Posts Tagged With: Food images

More photos from the trip~

As it stands, I’m spending so much time working on photo-editing and training otherwise, I’m not quite feeling the push to write yet this week about the trip itself. I think when I’ve finished processing the photos, I can look back and use individual bits to rattle on about. For now, enjoy these:
Near Angkor


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Life just gets weirder


My life just seems to add layer upon layer of weird to it.

Not a complaint, actually, today is quite a nice one.  What do your school lunches have?  Mine was sliced duck with white rice, sides of cucumber, freshly picked hot pepper, pickled cabbage (kimchi), seaweed soup, and fishcakes. The sauce that went with the duck was a lightly spicy but robust thick reddish sauce that really worked well with the pepper and duck.  After finishing, I entered the teachers’ lounge where I was invited to join everyone in a batch of giant, plump, fresh and local deep-purple grapes that were sweet as a body could hope. After enjoying my fill, I stood, realizing that there was no hope for conversation with these nice people, said may thanks and bowed out of the lounge.
So here I sit at my desk, listening to an animated conversation under the window between two teachers. One a man, the other a lady. They are clearly talking about costs of something and weights thereof, but I can’t get any further into the conversation about what they are talking about.

Today was a special day~ I guess…  We all received an annual gift from our principal. It’s the run-up week to Chuseok, so gifts are being given as if it were Christmas in the states.  Only, Chuseok is a different kind of holiday. Sometimes called Korean Thanksgiving~ it isn’t that at all. It is actually the annual remembrance of ancestors. People visit graves and tend them, mowing the waist-high grasses that have grown on the hillside mounds and visit with the elders of the living family where they have elaborate meals that are created by intense labor by the women and enjoyed in lazy repose by the men. And in tribute to this time of harvest, this festival of ancestors and food, I have been given (exactly the same gift as last year!) a giant box of two bottles of shampoo, two bottles of conditioner and four tubes of toothpaste. Long live the harvest festival! Um… yea…

So here I sit at my desk with some time on my hands. So far, I’ve taught two 45 minute classes and I have one more to go. Granted, my first two class periods before them were in fact used for lesson planning, I’m pretty much done for the week after that effort.   So as it stands, I can sit and reflect a bit.

Recently I’ve been more busy than normal with working on the project of the Korea Burn as we called our Burning Man-like event that happened a couple weeks ago.   Just last night I sent in my final AfterBurn Report and spent the weekend up in Seoul in order to have a series of meetings that helped get some plans on the table.

Being in Seoul is always interesting. I was able to do some gift shopping and visit with friends, and most importantly, enjoy pancakes.

As far as I can recollect, it’s the first plate of pancakes I’ve had since a midnight stop with a dozen friends in the summer of 2010 right by Boeing.  That’s over two years since pancakes.  I’m not sure that’s legal.  So I took care of that.  They were twice the price I’ve ever paid, but what the hell, I was on the roof-top patio of a restaurant in Seoul, South Korea on a beautiful sunny Sunday morning with great company and I couldn’t deny the pull of a brilliant plate of the steaming wondrous goodness that is pancakes with cinnamon apple topping with half a liter of syrup on the side with bacon together with a bottomless cup of drip coffee (for those who don’t know, drip coffee is actually extremely rare in Korea. Even at the boutique cafes that are everywhere, you will always get an americano as opposed to drip  coffee. To me, pancakes require the latter.)  Really, that was nice.

On the other side of the coin, we had a major flood recently that totally washed out tons of stuff. check these two photos out to appreciate how much water was in the river that day.

The one on the left is full of water, and the one on the right is the next day after it all went away.  Look at the post in the background to get how high it was. In the foreground of the photo on the right, what you see are two roads that were totally covered the day before. Under the grasses in the pile was the remnant of a reflective mirror, the kind that stand like signposts so that people can see around sharp curves. It was totally bent over and gathered the debris in the flood.  It was a lot of water.

