Wednesday, August 09, 2006


My first ever blog

Well, ive finally done it. Created my own blog that is.

Its more a way for me to keep an online diary for myself whilst travelling, but hopefully other may enjoy some of it too. Who knows, i may continue to blog once Im back home too....well see.

Anyway, where to start.
Unfortunately, Ive already started my 2nd leg of the holiday, so I have a LOT of catching up to do. basically, my holiday consists of 3 weeks in Korea - 2 weeks of working summer english camp, and 1 week just hanging out...and then the fun part, 1 month in Cambodia and Vietnam. i just arrived in Hochimin city yesterday, but im rather exhausted and have massive blisters so im gunna take it easy. Met 2 youngish Japanese blokes yesterday, and Ill prolly head to Phnom Penh (thats the capitol of Cambodia for all u uncultured fools) tomorrow morning up the mekong delta (thats a river of course) on some 2 day cruise with them. dunno why, but i think I prefer to hang out with japanese dudes than most brits or ozzies i find when travelling...theres something about their quiet nature that I like, and these dudes seem pretty cool. plus of course, a great chance to practice my Japanese.

ANYWAYZ, Korea. Lets get that outta the way first, coz theres a lot to tell.

After a mammoth 24 hour journey there, i walked around for almost an hour lookn for cheap accom. i have this crappy lonely planet from like 15 years ago, unfortunately Korea is not like japan in that prices have gone up considerably since I shrugged off the first few hotels 9they were charging 35000 won, my book said i could get 7000 won in that area). Eventually i found the hotel area near Insadong and some places that did dorms. Even better - one place did me a single room to myself at dorm price (17,000won, or about AUS$25) although it was rather shitty and clostrophobic (ie v small, and the windows opened into another room rather than outside). Not the best guesthouse (Its called beewon btw) but it did the trick for 1 night and allowed me to drop my bags off and wander the streets. and the guests were interesting - mainly Japanese! I met 1 woman from Taiwan when i stayed there again after the camp - we spoke Japanese at first (just why she said konnichi wa when i walked past Ill never know, maybe she could tell i speak Japanese?!!!), then some korean, then a quick burst of chinese (ni hui shoo chong wen ma? hui, demo wo chong wen bu hao) and of course english. Then a pidgeon version using all 4. Weird but cool.

Anywayz, to cut a long story slightly shorter, I headed to daegu city (3rd biggest in Korea, pretty much a shithole though) and hung out with 2 mates who I did my grad dip of TESOL with, who both live there now (but not for long). first night with John (a brit) - poor guy, he doesnt get out uch it seems. we went into town, found a VERY cool bar made from an old bus attached to weird structures (inc childrens play equipment) and lots of motorbike n car paraphenalia all over the place. One of my fav bars eva. We got back around 2am - the latest night out hes had in Korea in the 10 months or so that hes lived there.

Trtied to get money the next day, but had lost my keycard. Fcking brilliant. Luckily, i traced it back to the ATM at the airport, gave my prospective boss a call, and she somehow had a family member who knew the bank manager, so she was able to get em to give it to her, and back to me (i woulda had to go to the airport otherwise). Wootwoot!!

anyway, yadayadayada, went out again, this time to some "proper" clubs, with Michael, John, and another teacher (Michaels mate, who we called Matchek, forgot 1st name). The clubs werent our thing (way too packed, and all dodgy hiphop, r n b etc...but good DJs to be honest and an interesting mix of english and korean stuff) so we left and called it a night.

The next day was probably the highlight though. All 4 of us bundled into Matcheks car, and headed south to Busan, or more specifically Hyundae beach in Busan. Its probably the most famous beach in Korea, and judging by the amount of people that were there, considering the weather was pretty terrible, I can see that its true!! Unfortunately, it was on again off again rain (but only of the very light sprinkly kind of rain) so not the best day for the beach. I was still trying to recover from a nasty cold that I took with me from Oz, so I didnt go swimming - but amazingly we saw about 6 people on surfboards at one end of the beach trying to catch these tiny 1 to 2 ft waves. Anyway, the beach is chock-full of umbrellas, which u need to rent of course. Luckily it wasnt that hot, so we simply went to one end of the beach and did a little hike to a lookout.

Heres the photos of the beach (and us)

From Left: Myself, John, Michael & Machek

And another piccy of the beach, but from the other end:

Finally, I cant end my little blog of Korea with adding a pic of a bike.
I had intended to take a shitload of photos of various motorbikes in Korea, for no particular reason (other than the fact I like them), but my camera fcked most of the shots (well im partly to blame too I spose). They seem to really like bikes over there, but noone ever (well rarely) gets anything better than a single-cylinder 125cc....That doesnt stop em trying to make em look cool. Heres the 2 good photos i took

Heres a relatively "cool" looking bike with attitude. Dont be fooled by the twin exhaust - a closer inspection reveals that its only a shitty 125cc bike, with 1 single cylinder!!

And heres a tiny, tiny little bike (50cc I suspect) that looks rather space-aged and futuristic. No doubt theyre very fuel efficient!!
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