Thursday, March 31, 2011

Korea - Part V Final (Suwon II)

(All photos from my trip can be found on the photo album on my Facebook Fan Page!)

Back at Samsung, this time they were missing some of the National Team players as they were back at the National Training Center (as we saw on Tuesday when we visited - see Part IV). However, training was still good as we had some opportunities to play with the players. How it usually works is that if you can beat them, then you can play again, or maybe even play some higher level players. Or, the players may 'challenge' you again (it's all up to the coach), and you have to do your best to beat them. Unfortunately, winning is not as easy as it sounds, and you have to work pretty hard and play well to win. We had some okay Mixed games, but Men's Doubles was pretty rough, as everyone was flying around, smashing and driving everything, and if you were not ready, you would lose the rally. We were pretty tired from training because though the Samsung team had Thursday afternoon off, we trained anyway. We had the option to take Friday afternoon off instead, but since Saturday was also just a half day, we decided to train anyway and tough it out. Though it wasn't easy, at least one of us didn't leave empty handed...

Samsung Company Team Banner
(L to R) Kwon Seung Taek, Gil Young Ah, Lee Hyo Jyung
(L to R) Seo Yoon Hee, Hwang Hye Youn, and Kang Hae Won
(L to R) Kim Min Seo, Park So Ri, Jang Su Young

(L to R) Im Ho Hyun and Ko Hyun Jung
(L to R) Jung Jae Sung, Park Tae Sang, and Ha Tae Kwon
(L to R) Cho Gun Woo, Lee Yong Dae, and Kang Woo Kyum
(L to R) Choi Hyun Ho, Kim Dong Min, and Hwang Jung Soo
(L to R) Park Yong Jae, Kim Moon Soo, and An Se Sung
Yes, so we decided to return to train on our own, as Kim had an errand to run in another city, so he would be away from the day. We went back to Samsung and to my surprise, because I'm not sure if Grace or Christin noticed, I saw Jung Jae Sung! So... if Jung Jae Sung is there... that should mean... Lee Yong Dae would be too (and Hwang Hye Youn hahaha ;). At first, we were just stretching and all, and then to our surprises, in walks... Cho Gun Woo... then followed by Lee Yong Dae =) See, I guess training more pays off! After our training we had the fortune of seeing some of the other legends at Samsung, notably Park Joo Bong and Kim Moon Soo, 1992 MD Olympic Champions. Park Joo Bong is currently coaching the Japanese National Team, while Kim Moon Soo is coaching the Korean National Team! But none of this is that important to Christin Tsai, who was wanting a picture with Lee Yong Dae. Fortunately for her, I had the courage to ask for her, so I guess the rest is history. Unfortunately, we had to deal with her ravings for the rest of the evening ;)

Christin Tsai with Lee Yong Dae!
As some of you might know, I've been incredibly sick for a fair amount of time in Korea. First I've had food poisoning, which cleared itself up, then some intolerance to the food, which felt like Traveler's Diarrhea (TD). Fortunately, I was able to treat the TD with Probiotics (in capsule form), but until I could return to my medicine bag in Seoul (I was in Iksan at the time), I had to rememdy it with digestive cookies, probiotic yogurt drinks, and even McDonald's (comfort food hypothesis haha). Unfortunately, it just didn't work the same as the capsules, but now that I'm on them, it's been pretty good. If you are traveling, I would recommend a probiotic supplementation if you want to be safe. I've used Florastor and at the moment, I'm using Jamieson's Advanced 4-Strain Probiotic which I found at a Superstore for about $20 CAD. There are other remedies, including Imodium (Loperamide) and Dukoral. Imodium is quite strong, as it REALLY stops you from going. You might think it's a good thing, but I've been advised that sometimes, bad things need to get out, so if you're keeping it trapped in your system, them worse things can happen. I've never tried Dukoral either, but it's a pretty heavy treatment as well, as it's more or less a drinkable vaccine. It's also fairly expensive and as Korea isn't really THAT bad, I've opted for the probiotics instead. Also, Dukoral is kind of a one shot thing that keeps you TD (and Cholera) free for about 3 months, but later on, you'll need another dose. Anyway, always check with your family physician for proper medical advice. Also, I have no idea how these treatments work for children, so I would definitely get more information for them.

