Sunday, August 28, 2016

KGSP - The Final September Approaches

So back home in Canada, September is always kind of a bittersweet month for me. For starters, my birthday is at the beginning of the month and my birthday is always great. It's not cool to increment your age, but it's always a nice excuse to meet up with friends and have fun.

But September is also normally the start of the school year. This is bad cause school sucks, but it's also good too because it's a nice break from the lull you kind of settle in during the summer break. Plus you get to meet all your friends again so it's nice.

But our department is still under renovation so it doesn't have that new feel yet.

However in Korea it's a bit different. Yea sure it's still my birthday and birthdays are great, but despite having a decent friend group in Daejeon now, a lot of my friends still live in Seoul so I gotta go up there. It's fun and all, but it's a lot of time and money.

Also since the semester system in Korea is different, September is the second semester of the school year so it's not a "new" feeling. Especially since I've been at school the entire (short) summer in the lab anyways. Only good thing about being in the lab is free AC.

Seriously though , paying for electricity bills in the summer sucks.

If all things goes according to plan this will be my last "September first day of school" though. I have two semesters left of my masters and don't plan on doing my PhD. I think I'm ready to move on from post-secondary education.

Speaking of moving on, a few of my friends are also leaving Korea too. Already one Japanese friend left last week and one more Japanese friend is leaving next week, with a Ukrainian friend leaving shortly after that too. Worst part about making friends with non-locals is eventually someone leaves.

However I cannot wait for the summer to leave because it's too hot. I even cleaned my winter coat.

The semester should go by quick though, when I won't have as much classwork as last semester, but there should still be enough to do that the workload will cause my perception of time to b skewed.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

KGSP - The Games Conclude

Well, the Olympics technically haven't ended yet, but for me they pretty much have. For me, the Summer Olympics is pretty much the Opening Ceremony, swimming, athletics, Closing Ceremony. The events I wanted to watch are over and the Closing Ceremony is tomorrow morning.

But to be honest, it was a fun Olympics. I always find it fun to follow along and see what happens, and this Olympics delivered in a lot of ways. Canada normally doesn't do that great in the Summer Olympics, but we did ok this time too.

I was hoping we would've beaten Russia in volleyball though.

Sprinting events are by far my most favourite events in the Summer Olympics, and seeing Usain Bolt win three golds again in his events was amazing. Even better was seeing Andre De Grasse get medals alongside Usain Bolt for Canada.

That was really awesome. Didn't expect that to happen, but it was super awesome to see. The entire storyline here for the sprinting events was really awesome and definitely the best part of these Olympics for me.

And of course all of the meme potential too. (Getty)

Aside from the Olympics the week was pretty standard. However, I did get to do one interesting thing. People that have known me for a while know that I am a big fan of laser tag. Going to Laser Quest as a kid for birthdays were definitely highlights of my childhood.

And lo and behold, a new laser tag place opened up in Daejeon. It's only like two stops away by subway or like a 20 - 30 minute bike ride so it's not even that far. So on Saturday me and some of my friends went to go check the place out.

Definitely looks very different compared to Laser Quest.

It was a very interesting experience. I've only ever done laser tag at Laser Quest, and this was a very different laser tag place. It was much more modern and the game modes were very different. For example it wasn't a free for all, it was a more controlled experience with your group.

They had three rounds, each with a different game mode like team deathmatch, capture the flag, and sniper. They had different weapon types, ammo, and even different roles you could assume. It was like Laser Quest but with less people, a smaller space, but with many more mechanics.

And of course, it's Korea so you have to take a picture at the end.

It was actually really fun. But it was surprisingly tiring. After the first round everyone was already sweating and feeling kinda gross. My legs today are sore from all the running around and ducking and stuff. Overall pretty good experience, would go again.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

KGSP - The Games Continue

For the most part this week has been pretty standard. Nothing too much to report, just more of the same. But with the Olympics on I have a bit more of a distraction. I've been trying to follow along as much as I can, but with the time difference it's a bit annoying.

When I wake up I have a few hours of live content I can watch, and then it's back on at night. But due to the fact that prime time is in the morning for us, it's actually not too bad since I can catch most of the big events.

Olympic time means specially branded Cokes too.

Canada really needs to do better in the Summer Olympics. We're no longer doing bad by any means (right now anyways), but it's still nothing compared to our dominance in the Winter Olympics. Regardless, it's still fun to follow along.

Outside of the Olympics it's just been more work in the lab. The days are counting by and soon the semester will be upon us. I have much to do before then, so I've been working like everyday. This is a long weekend but I've been spending it working.

And finding out that there's a hot pot place nearby for six bucks a person.

Lab work is definitely the big thing on my mind right now, but I also have a side project I wanna get done before the semester starts. Plus I have an extended class project from last semester I need to polish up too. All in all this isn't much of a summer break, but that's life I guess.

Still kinda vexes me a bit when I see people going home for the summer or travelling around Asia or just chilling and playing video games in this time. I wish I could do that too. Trying not to let it get to me that much though, the payoff for all this work could be pretty great.

As great as getting McDonalds sundaes delivered. But not as great as that camera focus fail though.

But yea, the work continues!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

KGSP - The Games Begin

For the most part this week has been pretty standard. There are a few events that are non-standard though. For example, the Summer Olympics started yesterday. Now I normally don't care about sports that much, but every two years, I care about the Olympics.

The Summer Olympics are exciting, but my heart is still with the Winter Olympics because Canada wins. But alas, this year is the Summer Olympics. Canada doesn't normally do well in the Summer Olympics, but I'm still pretty hyped for some of the events.

I'll be more than thrilled if we win more than one gold though.

I woke up early for the Opening Ceremony and that was kind of neat. They said they spent less money on it this year than previous years, and you could tell, but they put in a lot of cool effects that I personally think was pretty interesting.

Regardless, Opening Ceremonies are always kinda special. It kind of hit me too, as I was watching the ceremony on Korean TV, that I watched the last Summer Olympics in Hong Kong. Meaning that for two Olympics in a row I haven't watched from home.

Still waiting for the day I can watch in person though.

Makes you really think about how many summers I've been away in the last couple years. Outside of the Olympics it's been pretty standard stuff in the lab. Highlight of the week in terms of the lab was on Friday when one of our alumnis and one of our new students came to visit.

Seeing our alumni was nice. She finished the semester before I started but I visited enough while I was still doing my language studies that I got to meet her a few times. The new guy seemed ok too. Didn't really talk to him that much, but he starts in September.

Got to eat some non-Korean food afterwards too, always a plus.

But yea, life as usual really.