Tuesday, May 16, 2006

mon putain d'ordinateur: mise à jour

I took my computer in to a shop in Itaewon-- a place called Jonny Computer-- and talked with Jonny himself, a Korean guy who speaks fluent English but who spoke with me in Korean. Friendly gent, almost doctor-like in manner. We went over my computer's history and current problem; Jonny took mental notes and asked a few questions. Data recovery, it turns out, is hellishly expensive: Jonny quoted a figure of W300,000 (about $300, US), to which I politely said "No fookin' way," which immediately led to a discussion of the next best option.

Jonny cracked a smile when I shamefacedly announced that my computer was a 1999-era Mac G4 with... with... a ten gig hard drive (Rory's already made fun of me in the comments to a previous post, but as the world knows, I crap bigger than Rory does). He said the smallest drive he had in stock was a 40-gig. The cost for purchasing the drive and performing the replacement was W90,000, which I could live with. I don't have the proper tools at home to effect the installation myself (including that nifty little anti-shock grounding wire), so I didn't mind coughing up the extra bucks to have a pro do it right. It's not always a good idea to do it yourself if you're not sure what you're doing.

Jonnie told me to come back in about an hour, so I strolled across the way to What the Book, the foreign bookstore that sells new and used books. I found two magnificent ones: an introduction to the New Testament by Catholic scholar Ray Brown, who was a giant in his field; I also got a book on Tibetan debate, which will fill in some massive gaps in my below-rudimentary knowledge of Buddhist philosophy. I also bought two other books: Karen Armstrong's short little tome, Buddha, and Alan Moore's graphic novel V for Vendetta, a story I'd rather read instead of seeing the recent movie.

A bright, sunny, delightful day... but now I'm back in the office and getting ready to do some more test rating. I will have rated over 70 students by Thursday, and will be paid peanuts for my work. Still, it's a bit of extra money in the bank, and considering the hit my bank account just took (books plus computer repair), the extra money is welcome.

And that's probably it for my splurging-- for a long, long while. Christmas 2006 will see the end of major credit card debt; by 2007, the only debt left to me will be my massive Sallie Mae loan debt, and that's going to take decades (no, literally!) to pay off. The Sallie Mae payment plan is low-interest and divided into manageable monthly installments, which means I'll have the breathing room to start saving for the trips I'd been hoping to make this year, including a jaunt to Europe to see my French family and perhaps hit Switzerland for a long, long hike. 2007 will be, I hope, a better year for travel.


1 comment:

Kevin Kim said...

Foreigners all resemble each other. We've both lived here long enough to have absorbed that mindset; my guess is that we probably just didn't register each other on the street. Heh.

Seriously, though-- I was at Jonny Computer at around 2:30PM and then lumbered over to What the Book at about 2:45; stayed there a few minutes, got those books, then sat at a restaurant until almost 4PM. Went back to get my computer around 4-ish, then grabbed a taxi to Smoo straightaway.

When were you in the area?