Here’s a quick post on some highlights from Week 6 of my CLS Program!
Monday: Went to a PC 방 for the first time! Basically gamers in the U.S. have no idea what they are missing out on. It cost 3,200원 (3 U.S. dollars) to play basically any video game you could possible want for 2 hours long. If I was a Korean citizen it would have costed 2,400원 for two hours. Regardless, it is super cheap and it comes with a free drink of choice. I got green tea and my friends Peter and Janelle got slushies. We went with two language partners who are students at 전남대 (Jeonam University). They taught us how to play some very popular Korean games.

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One of those games is called 오버워치 (Overwatch) and it is a strategy team game where you are sci-fi like characters on a mission. You have to shoot down the opposing team to win. There are also head sets so you can talk to your team mates as you play.

I actually got a little nauseous playing Overwatch, which was interesting because I have been fine in the past playing games like Call of Duty.

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What’s really cool about these places is that you can order just about any food right from your computer. There are Korean snacks, hamburgers, ramen, you name it for a really cheap price. The hamburger was only 1,500 원 which is a little sketch… We ended up getting dinner after PC 방 and I got 육게장.

 

 

 

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“United 456, you have traffic at 5 o’clock, 7 miles!”

Also note that we went to a no-smoking PC 방. You have to be careful which ones you go to because some of them allow smoking. Also some are less clean and well lit than the one we went to.

Overall, I understand how Koreans can spend the entire day in the PC 방. Enter when it is bright outside and walk out in the complete darkness.

Oh also we got bingsoo (빙수) that night.

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인절미 빙수 which is powdered soybeans, sesame seeds and azuki beans with rice cakes over shaved ice. It has a nutty and savory taste that I really enjoy.

Tuesday: I went to a Kia baseball game! The Kia Tigers are the best baseball team in the entire country right now. Interestingly each region of Korea has teams that are named after companies, which also makes sense considering how much of an influence conglomerates have here in Korea. The game that I went to the Kia Tigers beat the SK Wyverns 11-10.

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Janelle and I took a taxi to get from her house to here. The taxi driver had like 6 screens surrounding him? One was a miniature television which he watches while driving?
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All the yellow dots in the crowd are actually those noise makers that you hit against each other. But the Koreans had these coordinated dance moves with them which was super impressive to see en masse.

I was invited by Peter and his host family and host brother. Janelle also went and she had gone to two games the previous summer and knew all the songs that the crowd sings. In Korean baseball games the crowd goes crazy and is super hyped, which 1) I have never seen a crowd that has maintained consistent energy for so long and 2) a crowd that went crazy over baseball, which in my opinion is a rather slow and repetitive sport. Anyways… each batter has a song that incorporates his name. There are also cheerleaders at the baseball game who hype up the crowd.

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In the rear of the field there are picnic tables, a sand pit and water slide for kids. People brought some serious picnics. Peter’s host dad got us fried chicken and kimbab.
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Peter’s host dad also got us this giant hotdog on a stick which was wrapped in a sugary pastry and topped with ketchup and mayo. So good but so bad for you. 

We ended up leaving after the 7th inning and that was around 9:30. The first inning started at 6:30, so yes baseball games are rather slow. But I had a ton of fun and was super grateful to get the invite because going to a Kia game was on my summer bucket list.

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Janelle, me, and Peter.
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With Peter’s host brother who is adorable. He also plays baseball. 

Wednesday: We had our annual RD meeting and Peter took some funny photos on my phone. It is crazy to think that we only have one more RD meeting because our last Wednesday will be our end of program ceremony.

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After the meeting I participated in a radio show where I was in a quizbowl team. We had to answer questions relating to Korean culture and music. Other participants from CLS sang for the radio, some did a speech, others introduced our program, etc.

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I also went to go eat 삼겹살 with a classmate and her language partner. After that we went to Gongcha (공차) and got bubble tea while working on a presentation. This past Monday we actually went around and asked 30 Koreans about their thoughts towards immigration and international marriages. I am thinking of doing a post on this later if I have time.

 

Thursday: After taekwondo I went and played soccer and then on a bike ride by myself. It was definitely some needed “me” time because I do not get much of that living in a city and in a host family with two little kids. Then the rest of the afternoon I spent studying for my weekly Korean test and prepping for the aforementioned presentation.

Sorry no photos from Thursday.

Friday: The kimbab I ate on Friday must have gone bad sitting in the heat of the restaurant because I got a horrible stomachache from it and was back and forth to the bathroom all Thursday night and into Friday. So right after class and eating lunch I left for home right away to rest some before my host family and I went out to eat at a buffet dinner and then go for a walk around a lake. We also went grocery shopping together which was honestly the most fun activity of the day along with the walk around the lake. I like doing simple activities like that with the family because it makes me feel closer to them and reminds me of doing it with my own family in the U.S.

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Here’s the host family dog who is so cute and greets me late at night when everyone else is sleeping. (These past few days I have been coming in rather late because I was working on projects and studying with friends, or going to baseball, etc). However, this dog also routinely pees right outside my door or in the middle of the kitchen. I stepped in the pee on Thursday and I think that was my third time doing so in the last few weeks. I guess I need to walk more carefully around the house.

Stay tuned!

One thought on “Week 6 Recap

  1. Alexi…you seem to do more in a week than most people do in a month! Your blog posts make we want to visit Korea and do everything – but especially eat. Maybe we can go to some Dartmouth baseball games together.

    Like

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