The Meat Restaurant

There is a restaurant in our town called the Meat-Restaurant that provides a unique and fun eating experience.  It is a buffet-style restaurant but not exactly the type of buffet you may imagine.  The buffet tables offer a large variety of raw meat, raw octopus, vegetables, side dishes, soup, rice, sauces, and salad.  You choose what you would like to eat and cook the raw things yourself on the grill that is built into your dining table.  To prevent wastefulness, there are signs posted in the restaurant that you will be fined if you don't eat what you take and cook.  This restaurant is very popular with Americans living here and is definitely worth going back to.

"The only time to eat diet food is 
while you're waiting for the steak to cook."
~Julia Child

Lost In Translation

T-shirts with English writing on them are very common here.  You see them in stores, in the markets, and on people everywhere.  You have to wonder if the people buying and wearing these shirts even understand what they say.  You also have to wonder why the t-shirt companies don't always bother hiring an English-speaking person to proofread the shirts before they are printed.  Some of the things written on the t-shirts are incorrect but still understandable while others don't make any sense at all.  While shopping with Jennie for the past couple days, we came across some gems :)

Should that be "good choice"?

Without the "y" ready is just read - totally different meaning.

Okay, sometimes the letter "c" has an "s" sound...

Did they just pick words to put on here?  And what's the purpose of that tiny center pocket?


That's right :)

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"English is a funny language; that explains
why we park our car on the driveway
and drive our car on the parkway."
~Author Unknown

Dulce, Our Sweet Star

Our puppy, Dulce, is an fantastic little dog and we have some recent photos and videos to share!  We adopted her as a puppy in 2009 from the Rat Terrier rescue organization, Ratbone Rescues.  She will be 2 years old in July this year.

She poses so well for photos!

She doesn't like toys that contain stuffing but look at those apologetic eyes :)

She knows how to do some cute dog tricks!

And once in a while she does something amazing!  The other day, Johnnie was playing with a deck of cards and Dulce was picking them up so we decided to see if she could pick out a specific card.  She chose my secret card on the first try!

"He is your friend, your partner, your defender, your dog.  
You are his love, his leader, his life.  
He will be yours, faithful and true, to the last beat of his heart.  
You owe it to him to be worthy of such devotion.
~Author Unknown 

Happy Easter!

Being "in the future" on the other side of world from family, we got to celebrate Easter before them :)  It was a beautiful day and it was wonderful having Jennie here to celebrate the day with us!  After attending a church service on base this morning, we went to an Easter buffet at the Officer's Club.

There was an unending supply of champagne and orange juice for mimosas :)

There were tables full pastries, cake, pies, cookies, and fruit.

There was a huge selection of food ranging from biscuits and made-to-order omelets to mashed potatoes and hand-carved prime rib.

The Easter Bunny made an appearance... or at least it was an attempt at the Easter Bunny.  This character's perpetually-surprised face and odd frontal kangaroo pouch just didn't seem quite right.

After our lunch we decided to go out for the day and explore the Pyeongtaek Lake Tourist Complex.  On a map, the water appears to be an extension of the bay that connects to the Yellow Sea but it's technically an artificial lake because of manmade embankments.

Johnnie, Jennie, and Dulce

Street food vendors everywhere!

Horse and buggy rides

Wind surfing

Paddle boats

Colorful tulips

Cherry blossom trees in full bloom

"The resurrection gives life meaning and direction and the
opportunity to start over no matter what your circumstances."
~Robert Flatt

Going Japanese

Johnnie's sister has arrived for a week-long visit!  We are going to try to cram in as many sightseeing and restaurant experiences as we can before she leaves.  She arrived last evening so the first order of business was dinner.  We walked over to a bustling shopping center near our house that has a variety of restaurants to chose from.  We decided to try a Japanese Seafood Grill with a cozy atmosphere and full of loud, young business people.  It was a fun and interesting meal :)

A spicy clear broth soup to start.

Some neon colored crunchy balls that tasted like kid's cereal?

The menu didn't have any English translations so we took a chance and just pointed at some things to order.  Here is one of our choices - if anyone can translate, we'd love to know what we ate!

Being a seafood restaurant, we know it's not beef or pork.  
We think it may be snail.

This choice turned out to be a really tasty shrimp dish.

This is a seafood and vegetable 'pancake' that was very good!

"You only live once; but if you live it right, once is enough."
~Adam Marshall

Black Rice

While in the Korean supermarkets, I always hit up the pasta aisle and the rice aisle because of the wonderfully different varieties of both that are available.  On a recent trip, I decided to buy the most obviously different rice I could find - black rice.  I'm sure black rice is available in the States somewhere as it is gaining popularity as a 'superfood'.

Black rice is really more of a very dark purple color which is more apparent after it is cooked.  The husk of the rice contains the color while the inside of the uncooked rice is actually white.  I've been in a few local restaurants that cook their plain white rice with a small amount of black rice mixed in to add some color.  It is more often used for decoration or desserts since it is more expensive than other rices.

According to an article on, black rice "contains the antioxidants known as anthocyanins, purple and reddish pigments (also found in blueberries, grapes, and acai) that have been linked to a decreased risk of heart disease and cancer, improvements in memory, and other health benefits."

Black rice has a similar taste and texture to brown rice.  It takes more water and more time to cook than white rice.  I soaked the dry rice for 30 minutes and then cooked 1 cup of rice with 2 1/4 cups water for 30-40 minutes until the water was absorbed.   A long process that had a delicious, healthy outcome!

Dulce loves rice.  It's the only occasional people-food treat she gets other than fruits and veggies.   Since she waited so patiently at my side while I took dozens of rice photographs, she got a reward of a few bites :)

"Rice is the best, most nutritive, and unquestionably
the most widespread staple in the world."

A View of Seoul

Seoul is the capital and the largest city in South Korea.  Almost half of South Korea's population lives in the vicinity of Seoul.  It is the political, financial, educational, and cultural hub of the country.  Seoul is a beautiful city that is much like any other large city in the world.  Its amenities and neighborhoods have a lot of offer both locals and tourists.  Luckily for us, it's only an hour's ride or drive away :)

Youngsters riding skateboards, bikes, and shooting some hoops.

Lunch - who needs a restaurant when you can sit in the grass?

The National Assembly Building

A street lined with cherry blossom trees.

Love the little boy's lion respirator mask :)

Say "kimchi"!

A park by the Han River.

A view of downtown

The Gyeongbokgung Palace and the president's house is in the back right.

A street in the Insadong cultural district - great shopping!

A section of the Dongdaemun shopping area.

A section of the Cheonggyecheon river park in the Dongdaemun area.

"Life moves pretty fast.  If you don't stop and
look around once in a while, you could miss it."
~Ferris Bueller