say they hiked from the Han river to the top of the N Seoul Tower.
After plenty of pictures we made our way back down the tower. We had some French fries in the food court and went outside to start our long journey back to Itaewon. Latanya found another road that had buses and we began our walk down the enormous Namsan mountain. After walking down the road for awhile we found the botanical garden we saw earlier and followed it down. We made our way to the main road and kept walking to find a new way down the Korean Hollywood hills. Our new way consisted of less windiness and more stairs with a nicer path.
We arrived back in Itaewon and we found the main strip. There were so many foreigners on the streets we did not know what to do. We wanted to say hi to them but no one seemed interested in saying hi to us. For them, they all see each other every day. For us, there aren't any foreigners really in our neighborhood. So we just walked amongst them and saw all the big American chains such as; McDonald's, Burger King, KFC, Cold Stone, Coffee Bean, Starbucks, and of course Outback Steakhouse. It was our second citing of Outback. We knew there were a lot in Seoul and were not surprised to see one in Itaewon.
Itaewon today is a foreigner hot spot. It's located near the American military base. Itaewon used to be Seoul's red light district but has now been cleaned up and made into a happening district. We certainly grew found of it because of all the western amenities. Most everything was in English and most everyone was speaking English. This district cooled down our culture shock not so much for me but for Latanya. After walking around for awhile we made our way to the Itaewon subway stop and headed for home. It took two transfers and many stops and we were at good old Donong. We hopped on the 165, not the 165 dash something else. We then walked home from E-Mart to find our last steps of the day to our flat. Boy, were we exhausted. Our legs were still burning and our bodies were tired. We got home around 5pm and considered it a full Saturday. It was definitely a little different than our leisure Saturday stroll that we had originally planned. But we had a great time none the less. We marked off our first tourist site visited and will welcome the next one to come.

Sightseeing part 1

Yesterday, Latanya and I decided to take a Saturday trip into to Seoul and see some sites. Latanya left it up to me to pick our destination. I wanted to see Itaewon, and then go to the N Seoul Tower. Itaewon is a district full of western amenities and the N Seoul Tower is just like any large needle in the sky, it is in the geographic center of the city with gorgeous panoramic views. We woke up at the same time we normally do to go to work at about 7am (Dad now I know why you still wake up yearly on the weekends). We took our time getting ready and I mapped out our route, which included our bus to the subway and then our walking trail. Let me first say just like any map the distance between anything appears to be closer than they are. Also, the geography of the mountainous terrain in Seoul appeared to be smaller on the map than in reality, which we would soon find out.
By the time we left it was about 9am made our way to E-Mart and hopped on the bus 165. {A quick side note: The other day we were at our normal subway station Donong and we attempted to take our bus home when Lt's co-teacher neglected to tell us, that the bus 165-3 was not the same as the 165. Logically, I thought that it would eventually branch on to another route. But I thought that it would do that after our stop. This was not the case and we ended up practically in North Korea. We got off and grabbed a taxi back home. So from now on we know only to take the 165 without any dashes. }
The bus arrived after a few minutes. We took it to our subway stop, which was about 10 minutes or so of a ride. Once at Donong station we hopped on to our train, now with a T-Money card . The T-Money card is used for the Seoul's public transportation. It's good for the subway and buses. Basically you add as much money to it as you want and swipe it either when you enter the bus or the subway station. And as you exit either one you swipe it again and it subtracts a certain amount of money, depending on the distance of your trip as well as the amount transfers you made. The card makes traveling so much more efficient and less stressful, at least for us.
Our subway line kind of took us where we wanted to go. It was a twenty five minute ride from our station to Hannam station. Hannam is located near the Han river and just south of the area we wanted to see, Itaewon. Our map does not have every street on it and provides only a basic over view of the city, with little landmarks pointed out. So with my great sense of direction we began to make our way.
In the direction we were going there were numerous homes and buildings nestled into the mountainous landscape. It reminded us of San Fran. Well knowing that we were headed in the right direction we began climbing the hills. As we were making our way we heard people talking in English and were suddenly feeling a little happier. We finally made it up our first big hill, which took about 15 minutes or so. Once at the top we saw the Itaewon Hotel, and we knew we had arrived at our first destination. Latanya saw some signs in English and was relieved. We saw all sorts of non Korean restaurants, such as, Italian, Chinese, Japanese, French and many American chains. We made the decision to make our way towards the N Seoul Tower which was my main objective on the day. After the tower we would come back and take a stroll through the district.
From our vantage point we could not see the tower but I knew the general direction. With no signs for the tower we chose a worthy street and started another incline. We zigged and zagged up different streets hoping to arrive at the top soon. The incline became steeper and the houses much nicer. It was like climbing the Hollywood hills. Every house was big, built into the hillside and had primo security. The cars that drove by were all luxury. Typically the average Korean drives a Hyundai, Daewoo, or Kia but all the cars we were seeing were BMW, Mercedes or Lexus.
After walking up the steep Korean Hollywood hills we made it to a plateau where we saw the Grand Hyatt hotel. This was good to see because from the train station earlier we were able to see the Hyatt and knew the tower was in the distance behind it. We kept walking and arrived at yet another hillside, except this one was all forest. The hillside was no longer a hillside instead it was the Namsan mountain home to the N Seoul Tower.

Saturday, March 7, 2009


Hello everyone,
We have made available the option to leave comments. Just scroll to the bottom of each post and click comment. It's made available to followers only, so it's a pretty exclusive option. All you non followers that are not signed up, better join or no one will know your opinion. We can't wait to here what you all have say.
Dan N Tan

Friday, March 6, 2009

Korean apartment pictures

Picture1&2: Our Building in Hopyeong Dong
Picture 3: The stairway
Picture 4: Key less entry
Picture 5: Foyer
Picture 6: Kitchen
Picture 7,8,9: Dining and Living Room with fridge
Picture 10: Heated Floor
Picture 11,12: Bathroom... yes that's the shower
Picture 13,14: Laundry room
Picture 15: Dryer
Picture 16: Master Bedroom (Right), Office (Left)
Picture 17: The office/ spare bedroom
Picture 18: Wallpaper
Picture 19: Walk in
Picture 20, 21: Race car bed
Picture 22,23,24: View 1,2,3
Picture 25: Window to cover up the view

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Try finding this 병원...Our Hospital Trip

As for our trip to the Hospital we were given directions to go into the city by ourselves, and to pick up our results from our physical. Well one would think it wouldn't be too hard to go back to a place we were before. However, we were driven there the first time, and this time we were taking public transportation, by ourselves.
We were told to meet each other at a common area between both of our schools. We had not talked to one another about it we just knew we had to find one another. The map I was given was clearly incorrect because I was waiting on a corner across from the station where I was told I would find an E-Mart, for twenty minutes. There was a chill in the air and I knew it was the wrong place, but knew if I would start walking around that Latanya would come by and I would miss her. So without a cell phone or any other communication other than my voice, I stood there patiently. I was practicing my Korean by repeating the name of the station over and over aloud (this would turn out to be helpful later). So after my waiting for twenty minutes I see Latanya in her purple coat waving at me across the street.
We meet up and she shows me where she was waiting in front of the E-Mart which just so happens to be a block away from where my poorly drawn map had shown. She had instructions for our journey to the hospital. We hopped into a cab and showed the driver the station that was written down on Lt's paper. He dropped us off at Donong station where we were to get on the subway.
It was our next situation when I thought a conversation Lt and I had once. Latanya once asked me if I would choose her to be my partner on the Amazing Race. It was for the this situation following that I would most certainly not have her as a partner. We walked into the station and approached the foreign contraption Koreans call a ticket machine. We started to push buttons for English and we thought we were in business. Not so fast. In order to purchase a ticket we found out that you need to know where you will be getting off. That would be easy if the stations were in English not Korean as they were. Well we tried to match the symbols up but had no luck. We also could not figure out how to do round trip which it shows a button for but doesn't work. After five minutes of frustration Latanya throws her hands up and says I don't know. She continues to be flustered and me also confused and frustrated say I don't know either. We look at each other hoping the other had a great idea to get us out of our jam and nothing happens. As if we thought the tickets would magically come flying out of the machine or something. After another few minutes go by and more buttons are frustratingly pushed a nice old man came up to us and tried to help us but he himself was unable to figure it out. And then a teenager in a Detroit Tigers hat helped us. We showed him our destination on the paper and he pushed a bunch of buttons and then we inserted the money and the tickets came out. We were very grateful and relieved because we were on a time schedule which just put more pressure on us because this trip was only supposed to be an hour to and from. We were already pushing thirty minutes and we haven't even got on the subway yet.
Finally on the subway, once we discussed and figured out which platform to get on, we waited for ten minutes for the next train. We got on and we only needed to go two stops. The Korean subway was very clean and the ride really smooth. We got off and Latanya told me the next instructions which were to exit Gate 2 and find the main street. It was then when I repeated, find the main street. What in the hell is that suppose to mean. One: what qualifies as a main street? Two: what do we do when find the main street, left, right, straight??? And Three: Was the hospital even on the main street? We had no street name no address and no real direction. So we started off using our intuition and my good sense of bearings. It lead us to a street, but not nearly main enough, which lead us to a hospital. Lt was convinced it was the one we were at before. I was not. At closer glance it was not. We then asked a nice old lady where the hospital was and pointed to writing on the paper. She gestured, from what I translated to, go up this big ass hill and keep going until you hit the "Main Street" and make a left. Lol.
So we continued to hike, and hike. We finally found a large street which was "Main Street" eligible. We made a left and found the hospital. We went in side, showed them our paper and received our results. We both thought they could have very easily mailed us these stupid little papers to our schools. But whatever we got there with five minutes to spare before closing, and an hour and fifteen minutes into our hour trip.
We went back out on to the "Main Street" and hike down to the station. We bought our tickets with no help and with ease this time. We waited another ten minutes and got on our train and headed back to Donong station. We got off and looked at our paper to realize it did not have the return destination written down. AHHHHHH! So we confirmed Latanya's co-teacher does not give good directions. So we were panicking as we walked to the taxi line. And then I remembered the train station that I was repeating aloud earlier on the corner. So we approached the cabbie and I said in my best Korean accent, PyeongnaeHopyeong Station?? And he.........nodded yes and we were so relieved. We hopped in and made our way back to the E-Mart and then walked to Latanya's school where we met Michelle. After two hours of a one hour trip we finally made it. It was then she drove us to our apartment. Wow what a trip? So that the latest everyone.