Large variety of cough drops, Probiotic pills, Tylenol Flu, etc.
Wow, I got way off topic but I think I will go write an article later on 'Medication to Travel With' and interview some health professionals for more information. I think there will be people who might like that, especially if they get sick as much as I do o__O Anyway, I've been through various Korean medication for my NEW problem. It started as a pretty severe sore throat, but from the trend of other people I see at training, it will probably become a cough. And yes, I was quite correct. I had caught the local sickness spreading around. Great... the sore throat was quite painful and even the Halls, limited Strepsils, and salt-water rinses were limited. However, I did find some relief in eating, as I guess the salivary glands kicked in and it lubricated the throat a little bit. Now that it seemed to have migrated down my throat, it's become one of those annoying dry coughs. I've asked for some OTC (over-the-counter) medication but they gave me some pills that I still don't really know what they're for (as the box and everything is in Korean), but after searching on the internet (yes, I can slowly type in Korean characters), I found my medicine. With the help of Google Chrome, it translated the page enough for me to make sense of the pills, but it seemed to be just some mixture of herbal medicines. Frankly, it's not working so great as I'm skeptical about herbal meds so I've lost any chance of a placebo effect. Anyway, I've given too much information again, as I wanted to introduce Korean 'Yu-ja-cha' or Citron Tea. From searching on the web, I've actually learned that 'citron' is a fruit itself (hey, I thought it was just a reference to a mixed-citrus fruit flavour). Basically, it's a large jar of cut up citron, including the peels which are edible, mixed with honey and some other ingredients. Sometimes there is a mix of aloe, lemon, ginger, red dates/ju jubes, and even ginseng. Unfortunately, I just opted for the default, so I just had generic yujacha. Oddly enough, it's rather pricey here, with a large jar (1kg) costing about $5.50 CAD. In Canada, it's about that price, but then again, it depends if it's Korean, Chinese, and I believe it may be popular in Japan as well, though I have not seen a Japanese brand. It's a simple drink mix, where you take a few spoons and mix if with hot water. At the moment, it's my staple drink and I've been going at it for a few days now. I've also added Ginger Tea to my arsenal and that is helping things along as well.

Korean YooJaCha - mix with hot water!
Ginger Tea
For our last Monday and Tuesday in Korea, we decided to go with the Samsung company team to train in Po-Cheon, a small city North of Seoul. They will be having a local tournament there in April, so they went to train there for a days. The gym was quite cold, as I was told that Po-Cheon was at a higher altitude, hence the cold weather as there was a bit of snow or frozen rain. The gym itself is pretty big, as it has 8 courts and a large viewing around on the 2nd floor looking down on the courts. We were fortunate to be able to tag along with Samsung, as we were treated for meals, as we just joined the team for most of their activities! We ended up staying at the same motel, called 'Palace Hotel' as it looks like a giant castle (see picture) and it was a decent place. It was like the other motels we stayed at, with a big TV, free internet, and other ammenities. We skipped the Tuesday afternoon session though, as we had to head back to Seoul to get ready for our return home.

Po-Cheon Gym
Motel in Po Cheon
The Samsung bus
On Wednesday, we helped Kim out with an exhibition at Seoul Foreign School for their Junior High School team. We played around with the kids and then did a little fundamental skills exhibition (e.g. lunges, footwork, etc.) and then a little exhibition game between me and Grace vs. Kim and Christin. It was interesting to see because the level of elementary/junior high school kids in Korea is quite high, but the level of badminton here was closer to the North American standard, that is, unfortunately, a lot weaker. As it was a school for foreigners (everyone spoke English), it felt a little like coaching at home =) Nonetheless, it was nice to see the interest in badminton at the Seoul Foreign School.

