Monday, January 19, 2009

Exercise, snow, and Seoul

All last week was a base exercise where every unit practices real world attack scenarios. You cannot call anyone, go anywhere other than work and home, and you have to work insanse hours. This is Andy in his chemical gear. They have to wear the gas mask all day along with the chem outfit, boots, and bullet proof vest that covers his flight suit. There is a base wide inspection in April so they will have a week long exercise each month until stuff! The other morning I woke up to snow!! I was so excited. This is the view from our living room window.

This last weekend we drove to Seoul. With nearly 15 million people in the city you can only imagine the traffic. We drove which was a big mistake, but learned our lesson and will be taking the subway from now on. It took 3 hours to get into the city and only an hour home. You can't see it, but the Seoul tower is lit up behind us in the photo.
Tyler is a big hit with the Korean people. They LOVE babies!! Everywhere we go men, women, teenagers, you name it; stop to look at him with hopes of getting to hold him. We were on the subway; which was crowded to say the least and people called home to say there was an American baby next to them. They would push their way through the crowd to get close. Our waitress at the restaurant would stop by our table every 5 minutes asking if we wanted a refill and then take about 10 minutes to play with him...our cups were never empty! Anyway, you can't see it here, but there are about 10 people surrounding Tyler just staring and smiling...this is as close as we'll ever get to being famous :) haha
We went to the Coex Mall downtown Seoul which is one of the largest malls in Asia. It is all underground and pretty cool. They have a movie theater, gym, aquarium, and so much more all beneath the surface. Some quick observations about Koreans: 1.) Women LOVE to wear heels...and I'm talkin' high high heels! 2.) They are pretty open people...simple bumps into each other don't require an excuse me. With 47 million people in the country it happens so often; they are just used to it. 3.) They love to smoke...period! 4.) They love in point! And they think that all babies like to hear funny clicking noises...they must teach that in school or something. 5.) They all assume that you understand attempts to talk slow or use hand gestures...they just start talking even if you tell them you don't understand. 5.) They are aggressive drivers....we've already had some near death experiences!
We love how most restaurants post either photos or real demonstrations of their food. This is a typical display in one of the windows. On another note; we walked to our neighborhood market yesterday and noticed some unique items. They really love their squid and joke there. I've seen so many in the markets I'm kind of used to it now. They also love eel...yum! In the market we were equally intrigued to see dried squid next to the dried seaweed right next to the dried fruits and nuts. I guess anything goes :)
Tyler's first experience with ice cream
We also went to the Korean War Memorial right next to the Yongsan Army base we stayed at. It was pretty incredible.
The huge wall of names left of Americans who died in the war...all 54,246 from 1950 to 1953 which is significantly higher from our current war in Iraq with less than 3,000 since our invasion in 2003. I was not aware and was shocked at the figures.

Tyler and Dad having fun testing out the North Korean Army equipment.

1 comment:

Texas Bucks said...

Hey! So did you and Tyler decide to move over there for the year too?? I'm so outta the loop! What a fun experience! Let me know when you get a chance.
Talk soon,
Ashley :)