Our New Apt

So first off, the Beyonce kid was hilarious.
Anyways, we finally got out of our one room motel/hotel. We moved into our new place two days ago and we love it. It's brand new, just built with the smell of fresh paint. We have new appliances and a small balcony. It's on the third floor so not too high of a climb. The building is rather small only a total of eight units. So no need for an elevator.
Our door has a key less entry. There is a little keypad for a code. Once you punch in the code a little jingle plays and in you go. When you go through the front door the first thing you see is a built in shelving unit, for coats and shoes. Turning to the left there is a little step up and suddenly you're in the living room. Connected to the living room is the bathroom on left; the balcony straight ahead; the two bedrooms are on the right hand side next one another. And the kitchen is behind you connected with the living room in the same open space. The refrigerator is on the opposite side of the kitchen counter next to the balcony. The living space is rather small but a good size for Korean standards.
The bathroom consists of a toilet, a sink, a medicine cabinet, and a shower head attached on the wall over the sink. It's the size of most people's closet. The shower shares the same floor as the toilet with one drain in the middle. Let's just say the whole room gets wet when you take a shower.
Our bedrooms were provided with a bed we had to put together. Every time we sit on it, it feels like it's going to break. Also, it's extremely hard. Apparently Koreans like the feeling of sleeping on the floor but higher up. It might as well be a piece of wood propped up on cinder blocks. Our backs are slowly adjusting to the stiffness of the mattress. The bed is also the size of those race car beds for kids, except with an modern adult style headboard. When we first lied down I was like, Latanya move to your side, and she said she already was. We both cracked up. Michelle, Latanya's co-teacher told us we should buy another one and push them together. Seriously it's the size of a twin but smaller. Well maybe not smaller but at least the same size, and for two people, C'mon.
In the other room there is a small free standing closet, a desk and a chair. And that was it. There is no other furniture in the apartment. We were like, where is everything else? Michelle said we had to buy any other furniture. We said that couldn't be right. It was supposed to be fully furnished. So the next day I talked to my co-teacher and she said they would buy us some more furniture and she would talk to me about it today. So we were relieved to hear that. As of right now all of our suite cases are all over the place because we have no where to store our stuff.
The other night once we moved in we went to E-Mart, which is there version of Wal-Mart. But think of Wal-Mart on steroids. You could compare Juan Pierre vs. A-Rod, A-Rod being E-Mart(Perfect Example). E-Mart is like a Super Target, a Macy's and an Ikea all rolled into one. It's five stories with escalators that can hold your carts and it has anything you could ever need. We just needed to get a few supplies like a pan, silverware and a few groceries. E-Mart is only a five minute walk away, so it's very convenient.
Our neighborhood is really up and coming. We have dozens of restaurants on our street alone. There are also many bars. I can't wait to try the local brew, non lite anyway. There is also a movie theatre near the E-Mart as well as more restaurants and clothing stores. Our neighborhood has everything we need, food, clothes, entertainment and beer. What more could we ask for (Michael: I'll make sure to scope out all the good bars for you when you fly out).
A trip into Seoul isn't that long. Maybe 25 to 30 minutes. We have to get on a bus and take it to the Subway and from there it goes straight into the metropolis. Are city of Namyangju is pretty big too, its population is over 500,000.

