Sunday, June 21, 2009

continued!

see! i'm back! whoo hoo!

wednesday-everland. korean disney world-ish? more walking up & down mountains. who knew that korea isn't flat? if we didn't before, we do now! lots of rides & a huge roller coaster & lunch out of the cooler & feeding birds out of our hands & boo the monkey house was closed! probably because it was late & dinner time. baby rides & big rides & a helicycle thing that had no electricity-leg powered! which, isn't so great the day after a mountain climb. but we made it around. and we did the safari with lions & tigers & bears, oh my. and a water ride with rapids but ponchos on the boat so we didn't get much wet. except for where the water sloshed in anyway but then there were dryers at the end so you could dry off! yay korea! lots of junk food in the form of ice cream & churros. but that's what vacation is for, right? and home late at night for 1 & nallie to fall into bed as they had DMZ trip in the morning. i, however, had the day off!

(yes, yes, stay dry on the water ride! so fancy!)


thursday-nallie & 1 headed for the DMZ while i stayed home to hold down the fort. haha, get it? ok. i'm a dork. still recovering from tourist-zilla. they got up at some ridiculous hour to head for seoul to get on a bus. they said it was kind of creepy. there were some pictures. maybe i'll go someday. no kids allowed so it's been kind of difficult to get up there. possibly i could go alone since i'm all brave these days & stuff. the kids & i stayed home & hit the water park for a bit. still no stinkin baby pool. at this rate, i won't get to use it til next year! it was kinda quiet since after the water park, littlest & i came home for a nap & biggest & middlest went to hang out. and then everyone came home all at once & it got very loud. and then we all went to bed so we could get up & go again in the morning. see why i'm so tired?


(glad you two are taking this so seriously. but it does look rather like an amusement park, doesn't it?)

and finally friday. sigh. friday? already? GEEZ. friday was seoul day. we took the metro up and then climbed.another.mountain. this one was more like a hill. but sore calf & quads made it feel like a mountain. we at lunch at the base of the namsan cable car-more bibimbap except cold this time. seaweed. {{shudder}} except for that it wasn't bad. then cable car'd to the tower. same old, same old except this time with nallie! yay! went up in the tower & checked out the 360 degree view of seoul. still awesome. really? a city is THAT big? that may explain the traffic.... came down for some ice cream. the ground got mine as it jumped off the cone & onto my shirt before hitting bottom. people laughed. sigh. i got more ice cream. it was good. then onto a bus that was supposed to take us to the metro so we could go to cheongye stream-it's a riverwalk type thing. but no one listens to me & my stellar navigation skills so we ended up in an old people park where they played gate ball & some board game & slept on four wheelers. that's what i want to do when i grow up-sleep on a four wheeler in a park. then the boys found a little league park while the girls tried to figure out where the heck in street-sign-less korea we were. and of course we weren't where we meant to be. backtracked to a metro station & finally found the stream after some hot dogs & smoothies (most fruit is the english word written in hanguel. except strawberry. that is something like dalgi). walked down the stream/riverwalk and found a world refugee day thing at the end. that would feature angelina jolie that evening! or the next. we weren't quite sure. and lots of police. LOOOOOOOTTTTTTSSSS of police. geez. nallie & i decided that that night was a good night for the sauna. so we all got back on the metro & nallie & i got off at the next stop because we SWORE that's where the sauna was. except it wasn't? but it was where all the protesters were. hence the huge police presence. but apparently it wasn't an anti-american protest because then it would have been scarier. still not sure what they were protesting. wandered around and around and around the station trying to locate the missing sauna. FINALLY got talked into visiting the information desk. where the lightbulb went on! if you're looking for the DRAGON HILL SAUNA, you might want to check at the YONGSAN station (yongsan is dragon hill in korean...duh). that was nice. hopped back on the metro, found the sauna & then had some chinese food in korea-yum! nallie was all excited about "igo kogi" (no meat) cause she finally got to use it. it was good food. and then we headed for the sauna. yay! had a bath & then a scrub/massage with a helicopter moment & then checked out the whole ginormous sauna & met some lost koreans. americans showing the koreans how to sauna? huh? that was cool. found a sleeping room with some yos (flat floor mattresses) & little rectangular pillows. slept in a room full of strange women & woke up butt-crack of dawn to hop the metro again for pyeongtaek. took nallie to emart for some last minute stuff & then back on the train again. and that brings us back to the beginning of the first post.

