Bringing the learning home (Australian Learning & Teaching Council)

South Korea

Bau Haus – Dog Cafe

Ah, okay. MY finals FINALLY finished! πŸ˜€ So time for some blogging!

I have so many adventures to tell you guys about, so let’s start with the recent one πŸ™‚


 

IF YOU ARE A DOG LOVER – MUST MUST MUST READ

First of all the name of the cafe isΒ Bau Haus and it’s inΒ Hongdae, just a station away from Sinchon, so it’s awesome.Β Basically you can feel like owning a dog, without the fuss of feeding and cleaning up after them.




I must say the idea intrigued me, and I wondered the insurance that needs to come with it ie. dog bites person or person bites dog etc. BUT nevertheless, it was a smart idea, I think.

They only offer Cold drinks for around 5000 KRW (AUD$5) upwards, so it is pretty decent since you can play with the dogs and stay for as long as you want. You can also buy them treats to win their puppy love. Oh yes, they love you more if you have treats of course. Little like bribing, so they have been taught well. πŸ˜€



The dogs are hug-able, pet-able, but not ride-able nor are they edible. πŸ˜›

Although in my mind I did.


Ride them, that is.

 

 

They are amazingly huge and furry and would give you love under one condition: Scooby Snacks. So you can judge their popularity by how FAT they are.

ν•˜ν‚€ is quite possibly the most popular of them all. His fur is like Chocolate (good enough to eat? Haha. Jokes. That’s for another blog entry :P) and he modestly begs for treats just by sitting next to you with his tongue out. I gave him like 5 by the end of the day πŸ˜€


 

 

I also love this guy.

The shopkeepers must have drawn eyebrows on his, which I found hilarious.


 

A few caution. Your coats are probably gonna be covered in doggie fur if you are petting them and such. Although they were smart enough to not put hot drinks on the menu, spillage do happen, dogs will be jumpin’ on tables and your lap sometimes (the small ones quite possibly), but they are all well-behaved.


Also I know what you’re thinking, they must stink right?

(Interesting fact = ‘Bau’ in Indonesian means Smelly :D)

Surprisingly not at all really.

The room is well air-conditioned with a lot of sprays and odour-killing technology.

If you are allergic to dogs…… I don’t know why you would want to come here.


Well. Maybe. Except. To die. A furry death.


 

 

I have hundreds of pictures, it’s a shame I can’t put them all here.

Each of them have different personalities and so yeah! pick out your favorite! πŸ˜€


 

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A reason why WAR is unlikely ~

I know this is a bit late, but I just finished my Final Exams so excuse me. :p

So, WAR! HEUGH! WHAT IS IT GOOD FOR? ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!

From my first sentence you should be able to deduct a few things about my life in Korea. You don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to deduce that life is quite likely to be normal and peaceful in Seoul and Sogang University if Ray was just finishing his Finals, and that he is probably going out to kill a few braincells with a few green bottles and magic liquor they call So-ju.

Not entirely correct. I was very stressed during exam times because Koreans are very hard-working and there is a curve for the grades. Of course, I always reminded myself that I was on exchange and the right thing to do would be to go out not to study, but culture is a funny thing, and with culture comes something of conformity pressure. More on that later, but yes, the second part of the paragraph above is true. I need to finish in 5 minutes cause I won’t be able to type tomorrow morning πŸ˜€ hahaha.

First, I’d like to say that you shouldn’t take my blog as a research, but as an insight and my opinion.

If I may offend anyone, well I’ll make sure I take this down.

The whole Wiki-leaks thing does make you thing what you can/can’t put on the internet.

So, down to business.

There are a few reasons that I gathered from my Korean friends. I’ve asked them what are the chances of war happening? Why not? Should I get a plane ticket outta here?

Let’s talk about the consequences first.

From what I gathered (don’t quote me or reference me. If you do, I only accept Harvard referencing), if the war happened. A lot of people are going to die. From both sides. Quite possibly…. including yours truly, me. A bomb may or may not be dropped on Seoul first, but the point is both sides will have significant casualties. That’s probably the most likely situation. In my opinion, I think South Korea is going to win nevertheless should the UN back them up.

So fast-forwarding a lot of military operations and James Bond missions, a lot martinis stirred and not shaken, Korea would possibly be reunited. But from what I heard things are like 1984 over there, and centrally planned gov’t is not sufficient enough to keep supplies intact with demand and the economy is suffering, and so do the people living in the country. So there are a lot of people impoverished, starving and homeless. Thus it would set the Korea’s economy back by a few decades to recover and to unify the peninsula.

I agree that this is only one of the possibilities, it could also that they will come to a peaceful agreement. The North will open up under the new leadership, the economy will be freer and it’s a happy ending.

Considering the first gloom possibility is heightened by recent tensions, most, if not all South Korean (from my sample of 10 people. lol.) don’t want a WAR. Some people also said that the ones who would probably benefit from this war are the arms dealers and those who are in the line of fire will pay the cost. So I think we can safely say that there is no interest on why the South would want a war, and could even go far to say, they will do a lot to prevent it.

