Saturday, November 27, 2004

GetAmped is superior to Lineage.

I know now the name of what was the majority of my background music here yesterday and is today. Lineage, popular with Koreans of all ages. Or is it Lineage II? Either way apparently it's installed on every PC 방 computer around here. Although the kids next to me are playing a game called GetAmped. From the sounds of it they are having more fun playing that than everyone else playing Lineage combined.

Nowhere in the US can I remember ever seeing so many young, young kids running around the streets without adult supervision. It's great. Crime must not be a concern, despite the fact I've only seen 1 police car on patrol in over 2 days here. So peaceful.

Not that I expected to, but I did not see any evidence of the car plant workers on strike. And the equally unnewsworthy fact that I noticed today that Samsung and Renault have a partnership. I headed to a store with Samsung signs all over it looking to shops for electronics, only to notice large shiny new automobiles were parked inside.

I had a great lunch today with my coworker Jake and his wife (she will surely forgive me for forgetting her English name!). The main dish was ribs. It is served to you raw and you cook it in a little wok right in front of you. You are given some juice to dip the ribs in. And the side dishes! Wow, so many of them. So much food is served at a meal, and it is relatively cheap too. 김치 (spicy Korean cabbage that is served with just about every meal), radishes, spiced cucumbers, some kind of chili paste (I think!), potatoes... lettuce leaves, whole pieces of garlic (neither I nor my dining mates touched these), another dipping sauce, onions in sauce. All in seperate dishes. And I think I forgot a few. Most meals are served with less side dishes but you definitely would not go hungry eating here.

We were given a second course, rice and something else. Jake called it beans, his wife said the Korean name toju. With my brilliant abilities of deduction I figured out it was tofu (my brain slipped in realizing what it was as I never eat tofu). It was served in a kind of chili sauce. Then for dessert we were served fresh apples with the skin removed and a very good drink made from rice.

Before and during lunch we talked about work a bit. I was told thankfully the kids are just starting out on the books for most of the classes. I'll be teaching 5 classes a day with 2 to 9 kids per class, 3pm to 9pm. The reason I will work in the afternoon and evening is that my school is a private institute, the kids go there after public school for supplementary learning. Busy kids!Tuesday and Thursday from 8 til 9 I will be doing a phone check, calling the students at home. I assume I will ask them how their homework is going and have a short conversation about their day and whatnot. I probably would not have thought about this phone check part but it makes sense.

Stunning pictures will be forthcoming, I just haven't gotten a power converter yet (or felt the desire to mess around the back of one of these computers for the USB port in the PC 방). Explaining what I was doing to the inquiring Korean 방 owner wouldn't work too well due to the language barrier.

And that of course brings up another point: my skill with the Korean language is pretty slim at this point. Yes, I regret not knowing more of the language before I got here. No, it is not a huge problem. Yes, I'll do a language exchange once I get myself set here.

Yes, I like to ramble.

Yes, the kids are still thoroughly enjoying GetAmped next to me.

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