Of course, because “as Koreans, we work hard” even though there was an historic storm overhead and children were kept from school for their safety, we as teachers were still required to come in during the typhoon. At lunchtime they were evacuating the building because the surrounding roads were becoming flooded and getting home would have been impossible. ~ They actually wanted me to fill out forms to use a vacation day in the process of leaving.  I laughed and explained that just wasn’t going to happen.  We all left the building together. Some of the roads that we made it through at noon would have been completely impassible later in the afternoon. Good thing we left. I gotta wonder about that request though. Humans are a weird bunch.

Cute though.

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Teenagers Rampage!

News article for The Gyeongbuk Province Times (Hypothetical since 1862)

Headline: Teenagers Rampage Downtown Gimcheon!


Early last night, hundreds of plad-clad teenagers were seen flooding the local city streets, gorging on lightly blanched fishcakes, deep fried tentacles, and clearly reveling in the carnage as red glaze dripped down their chins from the recently ravaged wastes of deokk bokki, a word that stutters fear even into itself, as its spelling clearly shows. These rice cakes never knew what was coming… One minute they were lazily basting in a warm sea of spicy, saucy goodness, the next they were being heaped into bowls wrapped in sanitary gloves for their own protection… Yes, even the bowls had reason to fear the deokk bokki… But not the teenagers – with toothpicks, an item previously famed for its dental proclivity, they skewered them with a seeming delight, and laughed as they gnashed their underdeveloped jaws upon the quickly snuffed lives of these innocent – if dangerously spicy rice cakes, clearly enjoying it all. But lo, the proto-humans did not stop there – they pranced away from the old sellers of simmering souls – into the cold darkness – only to seek new excitements and intrigues.  Apparently, their appetites had but been wetted.

After the destruction laid down upon the booths of many things – they were seen darting in and out of the many stores on the main road that had, until then, known the kind of peace and quiet that only a lazy afternoon in the countryside can offer a shopkeeper sometimes… Yes, these overgrown rugrats, these marsupialine cyberjunkies dove into the unsuspecting shopfronts with fire in their eyes and malice in their hearts… It is the only explanation for what was to follow… It was as if they had to try on every single hat in order to convince themselves that they didn’t really want one after all – and all the testing of pens – good God! The amount of ink lost in those few seconds could have allowed children in lesser lands to do arithmetic that would forever allude them, now that these tornadoes of testing had blown through…

But when all was nearly lost, after the pencil cases had been dismissively tossed aside, and the notebooks completely disorganized – there was a moment where it was as if an angel of clarity flew into the room – As I peered from my safe distance, far across the way, behind the protective enchantment of the aura created by the steam coming from my caramel soy latte. I could see them coalesce as if they had reached a moment of enlightenment – as I squinted to see what they were holding, I could see in their hands small scraps of some sort – they seemed to be of many different colors and designs… So I got up from my seat, considered the dangers, and began walking towards the window…. I stepped outside, warily keeping my distance lest I be spotted by a student or a high schooler who thinks I’m one of them, all the while smelling my latte to make sure it was still there… As I stepped through the gateway of the cafe into the sidewalk, I saw what it was, I saw the trigger of their mood. I saw… the socks…

These socks were no normal socks. They were cute, really cute, dangerously cute if I may say. Dangerous because they distract. They distract teachers from chastising, and schoolmates from focused study – they are dangerous to the cold rigor of morbidity that is required if they are to be the future leaders of their people – Oh sure, people say that they are just children and should be allowed to run free – but they are only safe to be around when they have the socks! Without the socks, they are evil, conniving, destructive beasts of consumption and interactivity. Let this article stand as a warning to anyone who would walk during nighttime in the streets of Gimcheon, Korea. There are teenagers on the loose. And they will stop at nothing to find those cute little socks with all the pictures of monkeys, rock stars, cartoon characters and God knows what else! I was a witness… When they finished swooning like a lion after a feeding on its woe-begotten prey – they fled from there in a fury that could only have been called a stampede, as the dust thrown up in their wake was as dark a cloud as the tension that hung in the air from the places from whence they had just come.


The Following Photo is Unrelated (and should be considered for scratch-and-sniff computer screen status.) 

This is what I do to myself when you're not around!


Take care out there.

~jimmer out

This story is copyright 2011, James Jordan.

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