Saturday, July 21, 2012

Shhh! We're in Korea

There's been some baptism by fire around here. We're learning so much every day. It really is exhausting! One thing we've learned-and we unfortunately learned it the hard way-is that Koreans enjoy their "peaceful space". Don't get me wrong, we all enjoy some quiet space, but it's a cultural norm here. For example, there's nothing but peaceful space on the subway. Personal space, no. Quiet, yes. The long and short of it is that our downstairs neighbors called the security people on us today! (In their defense-the neighbor's, not our kids-our kids were being annoyingly loud).
However, the bright side about this is why they were being so loud: we don't have a working TV. I'll admit that while we were packing and preparing for the move the last few weeks up until we left, the kids watched a stupifying amount of television, so I'm glad to cut us off cold turkey. We have a TV, but we don't have cable.
so lonely without his friends cable or DVD player
We've been trying out new things to pass the time quietly. We played "Go Fish" and "War" with the girls.
Ruby, upset that the ante needs to be in Korean won, not US dollars

Then played Beauty Parlor (I can't figure out why I have named it that-how old am I? First thing on the list of things to do is change the game to Salon)

Jim gets extensions!

Another quiet activity? Art!
"princess" realism, ink on paper by Ruby Farley
More learning for us when Tara and her son, Sean, came over this morning. Tara took me though a few things she'd learned about Good Morning Hill apartments (she was actually here when we got in trouble with the noise, so I took that as my chance to teach her something: how not to upset your neighbors. You're welcome Tara!)
TRASH, revisited
As I have mentioned in a previous post, Koreans take the trash situation seriously. Even more seriously than I had realized. The food trash should not be wet. Tara told me that some go as far as to dry their food waste in the sun. Fortunately for me, my apartment has an easier solution: the food dryer. 

This is in the kitchen sink, where you have a garbage disposal. But look inside:

Gross. The food goes in, you shut the top and it goes around like a salad spinner and dries off the food. Then you take it to the yellow bin outside. Or, like most people, you have a food composting container nearby and you put it in there until you're ready. I need to get one of those!

Can anyone guess what that red thing is?

If you guessed advanced air freshener, you're right!
Inside there are 3 different scents.
I don't know what this says. Jim followed my lead and just pressed buttons and now it's flashing at me. The room doesn't smell any different. Maybe I should get some refils when we go to Costco today. That's right-Costco trip is ON!

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