May 2012

By , May 20, 2012 7:57 pm

I headed out around 8:30 one morning this week south of town for a nice bike ride. It had been raining almost every other day and I decided to take advantage of a little nice weather.  This beach is the same one I went to a couple weeks before on a Sunday, although that day I took the motorcycle. I’ve been down to this place maybe 5 times in the last month in preparation for the Ulsan Inferno – an annual motorcycle rally held in June. I’m helping to plan the route this year and won’t be competing.  Having taken 1st place in 2010 and 2nd place in 2011 I thought this year I’d rest and let others have some glory. It turns out that planning is quite a bit more difficult. The last two years, we allowed bicycles to compete and the point structure should have given them an equal shot at winning. It didn’t so I volunteered to help set the course and points.  That means riding a bike myself to test the route and degree of difficulty. Previous Inferno rallys only considered distance and this year I’m making elevation and altitude a factor that gives bikes more points for having to work harder.   So this bike ride I took was part for fun and part to test the route – I went about 53km (31miles) round trip – only took me about 3 hours to do it and we stopped at several places to see the sights.

The above shot is JinHa beach. It’s going to be our starting point in the rally – we’ll truck bicyles down to start and the real rally is on the way home. Our riders, therefore will do a little more than half what I did, so I felt pretty good about doing round trip in a lot less time than they’ll get to do one way plus some off-the-bike activities.   This beach is also one of the places where the world wind surfing association comes every year for their yearly competitions.  Two weeks ago we watch the pros out on the waves. This has always been something I’ve wanted to try but being a land-lubber from the prairie in the USA that just wasn’t possible.  A few shots here from the competition – I don’t don’t know these people are or where they’re from but watching pros do their sport – they always make it look so easy – made me want to try.  I might have to get back out here on a weekend when I’m not planning a rally and get some lessons.

It was really windy the day I took these pictures – the sand from the beach was blowing everywhere. But the surfers were screaming across the waves.  I simply have to try this.

Last week the in-laws were in town. I haven’t seen most of them for a while – seems like everytime MyeongHee wanted to go I was in the midst of planning something or working something else (still working on two websites, one newspaper, and one major annual event) so she’d go alone to her mother’s house.  This past weekend they all came to our house.  Not much news – whatever English any of them ever learned seemed to have dropped off. ( I practice Korean more than they have a chance to practice English but I still don’t have enough to carry a conversation.)   The youngest member of the clan, GaEun, is almost 3 years old and very cute.  She was the center of attention. The fun part of watching her grow is that her parents aren’t limiting her to traditional gender roles – which is strange given this very sexist society. Anyway, she likes cars and they indulge her. She’s not into dolls and they don’t force her. Some sociologist should have a field day documenting how this turns out.

GaEun and Grandma play with cars on the living room floor


playing with cars

And if it wasn’t cars it was smartphones.  Nearly everyone has a smartphone here (except grandma) and little GaEun knows there the games are on everyone’s phones. I keep a few kids games on my mine for the students I teach English to and she loved those. Here she is below playing on MyeongHee’s phone in her peejays.  She loved playing Triominoes, the game I developed earlier this spring.

Smartphones are everywhere in Korea and GaEun know how to find all the games

And of course I have to have dogs in the pictures. Not sure how we got away with not having Sparky in the shot – she gets jealous when anyone does something she does, but I got a picture of my sweet wife and my best dog.

MyeongHee and SaTang

One Response to “May 2012”

  1. Peggy says:

    Great Picture of you Marty! Your weather looks like its looking up. Miss you. Peg

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