Blogs from Gangwon-do, South Korea, Asia - page 2


Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Gangneung February 8th 2018

I'm still sick. On Tuesday I called the USOC boss and she told me to come in to see the USA doctor. Unfortunately that entails a 40 minute bus ride on a "too warm" bus. Going from a warm dormitory to cold air to a warm bus triggers my coughing every time. The USA personnel examined me and felt it was better to see the other doctor at the other village (GVL - back closer to where I live). Apparently the doctor at PVL is an ortho doctor and wouldn't be there till the afternoon, and the doctor at GVL is internal medicine, so off I go for a 30 minute bus ride to GVL, and another coughing fit. The doctor at GVL did a thorough exam and wanted some tests done. He did a throat ... read more
Welcome Ceremony 2
Welcome Ceremony 3
Welcome Ceremony 4

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Gangneung February 4th 2018

The map is to show you the travel route via bus that I take every day to get from the dorm to work at PVL. Unfortunately dormitory living is conducive to the spread of viruses and bacteria. Right from the beginning (for me Jan. 22nd) people started getting sick. I avoided them, wore a mask, washed my hands, used hand sanitizer, got alot of sleep, drank lots of fluids - but the big bad virus got me anyway. On Friday I felt sick so I asked Kang, the Korean volunteer on Team USA, for help with the clinic. He made phone calls to see if I could avoid going to the clinic at GVL (I would need to take a bus). They told him I could go to the clinic at the hockey rink nearby our ... read more
The Polyclinic.
Mural inside Polyclinic.

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Gangneung February 1st 2018

I want to explain how we get to live at a university dormitory for such a long time. The Koreans have January and February off, so there are thousands of volunteers occupying 3 universities. Living in a dormitory has it's challenges though: dormitory etiquette, food, and transportation. My roommate Sabria & I changed rooms because we were with 2 Russian women that liked to stay up late. Now we are with Stephanie from China & things are much better. Unfortunately there's no lobby or area to hang out & talk, so people end up talking in the halls. And then there's the food. We used to get our food here with a paper meal ticket. Well, they changed that. Now we have to sign up on a website by 18:00 for the next day. This caught ... read more
My Team USA pin.
The Guest Houses.

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Gangneung January 29th 2018

Jan. 26: We had a day off after our training was finished so 4 of us decided to walk around town nearby the Catholic Kwondong University (CKU): Sabria (France), Stephanie (China), Tatjiana (Netherlands) & me. We walked to the river, had coffee, and went to lunch at Mom's Touch for burgers. (Tristan, a homework assignment for you: the Korean money is the won. 1 US dollar is 1000 won. I went shopping for some things for my room and spent 24,900 won. How much did I spend in US dollars?) The NOC assistants for Team USA are split: half for GVL and half for PVL. But, only 5 out of 7 showed up for PVL the first day. We aren't sure why. (Please see former blog entries for acronyms.) Jan. 27: Today we (the NOC assistants ... read more
Tatjiana exercising by the river.
Walkway across river.
Mom's Touch for lunch.

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Gangneung January 25th 2018

You know it's cold outside when even the Russian volunteers from Moscow are complaining about the cold. How cold? Here in Gangneung where we are living it has been -14C (Tristan, your homework assignment it to figure out how to convert from degrees Celsius to Fahrenheit. Also, at what temperature are the Celsius and Fahrenheit the same?) (I'm giving my grandson homework assignments while writing this blog.) In PyeongChang, in the mountains it was -20C. There is a high pressure system over western China that is supposed to ease soon. Wednesday, Jan. 24 We continued our training with an all day session. Many of us will be driving (me included) and we had to get our US driver's license, International Driver's license, and passport copied and sign forms for driver responsibility. The insurance is covered by ... read more
Athletes recreation room.
Athletes recreation area.
Dining Hall at Gangneung Village.

