Tuesday, October 23, 2007

My Weekend.

I just had a pretty boozy weekend, It all started on Friday night when I had a bit of party to celebrate my birthday. So I told everyone to rock up to my favourite restaurant in South Korea, which thank Kurt Cobain is not Korean at all but is in fact a Vietnamese place called PHO. It's just around the corner from my flat, has a great beer called Saigon, Jangles this is highly recommended should you ever stumble across it in your travels buy two. The food is not Korean, not even cooked by Koreans, the only shit thing is that they cant speak English but I'm over that and am now fucking good at charades.

I manage to go there once a week or so and get their Vietnamese sandwich which is a bloody big baguette filled to the brim with a kind of pork stir fry with fresh coriander on top. The only problem is that they don't keep much of the bread in stock so most of the time when I roll up I'm just given an ashtray and a class of wheat water while I wait for the dude to race off on his push bike down to to the bakery to get my bread. That fulla sees me coming and with his best smile always makes me by two of them, I'm not complaining about this at all because I'm in a country where rotten spicy cabbage is the nations staple and they are simply superb.

Shit, I've got 10 minutes to my next class and I want a smoke so I'll be back in a few hours.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

It's my Birthday.

Today is my birthday and I have just turned 28 but in Korea I have turned 29 because the crazies over here add an extra 9 months to your age because they count from conception not birth and they add an extra 3 months to make it easy to count!

So far I got a cake at the coffee shop from the Rotorua and Keri Keri chicks, a chicken and cheese toastie from the fulla from Christchurch and a cool black hoodie from my Korean colleagues, and another cake from my students and also some socks. Score for me! Tonight when I'm playing poker I will be bloody pissed off if I don't get a couple of beers out of EVERY player so be warned, and you all know I play a little weird when I mix Soju and beer so I'm gonna bluff my way to victory with extremely bad cards.

I've lost my cell phone and my Foreign Residents Alien Registration Card. Doh. I cant get a phone till I get a new card and that means a trip to Busan during working hours which I just don't want to do cause then I'll have to get up early and catch buses and the Subway.

Rugby? What Rugby, I have no idea what your talking about.

Now I remember, The mighty HAWKES BAY MAGPIES made the Semi Final! Those Dorklanders are still a bunch of ㅃ쫗ㅎㄴ오ㅗ.

Whats the difference between the All Blacks and Viagra?

At least with Viagra you can crack a Semi.

I just read about those mad people in the Urewera's. Bloody Hell, that's not on, Lock em up.

I'm off to Daegu this weekend with my mate from Sth Africa to watch this final that I've been told about but I have no idea what sport it is, probably Tae Kwon Do, you know considering we are in the home of it, not sure really. But then why would a Sth African owned bar be watching that? More weird Korean craziness.

Most of my mates from when I first got here have left and a whole new bunch have turned up, that makes me happy and sad.

Bummer about the Cat and Fiddle, I liked that place.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Yeah Baby.

I turn up to work today after a late night out watching a movie (Stardust, good for an evenings entertainment and Michelle Phiefer is still hot) to find that my schedule has been changed, 3 Classes today, YEAH BABY.

So I start at 2.45 and finish by 6.30 which means I can get drunk before the poker game tonight and not during it.

Last night I ate pigs lungs. They were very good.

World cup is all good, Sux to be French at the best of times but what were they thinking?

A Nigerian bloke told me a joke.

A man walks into a shop and asks for the time, the lady behind the counter looks at the clock and says

"It is 2 O'clock"

He walks down the road to have a coffee and returns to the same shop and again asks for what the time is, The lady is on her lunch break and the young man behind the counter looks down at his watch and answers

"It is 3 O'watch"

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Summer Holiday Part Three.

O.K, it's been a while since I've written and my holiday isn't fresh in my mind any more but I'll make it up. I'm sitting here eating a Ham and Cheese toasted sandwich which is delicious, it's from a shop called Issac and it is a big chain through out Korea but to own a franchise you have to be a christian! They love me and give me extra ham.