(the only pic you'll get of the sauna. stolen from miss jet lag. did you really want to see nekkid old ladies?)

it was the fastest week ever. i miss having someone to play with. now it's back to the real world of work & laundry & summer reading books. there is something to look forward to, though. i won't get into that now. and if you already know, keep your mouth shut!

back to my real world before that baby of mine destroys something. she has just handed me a golf club & asked me to play. guess that's my hint.

banni-who tried to finish this post last night but then had to go out with 1 for father's day & then came home & fell asleep. who also thinks that while she will never be a full-fledged hiker, probably won't say no if asked to climb another mountain. once she recovers from this one, of course

fastest.week.EVER.

for realz.

so nallie was here. and by here, i mean, she was here for a week & then we rode a train for 3 1/2 hours & got to the airport & got her checked in & then she walked through the gate of no return & i rode a train back for 3 hours & i'm assuming by her facebook status update that she is finally home but apparently atlanta customs snagged her bag or something cause they are stupid. but we already knew that, being as how we are world travelers now or something. that would be one thing i DON'T miss about the states. stupidity. here things are weird or half-assed because they are & have been for 40 million years & there is no lateral thinking. there? things are stupid because they are & people are lazy & don't give a rat's ass. i don't miss it.

anyway. recap. sort of in a nutshell because who wants to read the longest post ever about someone else's vacation? hmm...maybe PEOPLE WHO NEED TO COME OVER HERE & EXPERIENCE IT FOR THEMSELVES? hint, hint aunt jo & uncle joey. and whomever else may like to see a little slice of asia. room is free, people!

saturday-train to the airport ALL BY MYSELF without getting lost. and dragged natalie out of the crush of not-round-eyes and stuck her on a bus for 3 hours to get home. and i was supposed to keep her awake on the trip as there is no time for jet lag on a 1-week-other-side-of-the-world-vaca but i kind of stink at staying awake on busses myself so i failed at that job. and then we got home. and that was saturday.

(setting myself up to get killed over posting this picture of miss jet lag 2009)

sunday-pyeongtaek market! and city busses. and lots of yuck things. but lots of cool things. and flowers and clothes and shoes and veggies and fruit and cacti and donuts and stuff. OH! and lunch at the indian restaurant which required a quick telephone translation because our waiter's english didn't quite extend to whether or not there was chicken stock in some of the food. but it was good. and spicy hot. and chai tea as usual.

(thanks to miss jet lag 2009 for the pic. i know the label is misspelled. sometimes my fingers don't work right)


monday-hwaseong fortress wall in suwon. and katusa snack bar for lunch. but not necessarily in that order. ksb was the usual. not such a fan of the korean food. ramyun & mandu will usually suffice and did monday. nallie had dulsot bibimbap (hot veggies & rice). i think she liked it. no gyeran. that wall was seriously huge. and true to tourist-zilla form, we walked all the way around it. which included 4732 steps (WITH A STROLLER, nonetheless). oy. and in the seedy part of town (apparently the wall had a hole in it? which required we walk through a market area. and a bar area. gulp.) we stopped for a drink in a convenience store. apparently the store was very convenient to the drunk korean who availed himself of nallie's butt for a minute. yikes! and then we climbed all those steps. and then climbed back down. and who freakin knew that suwon is SO BIG? geez. and convenience store snacks for dinner because it was late & please don't force me to eat korean food twice in one day. but this store had no butt grabbers. thank goodness. however, there was that one incident at the little waterfall area where i accidentally flashed some korean teenagers all in the name of a picture. and i don't mean northern flash. oops. and the picture didn't come out that good anyway! geez.

(betcha thought it was gonna be a waterfall picture, didn't you? nope. this is suwon from atop the fortress wall. way atop. that was the theme this week.)

tuesday-ahh, tuesday. and a mountain. for real. gyeryongsan national park. about an hour's drive away. yes, I DROVE. that gps is a handy little bugger, that's for sure. we hiked up a mountain. and then walked along a mountain ridge. about 1/2 mile up. the ajeema squad that we traded leads with halfway up the mountain applauded when we motioned that we were headed up. if only we knew why. at one point, we thought we had reached the peak so we sat down & had lunch. and it was pretty. and then we discovered that HAHA it wasn't the peak. there's more climbing to do! and then suddenly we were at the peak & there was this ridge. and breath-taking steps & rocks & a korean very surprised to find americans on the mountain! and a soju dance party waiting to happen (but it didn't, for us at least. boo.) on the next peak & more climbing & 6 hours & 8.2 kilometers later, we were down. and i'd never truly climbed a mountain before. apparently we are part mountain goat. that was handy. and words can't describe the top of that mountain. i've tried. they can't.


video

(the peak before the steps. and the korean ice cream man...only, he didn't have ice cream? only sticks? took this picture. not the best for scenery but LOOK we're on a mountain!)


and i've decided that i'll go ahead & break this into 2 posts. in case someone needs a potty break or a kid needs fed or something. i promise i'll finish this one. right now MY kid needs to go to bed. i'll be back in a bit.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

just out of curiosity...

why is it, when SOME people tell you exactly what they are thinking, your feelings be damned, they are "just being honest" & you shouldn't be offended? BUT when you turn the tables & do the same thing, they get all offensive & ugly? i say turn about is fair play. apparently not everyone plays by the same rules.