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Pyeong-Chang January 23rd 2018

Saturday Jan. 20 - Monday Jan. 22. After a grueling trip I finally made it. I had a 21 hour flight via Beijing to get here, Incheon Airport near Seoul, arriving 11:50 a.m on Monday, Jan. 22. I added a day by crossing the dateline (Tristan your homework assignment is to look this up). I met some other volunteers in the baggage claim area and we decided to travel together. Sabria (France) & I made our way to Seoul via subway, then to Jinbu station via 15:01 KTX train, which travels up to 300 km/hr (for those of your metric system challenged: take the first 2 numbers and multiply by 6; 30 x 6 = 180 mph). And the trains are sooooo smooth. We arrived at Jinbu station at 16:45 and met up with David (Switzerland), ... read more
KTX train station is Seoul.
Inside the KTX train.
KTX train.

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Pyeong-Chang January 18th 2018

In 2 days I will be on a flight to South Korea to volunteer for the Winter Olympics. My role is a National Olympic Committee Assistant to Team USA. My duties are (this is an excerpt from my acceptance letter): - assisting their assigned NOC/NPC delegation with translation, driving, office work and other related duties from the day of their arrival to departure; this could be from as early as the Pre-Opening of Olympic/Paralympic Village(s) to no later than the Closing of Olympic/Paralympic Village(s). - assisting the NOC/NPC Service Team to help the operation of the NOC/NPC Services Centre(s) in Olympic/Paralympic Village(s). - assisting NOC/NPC Assistant Team with the management of the NOC/NPC Assistant Programme. They refer to teams as "delegations". Basically I'm a Personal Assistant to Team USA. Many people have asked me how I ... read more

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Sokcho October 1st 2016

On our final morning in Danyang we awoke to steady rain which didn't look like it would let up anytime soon. We packed up our room, had breakfast and then set off towards Sokcho, via Gangneung. The majority of the trip from Danyang to Gangneung was on rural roads; it took about three hours and along the way we passed farms, mountains and industrial estates... We drove straight through Gangneung and headed on towards Unification (Tongil) Park which is just outside the city on the coast. Unification Park houses the North Korean submarine which was captured during the 1996 Gangneung Infiltration Incident. The submarine was used to transport a reconnaissance team to the South, but it all went wrong when they tried to collect the team and the submarine ran aground. The 25 North Koreans abandoned ... read more
US war ship, Unification Park, Gangneung
North Korean submarine, Unification Park, Gangneung
North Korean submarine, Unification Park, Gangneung

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do August 14th 2016

Today is day we go to Pyeongchang(hometown of Halahbujee, Harmonee and Ann). While most of the Lee and Hwang families are in Canada now, we have a few family members, Pyeongchang Aunt and Uncle, who still live in Pyeongchang so a visit to Korea wouldn't be complete without a trip back home. (Pyeongchang Aunt is cousins with Halmonee. Halmonee's mother and Pyeongchang Aunt's father were brother and sister.) We took subway to Gangbyeon Bus Terminal to purchase tickets early this morning. We didn't account for the long weekend* and tickets were sold out for morning and afternoon buses to Pyeongchang. The last train at 4:30p had a few seats open so we figured better late than never. *Monday Aug 15th is a national holiday in Korea - Gwangbokjoel - known as liberation day, the holiday marks ... read more
Halahbujee and familiar face from when he lived in Pyeongchang
Dinner with Pyeongchang Emo
Sad to see house we lived in is now a grocery store.

Asia » South Korea » Gangwon-do » Wonju August 11th 2016

Today is last day of bus tour. First stop was Yeongwol where King Danjong was exiled by his Uncle. King Danjong became King at age 12 when his father (son of King Sejong*) died at age 22. *King Sejong or King Sejong the Great is one of the best known figures in Korean history. He created the Korean language, hangul, and during his reign, Korea saw much stability and growth. He is the man on the 10,000 KRW bill. Lunch was good with an assortment of pretty much everything from fish, to meat to vegetables. But you had to sit on the floor again. Not the most comfortable position for those who are used to table and chairs. After lunch there was one last stop, Hanji Museum where we learned about the origins of paper and ... read more
Jon wants to take rock back as souvenir
Ann suggested this rock instead

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