A lot of really random stuff has gone on over the past few months. I got drunk on red wine and sang in front of a thousand people in China and received a standing ovation for my performance. I went to Germany and ate lots of animals I don't really like all that much but ate because they're unavailable in Korea (venison, rabbit, lamb, etc.) I went to Hong Kong and did stuff that people do in Hong Kong.
All of these things are pretty decent excuses as to why I didn't write anything here in like a million hours. Well, those and the fact that I have an iphone, so all the stuff that five years ago would have been a blog post are now just uploaded from my iphone to Facebook. (ie. "Look at this poorly written English sign. Har har har!")
Perhaps the biggest reason I haven't written, at least during the past month or so is the fact that I now own property. My wife and I rented a small apartment and had a two year contract. That contract was up for renewal this spring. For reasons unknown to us, the price to rent an apartment suddenly became astronomically high in the area we were living in.
I suppose I should explain how housing works in Korea. If you need a place to live, there are three things you can do. First you can pay monthly rent. This works almost exactly the same as renting does in America. Second you can buy. Again nothing different here. You go to the bank get a ton of money give said money to current owner and sign a bunch of papers and its yours. Korea also has something between the two. They call it 전세 (jeonsae). Basically you give the landlord a huge chunk of money (at our last apartment it was like $100,000) and then you live in that apartment rent free for a set period, usually two years. At the end of that two year period you get your giant deposit back and you leave. How the landlord makes any real money under this system I'm not really sure, but it's a good way to make money for the tennant if you can afford that initial deposit.
So we did that for two years during which the price of jeonsae apartments rose...a lot. And a lot of them turned into standard rental properties. Apparently landlords figured that the jeonsae system wasn't really good for them unless they stole that money for the tennants (which was a real possibility and the reason I was not about living in a jeonsae apartment at all), so they all switched to regular rental properties...or jacked up their prices.
The prices to purchase an apartment did not follow suit. So we ended up with a situation where we would have to borrow money to do jeonsae, or borrow a little more money and own a house. Since neither my wife nor I are particularly stupid we decided to buy.
So we now live in a pretty decent sized apartment on the opposite side of the river from where we previously lived. Our house is roughly two times the size of our last apartment so there's a lot of space and everything looks really clean since we don't have to have stacks of stuff. We moved in at the end of April and are just now getting everything organized again. There are still some minor stuff that needs to be purchased like a dining table and curtains in the living room, but all the really major stuff has been attended to.
So there you go...a bunch of half assed excuses as to why I haven't written anything here in a very, very long time. While we're at it, I should probably just give my excuse for why I won't be writing here for the next 3-5 weeks. In 6 days I'm going to America for a business trip followed by a vacation to my hometown. So when all of that is done, I'll come back and write about the awesome stuff I bought at Target or how the Tri-City Valley Cats did while I was in town. And maybe one of these days I'll actually post some pictures of the new pad, though maybe not because I'm incredibly lazy.