Monday, April 13, 2015

What a weekend-Greg and Cindy got married (bonus material: A quick rambling on Fast and Furious 7)

Our friends Greg and Cindy had an almost secret wedding. No one really knew they were dating, but here they are getting married. It was a very fun event, as Korean weddings always are. We took the subway and as we got closer to the venue, more and more people who we knew who were also going to the wedding were getting on the subway.

Grace, Ruby, Even, August and Sue
In a typical Korean wedding, guests get their picture taken with the bride before the ceremony. The bride has a special room for this, the groom just wanders around greeting the guests.

Greg and me

We got our picture with Cindy in the special get-your-picture-with-the-bride-room. Cindy is the girls' school nurse. She and Grace have gotten to know each other this year

We also got a picture taken with Sue.
Sue and I drive to work together every day
August and Grace tickling Ruby before the ceremony

The ceremony is usually very short. There were vows and blessings and announcements in both Korean and English.

One of the best parts was when our music teacher, Laura, and our kindergarten teacher, Mark, sang a song. You MUST listen:

After bowing to each other, to Cindy's parents and to the guests, it was time for the reception.

We all walked upstairs to the buffet

the buffet even had sushi with sprinkles.

Pictures! Above is Kristina, Katie, me and Laura and also a picture of me and Sue.
Below is one of those optical illusion things where you can't tell if I'm a giant or a tiny person (Katie bent down for that picture-why?)

There are plenty of wardrobe changes during a Korean wedding. Cindy wore one dress for the pictures, one for the ceremony and they both dressed in traditional Korean Hambok for the reception.                                                  

Congratulations to Greg and Cindy!
home on the subway with these crazy foreigners
That night the fun continued when Jim and I took my winnings from the NCAA March Madness bracket (don't know if you heard but, I was the ONLY one to pick Duke to win it!) and went out on a date.

We had amazing steak at Plate 607 and brownies at I'm Home on cafe street in Jukejong.

After dinner we walked to the movie theater and had to pass through Emart. I don't like to actually shop at Emart, but there is always something interesting to see at Emart. This time we saw this huge coconut crab:

And a tank filled with very fashionable horseshoe crabs:

Part of our date we worked on the angles of our selfie-we were trying to get a picture of the cherry blossoms, but you can't really see those.

We saw the movie Fast and Furious 7 in 4D. 4D means the seats move and wind blows in your face and things like that, this was a perfect movie for those effects.

This is the movie we saw because, in general, there's typically only 1 or 2 movies in English playing here. There's something nice about having only one option at the theater. There's no discussion about who wants to see what, no contemplation and, best of all, no regrets. If I had chosen to see the movie in the US over, I don't know, whatever else is playing right now, I probably would have regretted it. But since it's the only option here, it was great. Here were my favorite parts, not in any order and not spoiling anything for you:

  • They jump out of airplanes in their cars (like they drive the car out of an airplane and it's got a parachute on it)
  • To get a person from one car to another during a high speed chase, the two cars do donuts next to each other and she jumps out of one car window into the other
  • The bad guy and the good guy drive in their fast and furious cars and end up facing each other. They go, Chicken style, as fast as they can and crash head on to each other, get out of their totalled cars without injury and fight (is Volvo making fast and furious cars now? because that was a full head-on crash and they were fine)
  • They've been chasing the bad guy, they finally get him, when he gets out of his fast and furious car, all he has is a pipe so the good guy puts his gun away and gets a pipe. I guess you really can bring a knife to a gun fight if the circumstances are right
  • They jump a car from the penthouse of one building into the penthouse of another building and then another building
  • At one point, the Rock needs to "go to work" because the city needs saving, but he's in the hospital because he fell out of a 4th floor window and broke his arm in 2 places. He just gets up, flexes his muscles and the cast breaks off of him, and he is good to go. 

Monday, April 6, 2015

Easter 2015

It's that time of year again-another round of egg roulette. First, a review of the rules. Each pair faces off with one dozen eggs. The dozen consist of 8 hard boiled eggs and 4 raw eggs. Then you and your opponent take turns smashing eggs on your head. The first person to smash two eggs on their head is the loser. (spoiler alert: I'm the champion this year!)

Here is Grace vs. Ruby and me vs. August

Saturday we had the Easter party at school. Eggs were searched for and potluck food was eaten. The forecast said it was going to rain, so the eggs were hidden in the school (too bad it was actually a beautiful, sunny day-no one seemed to mind that we were indoors). Older kids in the library and younger kids in a classroom. Again this year each child had a specific egg type to look for (i.e. grace was looking for green eggs with a bumblebee sticker).

On Easter morning the kids found baskets full of actual Easter candy. The kids ate a LOT while Jim and I enjoyed the Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle together (I held my own!)

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Spring Break 2015: Hong Kong

Our trip to Hong Kong started with some bad attitudes. Our kids are too used to international travel, it's not even exciting to them anymore. And Augustine can really bug his sisters. We did our best to troll them buy specifically taking pictures of their bad attitude faces.

We arrived in Hong Kong Monday afternoon and got to the apartment we rented through airbnb. It was teeny-tiny, but had 3 bedrooms, a bathroom, kitchen and was right in the middle of Hong Kong.

Our first night we got together with friends from KIS who now live in Hong Kong. They took us for authentic Chinese food. We ordered a whole chicken and it came out, cooked and chopped up, head and all. Jim joked that he would give $5 to anyone who ate the head and poor August took that to heart. 

Tuesday we got on a ferry and visited Cheung Cheu Island. The ferry ride was nice, we paid $1 more for the "Luxury" seats and it was worth it because we got to sit out on the deck and get sunburns.

We wandered around the island for a bit and then took the fast ferry back and when we docked in Hong Kong, we went to Victoria Peak. There is a cable car that takes you-at a crazy incline- up to the top where you can see all of the city.

Wednesday we visited Hong Kong Disneyland! I did not think we would ever take our children to Disneyland twice in one year, but here we are. Everyone told us it was small, everyone was correct. Now I will tell you: it is small. It turns out that there's nothing wrong with that because aparently if you visit during the week, it's practically empty. We were able to just walk right on to rides. The girls and Jim rode Space Mountain 7 times. 7! SEVEN!

Thursday we divided up because I wanted to shop. Jim took August to Big Buddha. They took a cable car. Jim texted me while waiting in the very long line. He said it took almost an hour, so by the time it was his turn to purchase the tickets he wanted the better of the two. The "better" of the two was the car with the glass bottom. Ha. This is not better for Jim.

I took the girls to the Cat Street Market, which has antiques mixed in with junk (I mean, really, does a digital camera belong next to this stuff?).

That night we had dinner with our friends the Brayko's who moved to Hong Kong over the summer. It was so great to catch up.

Overall, Spring Break was excellent. The kids were great, Hong Kong was great. See for yourself, here's a video compilation of the trip: