Thursday, January 28, 2016

Think warm thoughts.

It's been a while! Like usual.
Christmas has come and gone, and so has our lovely vacation to Boracay Island in the Philippines.

It was so beautiful. And warm. Hot even.

I'm trying to conjure up what that felt like as I sit wrapped in blankets on the couch. We are just now coming out of a super cold spell here in Korea. On Sunday morning, when we left for church, it was 1 degree outside with a wind chill of negative 12.

You can all admire our dedication for getting out there anyway, but the truth is that we were signed up to teach the Sunday school class for the kids and had no choice. We have been known to conduct a little home-church in our living room when weather or circumstances make me lazier than normal.  Josh prepares a lesson, I choose the worship songs off of you-tube, and we gather in our jammie-jam-jammerkins.

Is it normal to nickname pajamas?
I fear not.

Anyway, things started to warm up to above freezing today*, so I kicked the kids outside at the first opportunity.

Homeschooling with "indoor recess" and restless children can grate on one's nerves, as you might imagine.
I bribed them to stay out with hot chocolate, and indicated that I would be more generous with marshmallows the longer they stayed outside.

*To retain blogular accuracy, I should note that I wrote this post a couple of days ago, but didn't have time to upload pics until now.

One thing I've been grateful for during this cold streak is that our cars sleep in a garage that stays around 45-50 degrees. Without going outside we can get right into a car that doesn't need much warming up. It almost makes up for the fact that all the Korean drivers are always trying to kill me.

I realize that is a stereotype.

I stand by that statement.

Alex lost a couple of teeth a week or so ago, and as we were sneaking won under her pillow, I wondered what the Korean version of the tooth fairy is. In the US we have the fairy, in Spain there was a little mouse (Ratoncito PĂ©rez), and in Korea...I don't know.

So I made up a version in my mind and it was a Little Guy in the shape of a garlic clove who drives around on a motorcycle cutting everyone off and trying to kill me.

Alright, I just googled it.
If we are to believe everything we read on the internet, then here is the answer to the mystery:

Children in Korea throw their tooth on the roof of their house and sing, “Blackbird, blackbird, my old tooth I give to you.  Bring me a new tooth.”

I do wonder about the veracity of that, as the great majority of people here seem to live in towering apartment buildings. Not sure how they get their teeth up to the roof.

We have officially passed the halfway point of our Korean assignment. Time flies, eh? We still have no idea of where we will be moving this summer, but should hear something in the next month or two. In the meantime, if Kim Jung Un would just chill out with all his toys it would make our lives a bit easier. Every time North Korea is in the news, you can know that the folks here are working ridiculous hours and things become annoying.

And now, without further delay, we shall all take in the beauty of Boracay Island.
Fact: I did not know that the islands of the Philippines were so gorgeous.
Fact: I would never have thought to travel there.
Fact: One of Josh's co-workers told us about Boracay and we said: "Okay."

We were treated to amazing sunsets every evening.

We ate lots of food. A meal for the 4 of us ran around 15-25 USD.

Derek really wanted to try a coconut. He didn't like it.

Surf was higher at this beach on the north side of the island, but the colors were still perfect.

View from the top

Our favorite activity was a sail on a paraw. (it's a double outrigger sailboat)

Nothing but net...between our butts and the sea.

The water-- I can't handle the color of the water.

I mean, is this a pool or the Pacific?

Fruit shakes. Every day. Twice a day. Or more.
There's a whole mango in there.

Breakfast in Paradise was included with our hotel. I want to eat there every day for the rest of my life. 
I must call your attention to the little huts on the right. Those are the massage tents. At night, the drapes are lowered, the fans blow a little breeze, and Josh and I got 5 massages. We had some included in our package, and the extras we felt obligated to throw in because where else will you find an hour long massage for under 10USD. 

Derek enjoying a Cookies-N-Cream crepe.

This is one way to enter or leave Spider House restaurant.

Riding in a trike taxi. It's like a motorcycle with a sidecar.

This was on the ferry over to the island. In order to get to the Philippines, we took 1) A city bus to Incheon Airport in Seoul, 2) a 4-hour flight to Manila, 3) a 1-hour flight to Caticlan, 4) a 3-minute van ride to the ferry port, 5) a 15-minute ferry to Boracay, 6) a 15-minute van ride to the hotel.
Worth it.

 Aaaaand, now I want to go back.