Thursday, June 28, 2007

Back to the Beach

I don't have any pictures today, maybe I'll edit one in later... but I went to swim in the ocean today for the first time this summer! Am I crazy! It's almost July, I live on an island, and I haven't been to the beach yet! Well, it was fantastic. The water was a bit chilly, but great once you get used to it.

The Koreans still haven't been going to the beaches on Jeju yet this summer either. Well, a few people go, but the beaches have been far from crowded. The official opening date for Iho beach is July 1st. Its been getting really hot and humid these last couple weeks, I can't imagine that they aren't opening up just a little early. Hopefully I'll spend some more time going to the beach...Its one of the best parts of living here in the summer!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Gasoline



Its not exactly the prettiest picture I've taken but, well, neither are the gas prices. I keep reading in the US news about how expensive gas is...and I'll be the first to admit that $3.oo a gallon is really expensive. Well, here's what gas prices are like in Korea. I read in the Korea Herald last week that Korea has the 6th highest gas prices in the World. The price on the top is for the gas they put into my tank per liter. At the current exchange rate, that's well over $6.00 a gallon! Its a good thing my motorcycle gets great mileage!

This being said, one of my favorite things about coming to gas stations in Korea is how fast it goes. All of the stations are Full Service. Right when you pull in, someone happily comes running up to serve you. I just tell them to put 10,000 won in, they fill it up and take the money. I'm out in less than 2 minutes!

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Circumnavigation


Ryan, Driving near Sanbangsan

7hrs, 220km.

That's how long it took us to ride our motorcycles all the way around Jeju Island. Ryan and I don't have to work until 7pm on Wednesdays so we decided to go for the ride! John and Jin joined us for the first half and Ryan and I finished the second half. Josh and Luke slept in....

It was a fantastic ride. The coast road is a little spotty; sometimes, you're on it and sometimes you have to go back to the highway. We decided that The NW and SW are the best for scenic views and the NE is the best for turny roads. The SE coast is the only part of the drive Ryan and I have never seen and was a little sub-par.

It was a gorgeous drive and a beautiful day for it. We took our lazy time. We stopped for a quick lunch and then a nice barbecue pork rib dinner. I'll definitely do it again!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Rainy Week



Its been an ultra lazy week this week. One of the troubles with working in the evenings is that most days I sleep in later than I like to. This rainy week however, I had no problems with sleeping in until noon on Thursday!

Consequently, I haven't been out taking pictures either, so here's one from climbing at Musucheon last weekend. I'm getting excited about the climbing trip to China I'll take in September, so I'm trying to find motivation to climb more!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Another Year



Well, I'm about to sign my new contract to stay in Korea for another year! I was able to work out a good contract with less hours and a nice month-long vacation in September. I'm pretty excited and nervous at the same time.

I decided to stay for a few reasons. Most importantly, I'm enjoying life in Jeju. Work is good and I've made some good friends who should still be here for a good chunk of the next year. Granted, its not as exciting as working at Alta (ski area), canoeing in the boundary waters, or traveling somewhere new. However, the island living is nice, especially in the summer. My Korean language study is also coming along well....I can actually understand a word or two now!!! Of course the money is good too and I'm saving a boatload (by my standards) which is nice. I guess I just feel like the second year will be even better than the first.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Kite Runners



Yesterday, I met my friends John and Alaska Sam for some kite flying. I met them in a horse pasture just behind the city. What a beautiful setting with Halla Mountain in the background!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Jeju Marathon



It was a busy week for visitors! Over the weekend another friend who I met in Thailand, Jessica, and three other lovely ladies from the mainland came to Jeju to run in the Jeju Marathon! Well, she actually ran in the 10k, but that's okay! I couldn't even run at all! I just slept in, came late, and met her at the finish line. Doh! Well anyway, it was good to see Jessica, albeit briefly. It's always good to see another Hoosier! It was also especially good that Jessica came down because it got Michelle running outside of the gym for the first time! She ran in the 10k in record time for herself! Maybe she'll do the half-marathon next year!?

Here's Jessica's blog at http://worldinherhands.blogspot.com/

Monday, June 04, 2007

Power of the Web!



All of my blogging has paid off in many ways. I write mostly for my family and friends to be able to see how life is halfway across the world. That's good enough in itself, but a fortunate by-product happened; I got an email from Massimo, an Italian who came to Jeju for a conference on magnetic materials! He's a climber, so he was able to take some time away from the conference and we had a fantastic morning of climbing! Thanks Massimo!