Weekly Photo Challenge: Urban

I was very excited to see this week’s photo challenge theme. I consider myself to be an urbanite. I love the traffic, the tall buildings, the noise and the modernity of the cities I’ve visited and lived in. Here are some photos of some of the cities I have been to and adored.

Helix Bridge in Singapore

A narrow street in Kuching, Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Seoul as seen from 63 Building

 

 

Kicking it Korean Style in Portland

Moving from Korea didn’t necessarily mean we would have to give up our Korean lifestyle. Most major cities in North America have some of the foods and other things you would have in Seoul. While we were in Portland we managed to dive a little into our Korean side.

There are a couple of places in downtown Portland where you can choose from a variety of food trucks to eat from. One of these trucks offers a bit of Korean fusion food. At Boolkogi Taco, they take the sweet tasting bulgogi beef and put it in, you guessed it..tacos.

They were small, but quite tasty. Two tacos and a soft drink was $6. Not bad for lunch.

Another Korean activity we enjoyed while living in Seoul was karaoke. Karaoke in Seoul consists of renting  a private room for you and your friends. Voicebox in Portland also offers private rooms.

Once in the room, the process is pretty simple.

First, you choose a song from one of the song books.

Next, belt it out for your friends listening satisfaction.

It’s nice to know that moving from Seoul doesn’t mean we have to say goodbye to Korean culture for good. Korean culture can be found in most major cities in North America. It was nice to have experienced some of it in Portland.

7 Things I’ll Miss About Seoul

1. Transportation in Seoul is cheap, extensive and easy to use.

2. Seoul has a number of great palaces to explore how Korea used to be, especially for its royalty.

3. Street food in Korea is inexpensive and tasty.

4. The city hosts a number of festivals throughout the year. My favorite has always been the Seoul Friendship Fair.

5. The mighty Han River.

6. The friends we have made from around the world.

7. I’ll miss the challenges and joys of teaching. As well as the amazing children.

Bonus: I’ll definitely miss my home church here. I’ll miss everything from the community of my small group to the challenging teaching times and everything in between. If you need a home church while in Korea check out Onnuri English Ministries (www.onnurienglish.org).

For those of you who have lived here, currently living here or have visited Seoul; what do or will you miss about Seoul?

Moving in South Korea

Ahhh….The cardboard box! Is there a greater symbol in the world that represents moving? The act of packing up your earthly belongings and moving them from one location to another can be summed up in a light and practical recyclable container. Last week we used a number of boxes as it was moving week for us. We sold and donated things we didn’t need, want or couldn’t bring with us. We boxed up the irreplaceables and shipped them and everything else will be brought on our backs and carried in our hands to the airport.

The last time we moved was actually within Seoul. At that time the cardboard box was not a symbol for us. The ladder-lift truck is a more accurate symbol for moving in Korea. Most people live in high-rise apartments. This makes moving a little more difficult. Instead of going up an down the elevator you can hire a ladder-lift truck. These trucks have a platform  that can reach a window in your apartment. Items are then placed on the platform and lowered to the moving truck below.

Both the cardboard box and the ladder-lift truck are symbols of moving. Both sum up the practical side of packing yourself, your family and your belongings up and relocating them elsewhere. The emotional side of moving to another place is a different story.