Beyonce eat your heart out

I get to school this morning and this little boy is following me. I introduce myself and use my English 1 introduction skills Hello! Name is Latanya. What's your name? Nice to meet you. Good bye. The boy answers my questions in perfect English but he looks confused when I tell him my name (I don't remember his name). I go into the teachers lounge and I am getting ready for class with Myuang and Michelle drinking my Korean coffee and there's a knock on the door. Here is the little boy again he asks me my name and I tell him Latanya but he still has a confused look on his face. Michelle says this is one of my six grade students and he couldn't wait to meet the new English teacher. In my head I'm thinking this is why the boy has been following me around school this morning. So at lunch Michelle tells me the little boy thought the new English teacher was Beyonce and wanted to meet I guess if I'm Beyonce Daniel's is Jay Z.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

After School Activities - Dan

So after school yesterday there was a party with the school faculty. We all left at 5pm and drove to a near by restaurant. The place had an open floor concept, with separate private rooms in the back. My school had reserved a room for all of us. There were about 30 people all together. The tables were low to the ground with pillows alongside. We all took our shoes and coats off and sat down. There were a few people already there and were cooking food already. In the center of each table was a round grill just like in the picture below. The servers brought uncooked meat and one person was in charge of the grilling. As the food became cooked each person took as they pleased. On the rest of the table there were other foods like Kimchi, salad and more Kimchi. There were also many dipping sauces for the meat. We ate grilled beef, pork, ribs and duck. Earlier in the day Grace had asked me if I ever had duck before and I said no. I had thought she said dog at first and was shocked to be asked that. After a few minutes of being on different pages I explained I heard dog not duck and she cracked up in laughter. She said there was no way she would ever eat dog, and I said good.
Anyways dinner was coming along nicely. I sat next to a man who wanted to practice his English and asked me several questions. The men all asked me if I wanted some Soju. Soju is a sweet potato vodka. I tried the cheap version and then the better stuff. It tasted like a sweet type of vodka. It was good and easy to drink. It's a Korean tradition when offering to take a shot with someone that the one who offers, hands there shot glass to the other person. Then they pour and the receiver takes the shot and then hands the glass back and fills it up again, and the other person takes a shot. It's a way showing respect and welcoming the other person. Next thing I knew I was being offered a few shots back to back to back. And towards the end of dinner I shared a shot with my principal and two with my vice principal. I just know that this would never happen back home. Everyone was so nice and I got to learn a lot about Korean culture. I talked to many teachers and I was asking Heather if this was an annual party. She responded with no they do it at least once a month. I was like, wow! Once a month! The dinner was completely informal even though the setting was rather formal. People talked and got along so well. The majority of the teachers at my school are in there twenties, so everyone is fairly young. It makes for a fun environment.
After dinner we all continued the party at a karaoke lounge. There karaoke lounges consist of different rooms you can rent out that have a karaoke machine, seating and a few tables in the middle. On one wall next the machine there was a giant flat screen to watch the words, with music videos in the background. When I got there the principal and vice principal were already going at it, with some Korean pop song. It was so funny how they got so into it. They told me to pick a song and get up there. I felt a little pressured but chose a song and grabbed the mic. I chose "Oh Darling" by the Beatles and started wailing. I was so good that the vice principal started a Daniel, Daniel, Daniel chant. LOL. I had so much fun. There was more Soju and beer to go around and this was all on a school night. The Soju was only about 13% alcohol and was equivalent to most wines. So when you take small shots it does not hit you as hard. But let's just say that it hit some harder than others.
My principal was a little wasted. He kept hugging me and saying thank you (he must have loved my signing). Heather later translated for him and he said I reminded him of his youngest daughter's situation. She is currently living in D.C. and working for the government or something. Regardless I just know that it's not too often you can have that kind of fun with your principal and co-teachers. The night was getting late and a few teachers drove me home where I found Latanya asleep. I was sorry that she missed all the fun because I know she would have loved it. Maybe next time.
Well as for today it's been normal. I did some teaching and Kate my other co-teacher used a song for her class to help with the English learning. It was "As Long as You Love Me" by the Backstreet Boys, classic 1997. It was certainly entertaining to hear the sound for four different classes three times each. I should have sang that song for karaoke. LOL. One more thing. I had this curry soup today at lunch. It was awesome, just add some rice and it was heaven in my mouth. Until next time.

