Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Blog 44 - 22nd June

The summer solstice coincides with the first day of the monsoon season today and true to form, the rain has started and is forecast to continue for the next 7 days.

The Royal Asiatic Society of Korea comprises expats and Koreans and hosts a garden party for its members every year. The venue alternates between the home of the American Ambassador and the home of the British Ambassador. This year it was at the British Embassy. Tradtional dancers and drummers provided wonderful entertainment against the backdrop of an English mansion, so funny to see here in Seoul. Sometimes this type of music can be a bit boring, especially as we have seen this type of performance quite a bit, however, this time it was short and sweet and a gorgeous sunny afternoon.

Each year the Ambassadors' wives all dress up in traditonal hanboks and have some fun at the Blue House, the presidential home. A few of us were invited to be in the audience. This man's hat looks like an Australian bushman's fashion to keep the flies away!

We were there in plenty of time to see the rehearsal. As none of these people are professional models, it was very funny seeing the bossy young woman at the back, trying to get them into some knd of order.

It is pouring outside and luckily I am home all day working in preparation for our European holiday. Stay posted...

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Blog 43 - 12 June

Life has been busy with university assignments for my master's degree, working, entertaining guests and life in general. I just have to brag and let you know that I got a high distinction plus for my last paper - I was pretty chuffed! Perhaps I was inspired by the Buddhist talk we attended last week. We've been to a few of these and have found them interesting and thought-provoking. When in Rome.....

Damien and I really enjoyed having our dear friend Roy and Yangli visit us from their home in Zhuhai, China, for a week in early June. Their apartment is along the beachfront to the far right in this photo.

We had lunch at Passion 5 - a must for any bread loving people and the best patisserie in Seoul - it was recommended by a Frenchman so how could you go wrong?

I'm not too sure about blog protocol, however, I've included a link from another blog as I cannot find an English site.

Damien, Roy and Bob spent hours climbing Gwanak San near our home. Here is Damien about to reach the summit.

Coffee at Hoam House across the road from our apartments to say goodbye to Roy and Yangli with Bob, Pilar and Jennifer. Summer is wonderful especially in the evenings when Seoul really comes to life.

A home like this is an amazing site in Korea and we were lucky to be invited to Mary Jane and Jinho's housewarming in Paju . No people and paddy fields - bliss!

It took one hour to drive there and three hours for the return trip. For some unknown reason Saturday afternoon traffic here is the worst of the whole week. Here is the link to Mary Jane's business -

Food was a work of art as were the flower arrangements - too good to touch!

Damien and I spent a leisurely afternoon wandering around Pyeongchang dong visiting some great galleries. Here is Damien on the roof top cafe of the Gana Gallery with his iced latte looking like somebody out of 'the Blues Brothers' with his new hat. Wonder what the sculpture of the woman behind is thinking!