Monday, June 27, 2011

my trip to Korea, part 2

Gang-neung is a summer tourist city, since it borders the ocean and is cooler than other regions. We visited "Sun Cruise", which is a cruise boat/hotel that sits on land. The view from the inside looking onto the ocean is fantastic.

Look at that water and the pine trees!

Along the almost-sunset

I wanted to jump into the blue ocean right there, but the water is yet a bit chilly. The water is crystalline blue with the slightest hint of green- it's like fluid emerald.

And this is our backyard- an entire forest. We chilled outside in the shade and even ate our dinners on this table when we were home.

The entire house is like a museum devoted to me and my brother. There's a gazillion little pictures of us framed in equally small and adorable frames everywhere, and here's me!
On the right is my mom, when she was the same age as me in the picture. Something else that's kinda cool, I saw a picture of my grandma (mom's mom) when she was in her twenties, and I thought it was my mom! My grandma is still gorgeous and silly (remind you of anyone?), and with the three of us, I feel like I'm seeing through a time machine.

The shops along the beach in Gang-neung. They all sell sushi/sashimi, and have fresh fish in their tanks. The Japan nuclear scale has threatened the food tourism here, but there hasn't been radioactivity detected in the catch here.
Mom & me on the beach.
The water. I wanted to bottle it up and take it on the plane.

We also visited 신사임당 (Shin Saimdang) and 이이(Yi I)'s house in Gang-neung. Saimdang, the mother of Yi I (who is considered the greatest Korean scholar) is a traditional female role model, although feminists have criticized her role as the "model mother".
Colors and the curves of the roof, so vibrant.

Mom in front of another building- traditional Korean buildings all have names and said names are written in Chinese letters above the door.
Traditional Korean wall and house. The features blend into nature, and yet are graceful and unique.

This concludes my vacation to Korea! I am back and ready to begin the rest of my life. I'm hoping to start keeping a regular schedule and organize my stuff in the apartment. Also, I've found that I am sleepy promptly at midnight now- is that too early of a bedtime for a young twenty-something?

my trip to Korea, part 1.

I am back home, and flipping through the hundreds of pictures I took on my vacation. I had a great time and reconnected with my family/relatives- it was relaxing, comforting, and I absolutely loved my time in Korea. 

Although it was a short trip, we traveled across the country in trains, buses, and taxi's as if it were a trip to some touristy destination. Korea is absolutely beautiful- there's always mountains in the distance, and the weather is mild and varied (we get four seasons!). There's a lot of fun things to look at, such as a store specialized in selling phone cases or the mix of traditional & the new, such as an old Buddhist temple next to a modernized restaurant on the hill.

In Daegu:

Susung-mo: there is a shaded walk around this giant lake, ducks, storks, people-watching...We strolled this lake with my grandma and spent almost an hour watching a duck with four little ducklings.

My grandma's house: this place has always been a constant in my life, and my grandma has an amazingly green thumb. We get persimmons in the fall and flowers when my birthday is just around the corner.

Itaewon: a neighborhood in Seoul known for having lots of foreigners.
We visited Leeum, which had this gorgeous white marble staircase, and the exhibits were arranged leisurely and spaciously. We especially enjoyed the traditional Korean exhibits such as the white and blue porcelain vases.

We grabbed lunch in the neighborhood at a famous restaurant- the entire gang- where we spotted the celebrity. After stuffing ourselves with amazing boodae-jiggae, we still got gelato, red bean ice cream, and fruity drinks at Passion5, a giant black building devoted to everything sweet.

We even visited a WOW-temple (exactly how it's prononuced) in Yong-in. Isn't this impressive?

A collection of a thousand mini-Buddha sculptures

And the pictures continue.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

drinking too much water.

It is a habit of mine to chug down copious amounts of water, making the waiter who serves me and my brother at restaurants to circle our table with the water jug. On this particular flight, I'd ask for multiple bottles of water, and went to the restroom more than anyone else. My mom expressed concerns that I was drinking too much H-2-O, but this was a thirteen hour flight- how did anyone else survive?
Typical- "yes, I'd like some water... again."

First sign of land!

This, combined with a recent magazine article I read stating that drinking water during meals is actively bad for you, made me do some scoping around the web.

Many agree that about 2 liters of water a day is enough, and probably adequate for you to function. (Mayo Clinic) Your body is about two thirds water by weight, and you won’t get thirsty beyond what your body can handle. However, it is dangerous to force large amounts of water  unless you are actually thirsty- such as the case with the 28-year-old mother who died in a “Hold Your Wee for a Wii” contest in 2007.

In addition, there is no evidence that drinking water during eating will somehow dilute your digestive enzymes. (Mayo Clinic). There is a lot of concerns and myths out there about the "right" way to drink water- an hour after meals, 15 minutes before meals, only hot water during meals, but listen to your body. If you have indigestion or acid reflux, you may want to watch how much water you are drinking during meals, but otherwise, drink up!

Many times, I find that when I feel hungry I am actually thirsty. This may be an additional advantage to drinking some aqua before meals to make sure you eat when you are truly hungry.

Here's a cuteness overload- this is one of about fifty framed Little Yesle around dad's house:
me in Hanbok circa 1994.