Korean Food

I am one of the world's pickiest eaters besides my wonderful sister. I have tried some stuff in last two days that wouldn't even take a second glance at. Yesterday for lunch my principal, vice principal, two school administrators, and co teachers took me to lunch at a traditional Korean restaurant in Namyangju. We took our shoes off and sat Indian style at this long wooden table. The waitress brought out several little bowls of food it reminded me of buffet style dining. I was really scared looking at all the foreign food I bet I had this look on my face like what did I get myself into. Everyone kept suggesting I try something and I felt pressured to try I put on my best Karen Layne impression and said a little prayer: please God don't let me embarrass myself in front of my co workers and please...please let this food taste good. I did use a fork because my chopstick skills aren't the best. I loved everything I ate but don't ask me what I ordered cause I have no idea. My co workers were really pleased that I tried everything and thanked me for being so open to their culture.
Pangok elementary doesn't have a cafeteria on the basement floor there is a huge kitchen where the students parents and a chef cooks traditional Korea food everyday and delivers it to the students classroom. The staff has a teacher’s lounge where the teachers gather to eat. Today, my co teachers kept offering me food and the pressure was on. I'm 2-0 with Korean food it is so delicious I wish I could remember what I had (tomorrow I will take a notebook so I can write down what I eat). I used chopsticks and it wasn't bad at all. After lunch, a few science teachers got together with the ESL teachers for coffee and tea (at school the drinks aren't served with food). Korean coffee (yummy) this particular type is instant it comes in a long, medium, individual sized packet all you do is add hot water. The teachers kept asking me questions about my husband in my head I was thinking are they in love with him too but they haven't met


