Sunday, April 21, 2019

mostly Sunday images

Aside from the selfie of my exhausted face, I took only one other pic yesterday, and that was only because I knew my friend Bill Keezer is into flower pics. These were some pinker-than-usual cherry blossoms:

And here's my pinker-than-usual face, all sunburned except for my forehead, which was protected by my bandanna. I think this looks pretty funny:

My "gloves" started coming back as well:

Online correspondent Daeguowl (Paul Carver) politely insisted that the Yangpyeong Art Museum Cycling Certification Center was around by the museum, so I decided to put Paul's claim to the test. After lazily lounging until the early afternoon, I hiked around town and went over to where the modern-art museum was. Spiraling inward so as not to miss anything this time, I did eventually find the center's red telephone booth, as you see in the photos below:

It was a moment of grim victory to finally find that fucking center, but it was also frustrating. I'd circled that goddamn building several times in 2017 and somehow managed not to find it. Naver Map kept shifting the position of the center around, pulling me in fruitless circles.

I've walked back to Yangpyeong twice since 2017, so I think I've earned my stripes. Some weekend soon, I'll train back here with my Moleskine and add the certification stamp to my collection. I've been wanting to do that since 2017. Many thanks to Paul for the location tip.

The Buddha's birthday, called Seokga Tanshin-il or Bucheonim Oshin-nal in Korean (Vesak in Hindi), is the second week of May this year (it's always April 8 on the lunar calendar, which means the date always shifts on the solar calendar). The lanterns are already out:

I thought it might be best to get a shot of this building, which appears to be Yangpyeong's tallest landmark:

Not far from the above building and the train station was this spiffy couple, forever frozen in a posture of waiting:

Finding that cert center had been my big mission of the day. I was hungry for some Chinese for whatever reason, so I went searching for somewhere local. I found a place called In Hwa Ban Jeom. That place served some of the best damn tangsuyuk (sweet-and-sour pork) that I've ever had. Granted, their fried mandu was pretty standard, but the tangsuyuk was memorable. Take a look:

And here's the mandu:

A few things made the tangsuyuk amazing. First, the crunch. I've gotten so used to the declining quality of Chinese food in Seoul that I sometimes forget what it's like to taste sweet-and-sour pork that's actually crunchy. Second, the sauce. Lightly fruity but smooth and not gooey, the sauce did what it was supposed to do, i.e., play second fiddle to the fried pork. Third, the fruits and vegetables in the sauce. These were all a hell of a lot fresher than what I'm used to. I plucked out all the onions, but the cucumber, pineapple, and lychee all had some pop to them. Wonderful.

The lady running the restaurant proved to be very nice. I also could hear that half of her staff was actually Chinese. I wonder whether that had anything to do with quality control. I thanked the lady for a great meal and complimented her on her flavorful, crunchy tangsuyuk.

Pics of the resto's signage, in both Chinese and Korean:

And lastly, my usual motel's-eye-view pic of the river from my window (Room 302):

I might not come back to this motel. First, they charged me W65,000 for Saturday (a lot of places up their room rates because Saturday is often a high-traffic day, even for quieter motels like River House), although they did under-charge me for Sunday (W35,000 instead of the usual W45,000 for a river-view room). Second, the girl at the front desk today was a bit bitchy. "You're 302, right?" she asked brusquely as I was on my way out for my afternoon walk. I said yes. "Did you pay?" she then asked. I found that to be an insultingly stupid question. How the fuck else did I get my room key if not by paying? I stepped out and dumped a bagful of trash into a receptacle not far from the motel's main entrance, and the girl came running out when she heard the noise. "You can just put your bag of trash in front of your door, and we'll pick it up," she said. True, she could have worded that in a bitchier way, but this still felt like micromanagement. I smiled tightly, told her I'd do that next time (i.e., never, since I'd be leaving the following morning), and lumbered off to have a day, muttering angrily to myself. Third, when I came back from my walk, my room's door was hanging open. I knew I'd locked it, so the only immediate explanation was that a cleaning staffer had come in, then neglected to close the door after finishing cleanup. While I doubt this is a high-theft area, I was severely annoyed to come back to an open door. Complaining about the problem is useless now: as mentioned, I'm leaving tomorrow morning. There's no opportunity for the staff to do a do-over and redress the lapse in security. It's better just to take my business elsewhere.

Anyway, that's a brief narrative in pictures. I'll write a separate post soon about the adventure itself. Stay tuned.


  1. Enjoyable photo tour. You know, I think you are among the last of the big K-blogs left, dating from when I discovered the genre back in autumn of 2009. Kudos for keeping things alive in this sphere!

  2. Inspector,

    I appreciate the sentiment, and thanks for the visit. I never considered myself "big" among K-bloggers; my traffic never got beyond 300-500 unique visits per day, and now, I'd say my traffic is a fifth of that on a good day. All the same, thanks for the kind words and the encouragement.

    So I'm looking at your list of several blogs:

    Sorry for Not Blogging: last post = 2012
    Atlanta ROFTERS: last post = 2015 (not counting the one pre-dated 2020)
    My Olympus is-3 Photo Gallery: last post = 2011
    All Edges Gilt: last post = 2014, but taken over by some other entity

    That's quite a trail of death, man! What happened? I'd stick you on my blogroll if you were still blogging. Did the blogging become stale for you? Is it just that we've all switched to short-attention-span writing forums like Twitter? Is blogging now only for unembarrassed old farts who don't get that it's time to move on? Is Reddit everything? Enquiring minds want to know.

    Again, many thanks for the visit and the comments.



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