I do remember an incident with the police, we had been out all night and our hotel was next to the train station so we got a taxi there, it is impossible to not understand the letters K.T.X in Korea as it is their super fast train and everyone is proud of it so for the Taxi man to balls it up reeks of tacking advantage of the foreigners. Admittedly we had been on a brew called Ultra Super Dead but that's not the point. This bloody driver took us half an hour in the wrong direction before demanding that we pay him and get out in the whop wops. So we did what any one would do, told him to get fucked and take us to the train station. He got a little angry at that and threatened to call the police but we jumped the gun on him and we called them! That really pissed him off. So the coppers turn up, he shouts at them, we attempt to tell our side of the story in Korean. The cops say something to him and in sign language tell us to get in the cop car and that we did not have to pay the taxi man and that they would drive us to our hotel which was next to the Train station.

Foreigners 1 Racist M!##$%^^&*()_ Taxi drivers 0

Last night I went and played poker and I won, yay for me, and came second in the second game.

A new bar has opened in town called the Wa Bar. So I have been hanging out there a little.

I went to a pretty cool fancy dress party as a cowboy.

Been offered a pretty sweet new contract with more cash, more holidays and a bigger apartment but dunno bout it.

Got another work seminar on Saturday in Daegu.

Was stoked that I remembered fathers day.

New work schedule this month which is a piece of cake.

Lots of my mates are leaving and a new group is arriving. That is good and bad.

Kiwis are starting to overrun this town. 8 of us out of over half a million people.

Just finished my toastie so I'm off.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Dave's Summer Holiday Part Two.

So we all got to the Train Station at Gupo with some serious hangovers, it really is the best way to travel with our original; plan being to catch the train up the east Coast and hit the Demilitarised Zone which if your an idiot is the strip of land with heaps of mines on it between the North and South. (In one of those James Bond films, the one with the dude who changes his entire body from North Korean to Posh Englishmen and has some sort of ray gun satellite that harnesses the Suns energy and focuses it on this piece of land and blows up all the mines so that the North can attack!)

However that train was not going for another couple of hours so we convinced the dude in charge to let us behind the ticket counter and look at all his maps and shit and just decided to take the next train out of the station. That was a brilliant move on our behalf as it make the entire trip trip random and we always just went to the next place on the next available transport.

We ended up in Suncheong which due to our liquid diet I don't really remember much about it, and then we ended up in Yeosul which was amazing. Our first stop was this bar that had a Tenor there who sang lots of stuff I knew but could not name for you and he spoke a little English and was a top bloke. We were sitting on the balcony overlooking a dead person! We rambled around a little and watch a game of Soccer somewhere, Korea vs Japan in the 3rd/4th playoff for the Asia Cup which Korea won on penalties so was all good before hitting a golden bar. We walked in, after deciphering the menu and realising only beer was available we asked for whisky anyway and got directed upstairs to a bar we had not even seen and we treated like Kings! That place was so out of the way I don't think to many white people have been there before.

I think that we were lucky that we had all been in Korea for around 7 months now and could hold a very basic conversation in Korean which is a tremendous help in getting free drinks. Most Koreans have a smattering of extremely basic high school English so with our Korean and there English and the odd dictionary we managed to keep a conversation going for an entire bottle of scotch with the bar staff and the pissed guys next to us.

After that we hit the beach, it was there that I discovered rice wine, which in phonetic English is called Dong Dong Ju, we were on that beach for around 6 hours, I might of had a skinny dip and I might of bought over $60 of fire works and I may off quite deeply cut my left foot on a boats propeller but.....

From there we decided to go to Sado Island because on the big sign outside the train station there was a picture of a dinosaur on it and I was intrigued. Bearing in mind that the sun is now up, we had been drinking for a nearly a day and a half we managed to find the ferry terminal, hopped on, and went.....to the wrong island. Not to Worry.

That ferry was pretty cool, it was choc a block with people, produce and bloody squid, man I hate that stuff, it's everywhere, dried squid smells crap any way but when it is hot it is disgusting. So we got off on what we thought was the right island, as we disembarked I got a whisper in my ear daring me to jump off, so I did. When I finally managed to haul myself out of the water who was standing there? two coppers! I just started laughing, luckily my mates talked to them for me and we wandered off to explore this next place.

Our taxi driver misunderstood us, we asked to go to the beach, over here the Konglish word for the beach is beachy. The driver took us to a locals house who was called Mr Beachy! Anyway we finally got there and spent the day drinking in the sun, swimming and generally doing nothing. That place was a little backward, not much of anything there but it was cool to see a very different side of Korea.

I'll put the rest up later.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Dave's Summer Holiday.

Holidays are all good, I had a week off starting on the 25th July and back at work last Wednesday 1st August. I had to hang around Gimhae for a few days waiting for my mates to finish their work, every one's holidays were different to each other but a few overlapped. So I had a few nights out on the town.

