Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Busy weekend.

Anderson had three DJ gigs, including a Full Moon Party, a 6-hour set, on X-Mas Eve. On Sunday we dressed up as Santa and Mrs. Claus for another branch of our school (that doesn't have foreign teachers yet), singing "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" to two auditoriums full of Korean parents and children. We'll try and get a copy of the video for everyone's amusement. Christmas Day we went to a fancy buffet dinner at a beach-side hotel, which was spectacular. The most (100,000) we've ever spent on a meal together, without a doubt, but decadence was the name of the game. Sushi and sashimi, piles of seafood, and every animal one could desire cooked to perfection: lamb, duck, turkey, beef, pork - plus extensive holiday dishes - it was a Westerner's dream come true, with plenty of wine included as well. Pain never felt so good.
On Saturday night we had our teachers' party for school, at one of our Korean co-teachers' house. Chris made an entire table of spectacular food, from chicken salads to sesame beef, and there were even 3 different cakes. Haagen-Daz narrowly beat out Baskin-Robbins for the best ice cream cake. We played with her crazy cat (a scratcher and a biter), and even had a mini-dance party before hitting up Neo, the fancy but chronically empty bar the Anderson DJs at on Saturdays. It's just changed ownership, doesn't advertise, and has a bad location... but the place is beautiful, has a good drink special, and a sweet American DJ Saturdays at midnight :-)
Today, Wednesday, we were back at work, doing speaking tests with all of our classes, which meant there were pretty easy. Holidays are few and far between with our job, but at least we had a four-day weekend for Christmas, and while we have the joy of working NYE until 8:30pm, we do have both the 1st and 2nd off. For New Years we are going to either go out, or go to a bonfire down by the beach, but either while we'll be beach-side for the sunrise of the new year, which is a bit of a Korean tradition, and is supposed to be spectacular with the ocean lit up in reds and oranges. Our camera is currently not functioning, but we'll definitely get photos from someone to remember the moment(s) by.
We just watched the movie "The Constant Gardener," and you should follow suit - it's really good, and will surely make you love big pharmaceutical companies more than you already do.
We finally have a wireless internet router, so both our computer are online, much to Liz's delight since its hard to wrestle Anderson off of the computer - he's been waiting over a year for regular internet access, and he's not going to give it up easily...
We got to talk with both of our parents on our X-Mas evening, which was quite nice, and our video chat with Anderson's parents was very nice, given the long-time-no-see factor.
Our cat-sitting venture is still going well, Jonesy now sleeps with us every night, and thankfully Liz is a most patient mouse-waver, so he is getting plenty of exercise.

That's about it from the 10th floor...
Much love and seasonal greetings
Anderson & Liz

Monday, December 17, 2007

Another exciting week in Korea has passed, with all going well as usual. We got paid last Monday, and although our checks were only partial since we started working a little ways into November, it was very nice to see our bank account increasing instead of decreasing! Our computers have arrived, and we have internet at our house (tracking down an adapter for our modem proved to be a bit of an effort), which means Anderson is one happy nerd.
Last week at school we had an observation day, which went much better than expected. Our combined negative comment: Anderson shouldn't use recycled paper for his activities... rather environmentally conscious, don'tcha think? Everything else they said was good, so both of us, and our director, are quite pleased with things, since we were definitely not respecting such positive feedback. After all, we've taught a total of 2 months in our lives!
Anderson's DJ gigs over the weekend went pretty well, and despite a generally sluggish performance his soccer team, DMZ, managed a still easy 5-3 victory over rivals Inter Busan. Afterwards was the team Christmas dinner, at the American-owned Seaman's Club (meant for Navy sailors), which meant cheap and tasty bacon cheese-burgers, as well as equally cheap Corona's.
Our next week, the last before Christmas obviously, will be busy since we have to prepare our bi-monthly student reviews, but our reward is a much-appreciated 4-day holiday. This upcoming weekend will be busy: Friday & Saturday are DJing gigs and Sunday we are dressing up as Mr. & Mrs. Claus for a party at another branch of our school (missing soccer will be a shame, but the overtime pay is pretty nice). We'll be teaching/performing Christmas songs, as well as doing activities - should be interesting...
Monday, Christmas Eve, is the monthly Full Moon Party, which hopefully will be busy and crazy, and then we're going out for a fancy Christmas buffet dinner, as well as an orchestral Christmas brunch at the Korean cultural center where we saw the Korean opera last week.
We are also cat-sitting for Anderson's teammate Kester, so for the next 3 weeks we have a nice feline friend named Jonesy. Not quite the same as the dog-trifecta (one big, one medium, one small) that we dream of, but certainly a nice short-term substitution.

A: Anything else?
L: Ummm... not really.

Guess that's it for now then, hope your December is one to remember, ha-ha, and have a Merry X-Mas if you don't hear from us before then, ho-ho.

As always,
Anderson & Liz

Monday, December 03, 2007

Anderson now has a blog for his DJing:
You may have noticed that our posting is back to "infrequent" - not because we don't love and miss you all, rather just that we're more than a bit busy!
School, the occasional obnoxious child aside, is going well, prep time is down to a tidy yet leisurely 60 minutes, and most classes fly right by, particularly on Tuesday and Thursday when things are more listening-oriented. That means we primarily play either a tape or CD, and then ask questions, etc. about it. Monday/Wednesday/Friday is book-based, though we are allowed/encouraged to use games and conversation to assist in learning.
Enough about our jobs, though, right? We only teach for 28 hours a week, plus a few more hours of prep, so we've got lots of time for "life," which is great. We had a very busy weekend:
Friday night Anderson DJed hip-hop at The Basement bar, which went pretty well... we were out late dancing, though our 4am McDonalds was all too quickly just a memory. Saturday we did some shopping, in Nampo-dong, a cheap and large market, before going out to the Vinyl Underground for some dancing. The house music was somewhat bland, but it was still a decent time. Sunday Anderson had soccer in the morning, and his team, DMZ, played 3 30-minute games against Korean teams. They won all 3 games: 2-1, 3-0, 2-1. Not too shabby. Afterwards some of the team went to a Korean bath, Vespa, which was spectacular. All sorts of baths and saunas rubbed most of the pain of the games away, and then our Korean-pork feast afterwards took care of the rest of our woes (as did the maekju and soju :-). From there we played pool and poker at a teammates house, before going out for a quiz show at a pub to end the night.
Now it's the week again, so our afternoon/evenings are spent working, although tonight, Tuesday, we're going to go to The Basement for an open mic, and so Anderson can set up a more permanent DJ schedule.
Hope all's well for you, too
Peace and love