LIFE as a university is pretty normal, even as we heard it on the first day. Beers were still being drunk, songs were still sung in Karaoke (NoRaeBang) and the thing we stress about most is exams. Although, I’m sure some people have fled the country with parents being all worried and all. I do feel good though that my University cared about me to send an email to see if I was alright, albeit a day late πŸ˜› Should I drop my university’s name here or not? Hmmm…. Haha.

Oh, one thing I have found is that, if you ever found yourself in trouble, committing acts of delinquency, just shout out random university names other than yours. Hahaha. “UNSW IS THE BEST!”, although careful not to do this while wearing your school’s jersey.

So in conclusion, life is normal, yes there are tensions but foreign media hyped it up also, and WAR is quite unlikely in my opinion.

Regards,

Ray of UWS πŸ˜€


Cat Cafe – Myong-Dong

Cat Cafe in Myong-dong



I actually went to the cat one first, before going to the dog one. πŸ˜›



IF YOU ARE A CAT LOVER: MUST MUST MUST GO πŸ˜€


Okay, the setting is pretty similar to the dog-cafe except with a lot more scratching posts, kitty litter boxes, yarnball and etc. Oh! fishbone decor as well. IT’s CAT HAVEN.



They are pet-able, although it’s advisable not to pick them up, and I don’t think you can feed them.

I am not 100% sure on that one though.



This little guy below is the star of this Cafe.

You’ll find that the smaller ones likes to play with you more.

It was playing with my Hoodie’s string. Haha.



Ummm, I must say I like the Dog Cafe better.

Maybe it’s because I’m more of a Dog-person. Haha.

And also because it was probably cat-nap time πŸ˜€


Nevertheless, it still has a charm. πŸ™‚


“Read Ray’s Blog. Or else. Purrrr~”

 


I love being in South Korea right now.

Well, not much happened so far. My friend called me up telling me that 200 missiles were fired up upon a island in the Yellow sea. At the time I was in a dog cafe (a cafe full of dogs, girls seem to love it even though it stinks like dog) so I asked him if I should be worried and get back to my home. His reply was him laughing and said dont worry about it. He then says to me “I should get back to the army soon, want to join me to fight the north?”. I replied that I “was going to stay behind and protect the cute girls”. Not to many people have taken it too seriously so far. Walking home a hour later I seemed to be the only one worried. Everyone was acting normal.


Somaek.

Last night I stumbled onto something I hadn’t come across in Korea before. Private Karoke rooms where you order food and alcohol over the phone thats brought to your room. Cheap good service as well. Cost my party ofΒ 4 Β 80 dollars for 4 hours of karoke, 2 main courses followed by 6 side dishes, and bottles and bottles of soju(vodka) and beer. This leads to my post. Going out in Korea for anyone young or old means drinking soju. Its very rare to see a table without the shotglasses and empty bottles or the cheering of “chan” or “geombae” or “one shot”.

(A common sight Β each one of these bottles is about 7 standard drinks)

But when you hang out with young people they like to drink somaek. Somaek is when you get a middie of beer (maekju) and pour in a shot of soju and mix it with a chopstick to make sure the soju doesnt stay at the top. Then you play drinking games where you have to have your somaek in a full or half shot. Drinking in korea starts off by a “one shot”, then repeated full or half shots of soju after. After the first or second bottle of soju has been consumed someone will decide that somaek is a good idea and a jug of beer is ordered.

Drinking in korea leads to two options. One you have to get home at midnight/2 am as you have class/work the next. Usually you will stay at the one bar and maybe go to a karoke afterwards before stumbling home. Many businessmen are passed out on the streets because of this. The second option is going to one bar for dinner and drinks. Followed by another bar for snacks and drinks. Followed by karoke or another bar for drinks and snacks. Then a club. Somaek is something I wont be drinking when I return home. That is if my liver survives this deadly cocktail.

Being too drunk in Korea is not a problem. You friends will politely forget about what happened. As it could be them next.

Soju! Chann!!! Im off to get a hangover.


Suncheon Bay and Korean Thanksgiving

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Suncheon is small and quiet town, located approx. 5 hours south by train from Seoul.

I came down here to spend the National holiday called Korean Thanksgiving (21st Sept-23rd Sept) with a genuine Korean family. My friend has been kind enough to invite him to spend this special time with his family and it was an opportunity that doesn’t come very often.

주석 (Chuseok) is the national Korean Thanksgiving holiday celebrating the arrival of autumn. It is a time where Family takes a bigger role in this movie we call ‘Our Lives’ (at least in Korea anyways :P). Traditionally, families will gather to perform Ancestral Rites (to respect our predecessors), spend time with each other, play games, dance, sing and eat lots and lots and lots and lots and lots and lots. (breathe*) And lots and lots of food.

So I took the road less travelled by, and that made all the difference.

For More info: tortori.blogspot.com

Regards,

Ray K


Parking Space for Women – Korea Seoul

One of the things I found quite interesting is this Parking Spot reserved only for women. πŸ˜€
One of my friends said that it was to encourage and promote gender equality on women, since Korea is still a glass-ceiling society I think. Another said that it was courtesy.

What do you guys think? Is it necessary? It’s certainly a quite interesting idea to say the least.