On Friday my racing buddy had his brother over so we went to the races, I was quite excited about it because I usually work on Fridays and as such never get there during the week. So we went to catch the bus there and it didn't show. That should have been our first warning but we just put it down to our lack of Korean language skills. So we took a cab there, once at the track we were wondering why it was so empty. People still at work I thought and not at the races? Well, wrong again, it turned out that the races had been called off due to the heat! It was bloody hot but who cares? I was on Holiday! So we hung around trying to get another cab home. We got a dude to ring us a cab but he called one from Busan not from Gimhae so it was really expensive and we refused it and managed to catch a lift to the highway where we figured we could flag a taxi or at least a bus. Next thing I know my Pommie mate had stuck out his thumb and a few cars later we were off to Jangyu which is next to Gimhae, better than nothing we thought.

When we got back to Gimhae we went to Home plus where we discovered to our delight that rubber dinghy's were on sale, $20 down from $60. I'll have one of those I thought, but something was missing so we got a fishing rod and some bottles of Red wine as well and wandered down to the river in the middle of Gimhae.

What a sight we made! 3 pissed white fullas in a one man rubber dinghy with a 10ft rod, slurping red wine. I have never had so many toots and cat calls come my way in all my life. We tried to buy some fish as bait but once the lady realised we were going to use it as bait and not eat it she refused to sell it to us. (It was my brilliant charades act that got this point across). Tart. So we bought a can of spam and used that only it was pretty crap and kept falling of the hook so we caught some grass hoppers but they were no good as well. So for a few hours we floated down the way, as twilight struck the dry shore based fishermen came out and they were not to happy when we floated by.

Korea is a cool place, the taxi driver did not even flinch we hopped in dripping wet, half cut and with a semi deflated rubber dinghy.Not even when we payed with wet money did he blink his eyes! Sometimes I really wish I knew what is going through their minds when they see the antics foreigners get up to!

So we then went to the pub and the Norebang and met up with some mates who had completed their contract and were on their way outta here to greener pastures.

Around 5 or 6am we decided to crack out the boat again and sail the vast waters of Yungee Park. This time I was too far gone to set up the rod so we left it behind. On this adventure whilst I was tipping my mates out we broke an oar. Don't worry this is Korea anything goes! So we marched back into Homeplus, still dripping wet, by this time we were all absolutely F!@#$%^ed and managed to convince them that the boat only came with one oar and we needed another to make the pair as we were rowing around in circles. And you know what? It worked! Our language skills are coming along very nicely thank you very much.

I get home sometime after sunup only to be awaken by a few phone calls around 12 reminding me that I had to met a different set off mates to do a wee bit of travelling around Korea. I hate forgetting things like that! So off to met the boys for the start of the travels... Numerous trains a couple of ferries, a floating Christian bookshop, two run ins with the coppers and a swollen foot coming up....

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Two weekends ago in Seoul.

I had a good time in Seoul, We left very early and travelled for around 7 hours straight to find this theme park that we wanted to check out. It was called Everland and was pretty cool, it was a theme park and a Zoo! I saw 3 white Tigers, numerous monkeys (those always make me laugh) some camels, two polar bears who were in a tiny enclosure, got a bus ride through a paddock where there was 20 or so lions, heaps of animals. The theme park side of it was awesome, we went on loads of rides and I got some funny photos of me which were taken automatically by a machine on the Roller Coasters.

Then we went to the Casino! It was at the Hilton Hotel and I had to prove that I was a bloody foreigner! cause Koreans can't gamble in Casinos. It was really expensive so I didn't play on the tables and I dropped a fair chunk of change in the pokies before going out in search of Guinness, which I found along with some Jameson's, I ruled the pool table that night!

On Sunday I went to the races where I fell asleep for three of them and then to top it all off we stumbled past a 100% No bullshit Real Deal French Restaurant. FFFFOOOOOOOOODDDDDD!
I had for starters a Salmon Salad thingy with balsamic vinegar, I know this sounds stupid but I really miss food from back home so when I saw the word balsamic I had to go change my undies. Followed by the Scallops in a garlic sauce and washed down with my old mate Johnnie Red. And a chocolate thingy for desert. I paid a small fortune for it but I didn't care one bit!

Caught the last train home and that was that.

Korea is a cool place.