Thursday, March 31, 2011


Sorry, it's been a while. I went to Thailand. I have a bajillion pics to edit, but I'll post as soon as I can.

We arrived in Bangok on March 20, travelled to Koh Samui, Khao Suk National Park, Railay, Phuket (and a few stops in between), and back up to Bangkok for a day, returning to Korea on March 30. I have to promote Gecko's Adventures for the FANTASTIC tour. We narrowly missed the horrible flooding and managed to get proper sunburns despite rain nearly every day. The tour covered lodging and all travel- trains, ferries, tuk tuks, vans, taxis, etc. for 10 days and 9 nights. Every place we stayed exceeded my expectations based on the cost of the trip. I would definitely travel with this company again.

I loved it. :0)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

English OB/GYN

A friend of mine recommended an English-speaking OB/GYN in Hannam (near Itaewon in Seoul).

I was glad to be able to go before I head home to being unemployed and uninsured indefinitely and wholly unable to afford birth control. By the way, you can stock up on 6 months' worth of the Korean pill for 6,000 won per box. Just ask for 피임약 at the pharmacy. Write it down if you can't say it.

Unfortunately, your lovely teacher's medical insurance doesn't cover any women's health procedures, testing, regular checkups, etc. so it's stupid expensive (over 150,000 KRW) to get your yearly exam done in Korea. But what choice do you have?

The cool thing is that they use mini cameras and/or sonogram to check you out, which is really interesting if you've never seen your own insides before. Or really horrific if you're not expecting it and the doctor says, "Look here," gesturing to the horror flick on a screen you hadn't noticed before. Eep! (They're totally gonna give me copies of the pictures of my cervix along with my records to take home, and I'm totally gonna show 'em around because I need others to share in my shock, too.)

Here's the doctor's Web site:

You can set up an appointment by phone or email, and when you arrive at Yaksu station by subway, give the offices a call and ask them to give directions to your taxi drivers.

My only complaints are that it's really busy and rushed on Saturdays (the only time I can go in since I don't live in Seoul), the staff throws TONS of printed information at you and rushes through explanations of whatever is happening or could happen to your body, and they're REALLY pushy about the Gardasil "cervical cancer vaccine" shot (which has not been tested for whether booster shots will be needed or when, but that's a diatribe for another post, perhaps).

Best of luck. Tell your friends.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Subway Inspiration Tuesday: Tri-ku

Here's the order in which I wrote them, though I like them just as well mixed up any way and singularly.

Some will leave a mark.
I really wish you hadn't.
*Sigh* Can't I forget?

When I think of you,
I can only hope that you
... are miserable.

Wish I were higher,
But sometimes that's how things fall.
*Shrug* I'll try later.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Dispatches from the Edge review

A good read, though not spectacular. What really struck me was this paragraph in the epilogue about Dia de los Muertos:

Oaxaca, Mexico- Oaxacans believe that the souls of infants come back first, and at their graves there is only sadness. At one child's headstone, I watch an elderly woman relight candles that keep blowing out in the wind. She's all alone. Parents of children tell no stories about their babies. The joy of their birth makes their sudden death that much harder to bear. At older people's graves, however, there is drinking and laughter. Funny tales about moments they shared.

I had never thought about it much, but upon reflection of the funeral services and wakes I've attended, I realize how true this is. It's interesting to me.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Earth to Janny

We have a 5-year-old commonly discussed in the teachers' office as "The Space Cadet" because even when she's in class, she's never really there. She was recently tested for ADD and we were informed, "She doesn't have ADD. She just has difficulty focusing in class.... And so she won't be treated." To which we all cock our heads to the side and raise an eyebrow. What exactly *is* ADD by the way?