Wednesday, March 18, 2009


The past couple of days have been pretty hard without Matias. There were many times when everyone around us was speaking Korean with no translating that we would just look at each other and have our own conversation or joke about something. There have been many times that I have wanted to turn to him to say something and then realized he wasn't there anymore. It is really hard to be in a country where the language is so completely opposite than yours. We don't have similar roots or similar words. Had I been in France or Spain or anywhere similar, it would be easier to understand what everyone was talking about without even needing to know the language simply because they are related languages. 

My host parents are really sweet though and know that I love beef, and they said yesterday during breakfast that for lunch we would go out to this town about an hour away to our west and go to a famous place to eat beef! First we stopped off at this place that is famous for its green tea, and 4 of us walked around the grounds. It was simply beautiful! 

Unfortunately, I thought that the beef restaurant was located here, so I would get to taste the green tea then, but we went into the car at which point it was too late to go try some tea (it costs money to go in). Oh well. From there we headed to this area that had a flea market (apparently it happens every Tuesday). Parts were similar to an American flea market, but then you'd walk into a section of it, and people were sitting on the ground selling items on the floor. It was pretty sad to see. I didn't buy anything, but it was fun to look around. While some of us were wandering around the outdoor flea market, our hosts were buying the beef at this one shop. 

^ Easy to tell what was sold! :) But then we walked across a small street inside the flea market and went into this restaurant. They had...little grills I guess that you put the raw meat onto and cook yourself. It was 8 of us that went together, and they had two of the little grills (i wouldnt call it exactly a grill.... it had a flame underneath and you put the meat on this platter thing above the flame just dont know the proper name) and so one person from each side put the beef on the platter and turned it at the right time. The pieces of beef were really small so no knifes or anything were required just chopsticks. On the other end of the table, they apparently were eating pieces of raw beef in the beginning. I was invited to have a piece, but I said no. Growing up in America with all the warnings about not cooking beef enough it was hard to imagine eating raw beef. Ji Sul said that since the beef was so fresh it was okay... but I think they just don't understand salmonella. 

In about an hour i am teaching english again at the middle school. I have set up lesson plans for all the groups i am teaching today. I am writing everything for each class in this journal that i have. Since I am teaching 5 different groups its important to write down what im doing for each class so that I will remember. 

^ Funny shirt from the flea market :)



  1. Oh man! i wish i coulda joined in for the beef nummies! I'm quite the geek and watch anime as the stereotype goes. And the type of food/style that you went to is called yakiniku in japanese. It's exactly as you described; small strips of meat/veggies that you cook in front of you and dip in sauces and use chopsticks. I hope to visit a place like that one of these days, and not just some American copy of it.

  2. no veggies with the beef.. well after the beef they put like some type of vegetable that you could eat grilled but it didnt go with the beef. and no sauce to dip in either :)