Monday, 15 November 2010

Doing stuff at the weekend!

Well, Tom and I actually had a fairly productive weekend for once! It was nice to do things, rather than just sit around watching X Factor - although we managed to fit that in too, of course.

Last week was fairly typical: I think the only things worthy of mention are PAYDAY! and the fact that I got two new students in my Wednesday/Friday adult class. Oh, and we ordered an oven online, although it's going to delivered to a friend's place, hopefully this week.

Then the weekend came along! On Thursday, during the online ordering of the oven, I mentioned that I also wanted a small dining table. All I wanted was something cheap and wooden. Suddenly, six or seven people were involved in the purchase of a second-hand table, with phone calls and text messages being sent all over South Korea. Eventually we agreed that our boss would give us a table that she has in storage and would take us to a second-hand store on Saturday morning.

On Friday the table arrived, with four 'chairs' (stools). We refused the stools and sadly hid the table away - it has metal legs and I'm not happy about it.

On Saturday, we got up early and were taken by our boss's husband to a furniture store. The furniture didn't look second-hand... but it did have the higgledy-piggledy, cramped atmosphere which, in our experience, 'proper' furniture shops lack. However, after being told that their cheapest chairs were 45,000W each, we called our boss again and reminded her that we wanted second-hand. She insisted that this shop was as cheap as any second-hand place, but to be honest, even if that turned out later to be true, I didn't want to kit out a rented apartment (which is only ours until next October) with brand-new furniture.

Funnily enough, a couple of minutes' drive away we found a real second-hand shop with a small round table and two chairs which we got for 60,000W. We paid, went home, and the set was delivered to us for free within twenty minutes of paying for it. We are pretty pleased with it.

The other major Saturday event, except for discovering a local butcher's (an extremely fun experience), was going out for dinner! On our own! With nothing but two phrasebooks and a dictionary to help us! It was a local place that we've walked past countless times, on the way to both the yarn shop (more on which later) and the nearest taxi rank, which looks fairly traditional - at least, it requires the removal of shoes and sitting on the (heated) floor. We ate gamjatang, which is a "spicy soup with pork vertebrae and potatoes," and tastes much nicer than it sounds. Overall we ate this huge main dish (it was the smallest size, shockingly), rice, all the assorted side dishes, and had a beer each for just 23,000W. Eating out is definitely cheap, but we remain skeptical of the people who claim that it's cheaper to go to restaurants than to cook in Korea.

In knitting news, there are some Top Secret Christmas Projects going on, which I am very excited about. Also, after using Judy's Magic Cast On (video) for my first pair of toe-up socks, I have gone sock crazy and have spent a significant amount of the last twenty-four hours gazing longingly at sock patterns. That cast-on is just so easy and beautiful. Several times I have thrust the laptop at Tom gabbling "oh my god these are so beautiful look LOOK." I even laughed at a knitting joke. (Why is this knitting pattern called Crusoe? Because it's stranded. Hahaha!) I think I'm going to have to make these, which necessitates another trip to the yarn shop, of course.

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