Sunday, September 22, 2013

Eating, eating, and karaoke

I've tried to update my "other" teaching blog.  With everything that had to be done in coming to Korea (things ordered, copied, apostilled, etc.), that blog went by the wayside.  I am trying to start adding more to it, including adding classroom and teaching goodies to my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  I just uploaded three new products.  Whew.  It took a while.  I'm hoping and praying that it gets easier once I find my groove.  Here is my "other" blog...
Would love to hear what you think!

Back to my Korea blog...
I was off on vacation this whole past week.  It was glorious.  I chilled, relaxed, slept late, read books, watched movies, went to dinner with friends, etc.  Like I said, it was wonderful.  I am now fully charged.  Last Thursday night before my teachers trip, I met up with Jenny at the train station, and we met friends in Techno Valley for Mexican food.  However, the taxi driver was not a very nice person and dumped us in the middle of nowhere.  Techno Valley is in the north of Daejeon, far away from where I live.  This taxi driver saw two American ladies and decided to take us for a loop.  He dropped us off on the wrong side of the river, and we had no choice but to get out.  We didn't know the language, the area, or where to go.  Luckily, Jenny had just gotten her phone set up for Korea, so she used Google Maps.  It was NOT easy, and it took us about 45 minutes to meet the girls.  We were an hour late by the time we got there.  We were NOT happy.  That was the worst experience I've had so far in Korea.  Anyway....the Mexican food was really good.  It was not anywhere near my Uncle Julio's Mexican food, but it was pretty darn good.

We started off with nachos.  Can you say yummo?  Koreans put a lot of cabbage on their "Mexican" food, which I find a little odd, but hey...just go with it.
Yummy nachos
Nachos all gone
Lauren with her favorite beer.  She was pretty excited.
The quesadillas
My order of chicken tacos.   As you can see, there was a lot of cabbage.  They were very good!
Having fun with Jenny
They brought out free oranges for us after dinner.  Yum!

Amanda, my friend from Techno Valley, spent the night on Saturday after my teachers trip.  It was really good to catch up.  We often sat next to each other in our EPIK lectures and kept each other sane.

Julie's birthday was last Monday, so we went out to celebrate.  She wanted dumplings, so we went and had mandu, the Korean dumplings.  They were really good.  We also got fried rice with ham.

Then we went to Angel In Us coffee shop and split a waffle.  Oh.  M.  Gee... That waffle was so good.  It was a big Belgian waffle with just a tad of syrup and blueberries in the middle.  We ate it before I could snap a picture.  I will totally go again just so I can get a picture of it, ok?  I'll make the sacrifice.
I had to get some fun birthday pictures of Julie, so here she is with the cut cardboard cut-out Korean boy.

We love going out to eat here in Korea.  There are so many different restaurants to choose from.  Dani and Matt introduced Julie and me to a new restaurant right in our neighborhood which served spicy chicken.  This chicken was pretty spicy, but this Texas chick could handle it.
As many Korean restaurants do, they cook it right at your table.

This was a rice soup that was dis-gus-ting.  Tasted like awful vinegar.
Julie and I had our bibs on!
Dani and Matt
Adding in all the veggies
Kimchi and sauces.  Gotta have the kimchi!
When it was almost done, they put cheese on top.  Yum!
After we had eaten most of it, they add rice to make it like a pancake. 
The "pancake" 

We had to leave our shoes at the door, like you do at typical Korean restaurants.

Our little spicy chicken restaurant.  I pass by it every morning on my way to school.  Now I can say I've been there!

On Wednesday night, I met up with Julie and our new friend, Emily, for dinner and karaoke.
We decided to try a new restaurant that advertised chicken, beer, pizza, and Soju.
Our menu was in Korean, except the food categories, which were often misspelled
Fride foods
The typical foods when you order fried chicken and pizza
At each booth, we got to watch K-Pop videos.  I could SO go back to this place!
The fried chicken was EXCELLENT!  It tasted just like the spicy extra crispy chicken from KFC.
Then we were off to find a karaoke place, which isn't that hard in my little neighborhood.  There are at least 6 in just the couple of blocks from the chicken restaurant to my apartment.  The place we picked was awesome.  It was all girly pink with chandeliers.

Our friend from EPIK, LaToya, ended up taking the train to our neck of the woods to meet us.  Emily and I got started singing while Julie walked to the train station to meet her.  Emily and I had a blast just choosing songs and singing.  Every song she picked I loved and sang along and vice versa with her too.  Am totally going back to this place!
Every karaoke room has two tambourines.  Is that awesome or what?
Emily singing her heart out
The videos to go along with the karaoke songs were priceless.  This was the picture that went along with Lady Marmalade.  You automatically think of a parrot when you hear that song, right? 
Singing "Sweet Caroline"
Then Julie and LaToya got back, and we sang some more!

It was a great start to my week of Chuseok.  For my next post, I will show you Expo Park, which is famous in Daejeon.  Tons of pictures to share!

I am: sitting at my desk about to make a grilled cheese sandwich
I hear: my new favorite singer, Madilyn Bailey, on my iPod - she sings covers of famous songs and is simply amazing
I feel: excited to see my students tomorrow after a week of being on vacation
I love: having the windows open and the fans going during this great fall weather

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