Monday, March 2, 2009

My First Two Days - Dan

Well after I was dropped off at my school, Baekbong Elementary, I was greeted by an assistant of the English program. Her name is Heather. She was the same one who met us at our hotel. She proceeded to bring me inside. I was nervous to a certain extent but surprisingly I was calm and cool. We first stepped inside and I had a little cube with my name on it and inside there were a pair of sandals. I slipped them on and we went up to the teacher's lounge. The school was filled with excited students, for it was the first day of there new school year. The teachers on the other hand were running around trying to prepare themselves for a hectic day. We walked into the lounge and I met some teachers and the faculty. I was then taken up stairs to the fifth floor and met my two co-teachers. They gave themselves English nicknames to make it easier for me to address them. One was Grace who I would be assisting most of the time. The other was Kate and it was her first day at the school as well as mine. She was as nervous as I was. After we met we went back down to the teacher's lounge and I met the Principal and Vice Principal. Just like Latanya, my Principal did not speak any English, so I had a translator. He asked me the same questions that Latanya was asked. It just so happened to be his first day as well at this school. After meeting them I was introduced to the rest of the faculty and stood up and bowed. A few minutes later the Vice Principal introduced all the new faces on there T.V. broadcasting show held in the next room. I got up on a podium and said a few words and introduced myself on the air. I was extremely calm for some reason. I know back home I dread public speaking but for some reason here I don't mind.
Next I was given a tour of the grounds and met some more people. Everyone was so inviting and pleasant. I was shown to my new desk and computer. Once lunch time came around my co-teachers and I went to the cafeteria and ate. That was an experience. Only the first and second graders eat there, as well as the teachers. All the other grades eat in there classrooms. Basically we grabbed a metal tray with five separate indentions in them. We picked up our silverware, which consisted of a metal spoon and metal chopsticks (good thing I am already a pro at using chopsticks). We then followed down the line and received our food one scoop at a time. Traditional Korean meals consist of three basic foods and then added courses like rice and noodles etc. The three main dishes are Kimchi, Soup and some sort of Meat. That day we had, cold Kimchi, a seaweed soup, white rice, a beef mixture with vegetables and an egg quiche, I think. It was all delish. It is also customary not to drink while eating. So once we were all done we poured out our unfinished food into a metal container, which looked like they recycle for compost or something. Then we put our trays and soup bowls away as well as the silverware. After that we proceeded to what looked to be a soft served ice cream dispenser but in reality was only a water cooler, hot and cold. The cups were right next to the despenser in a refrigerated shelving unit. After washing our meals down we whiped our faces with a napkin which were located next to the water.
After lunch Grace, Kate and I met with the P.E. teacher and the Art teacher and had coffee and tea. We chatted a little bit. They asked me some questions about myself and I to them. It was a nice relaxing time. Once our lunch period ended we all went back to our offices. Not too long after that I was summoned by Heather telling me that Latanya and Michelle were waiting down stairs for me to go to the hospital.
I greated both my wife and Michelle and we drove into Seoul for our physicals. The hospital was small. I think it was just a small clinic. We literally went in and out, no waiting at all. With the exception of me not filling my urine sample up enough, oops. The nurse called me back to try again so I had to drink a ton of water to get the urge again. The first time I had to go really bad so I had brilliant idea of peeing into the toilet and then moving the cup into the stream at about half way so I wouldn't over flow it. Well before I knew it I was almost done and only got a sprinkle. Well seven cups full of water later they got there sample. I know too much information, but a funny story none the less. They basically did a normal physical including a blood sample, the nurse was really good. I hardly felt a thing. After that Michelle drove us home and we went to get some munchies and watch some movies.
Today we were picked up at 8:00am again. Michelle dropped me off and I said goodbye to my lovely wife. I got to school, put my sandals on and went up to my fifth floor office. Grace and Kate soon followed in and we were soon going to our first class. Grace gave me a quick run down of our lesson for the day. She showed me our worksheet and let me know to basically follow her lead and help out where I could. The children soon flowed in and we were on our way. Grace sat them down boy girl boy girl. She introduced herself and then me. We asked the children if they had any questions. The most popular one of the day was how old I was. I don't know if they were shocked of how young I was or that I look much older than I am. Either way they all gasped at the notion. Other questions were, am I married, where do I come from, do I speak Korean and what's my favorite food? I was not surprised that when I said that Mexican food was my favorite, they all scratched there heads and had no idea what I was talking about. We had four different classes come in. We basically did a dialogue and gave them some vocabulary. There was a lot of speaking and repeating. In the later classes we started to ask questions about the dialogue. I was certainly impressed with some quick and accurate answers.
After the classes we went to lunch in the cafeteria. Ate similar food from the day before with a different soup and some paddies of some sort with ketchup. It was all really good. We all met for coffee and tea again, and discussed many different subjects. The P.E. teacher was telling me how he must enlist into the Army next year. It is mandatory for every male able to enlist for two years either after high school or college. He delayed his an extra year to start teaching.
Now I am just sitting at my desk writing on the blog. There is a after school staff party later. It sounds like it will be fun. Well I hope my first two days read as exciting as they have been.

First Day of School- Tan

It's 2 a.m. and I just can't sleep it's a combination of the time difference and nervousness (Daniel has the time difference down and is sleeping like a baby). I pass the time by watching movies and t.v. on Graboid which is like netflix on the internet. At 7 am, the alarm goes off and we start to get ready for the day...this experience feels like being 12 all over again on the first day of school. At 8am Michelle my co teacher from Pangok elementary picked us up and drove us to our schools. First, we dropped Daniel off to school it’s a bittersweet feeling because this is the first time in 3 years we will not be working together. Michelle then drives me to Pangok Elementary we are greeted by hundreds of laughing children who are excited to back on the first day of school and have a new English teacher.
Michelle introduced me to the principal and vice principal. The principal doesn't speak any English so Michelle translated the conversation for me...he asked me basic questions like what's my name?, what's my major?, and where I'm from? I met the vice principal who speaks a little English and is always cracking jokes. Michelle taught me how to greet the school administration and my colleagues. I have to do a slight head bow it's saying hello while showing respect and if I am sitting down when the principal or vice principal enters the room I have to stand up until they leave the room.
I also have another co teacher named Myang I will be working with her for the first semester teaching 3rd and 5th grade. She is really sweet and eager to learn more English. This year is the first year at Pangok with an ESL program along with my co teachers we will be setting up the program. Myang gave me all my teaching materials and showed me how to create a lesson plan I’m not sure how we will divide the teaching duties but that will come with time. The 3rd graders are at the beginning stages of learning English a lot of the work will be listening, repeating, and reading. As for the 5th graders they will be listening, repeating, reading, and writing. My official teaching debut will start next week for now I’m watching Myang.
Sidenote: The Korean girls can’t get enough of Daniel they think he is so cute. One girl asked him if he is a movie star and another one was sad to hear he is married. As for the school girls they are always waving at him and giggling…lol..I picked a winner ;)