Kim posing in a picture with the Seoul Foreign School players
That pretty much wraps up the trip! We went to the airport via airport bus from Seoul and got to the airport on time, but only to find that our flight was delayed and we would have to change our connecting flight to a later time. Unfortunately, that meant changing our flight from 2:40pm to 8:15pm, almost 6 hours difference. But we would only have about an hour to transfer flights in the US, including getting boarding passes, going through security, and of course going through customs... though maybe not in that order. I've taken a couple of HD videos where I would walk around somewhere and just film whatever I saw. I gave very brief commentaries on the latter videos, but I guess we'll see how that goes. Anyway, thanks for checking out my blog these past weeks and hope it was entertaining enough! Next to come will be some past footage, the odd article, and hopefully NEW tournament footage as I will be starting up the tournaments again very soon!

Until next time =) Meanwhile, enjoy the rest of the pictures!

Triangle Kimbab from a convenience store. Only 700 Won!
Real kimbab at a noodle/kimbab shop... still really cheap! 2500-3000 Won!
Blue was playing hard to get. Either way, all the Samsung players got a souvenir =)
Japchae with rice - More or less Korean style comfort food!
Ultimate comfort food: Quarter Pounder w/ Cheese combo at McDonalds =)
Okay, maybe this is too much for comfort food. Check out the Samsung FASHION though!
Final group shot with Ha Tae Kwon!
And one with Lee Hyo Jung! =)
Guess who? =P
Here she is again! =)
Okay, maybe I'm a little too obsessed with Kim Yuna... oh well ~__^

As a bonus, I have included some video footage in HD (720p) of me walking around different places in Korea, filming what I saw! For a better taste of Korea, check out the videos!

YouTube Links:
Walking around Suwon Pt I

Walking around Suwon Pt II

Walking around Seoul

Walking around Incheon/Seoul Airport

Of course, this trip would not have been possible if not for Kim Dong Moon, so a big thank you to him! He pretty much had to travel with us and coach us most of the time. He also set up some games for us with the other Korean players, so without him, this would have been more or less an impossible trip. Also, I'd like to thank Lee Dong Soo and the KNSU team, Ra Kyung Min and the Dae Kyo team (Park Sun Young, Lee Hyun Jin, and Lee Yun Hwa), Choi Jung and the entire Won Kwang University team (including Lee Haeng Ham), and of course, Kwon Seung Taek and the Samsung team, including coaches Ha Tae Kwon, Gil Young Ah, Lee Hyo Jung, and all their players that we were able to play with! Another thank you to Kim and Ra, for letting me stay with them and their family including their adorable kids in Seoul! Lastly, I would like to make a personal thank you to the Canadians who came on the trip: Jon Vandervet, Alan Chow, and Christin Tsai. As they are not regularly with our training group, it was nice of them to take the adventure to Korea with us and keep us company. I hope you enjoyed the trip as much as we did =)

And of course, thank you all for taking the time to visit my blog!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Korea - Part IV (Seoul II)

(Photos here can also be found on my Facebook Fan Page!)

Now back in Seoul! We took the fast train back from Iksan so it only took about 2.5 hours. The train also offered wireless internet, but I ended up sleeping most of the way to catch up on my lack of sleep from the night before. We were due back to train at KNSU (Korea National Sport University - see Part I) and Grace could reunite with the Dae Kyo team. Also, Christin Tsai would be arriving to train with us for the remainder of the trip and she would be staying with Grace at Dae Kyo's dorm as well.

Seoul Train Station
Training started off pretty much where we left off, though the KNSU team didn't train in the mornings because they had classes. However, I was told they may have early morning training, which meant training at 6:30am before their classes. However, they would be in the gym during the afternoon session from about 3:00-5:30pm. The first couple of training sessions, we joined in with their warm up, including a team run where they ran around the gym in a line at the same pace, and then another day where we played soccer. The KNSU team is quite large, but they are surprisingly structured, as their warm up stretching, running, and even drills were done together, meaning everyone was doing things at the same pace more or less. That meant working together most of the time to keep drills running smoothly.

Soccer Warm Up

KNSU Team group stretching
In Korea, there is a surprising amount of 'yelling' that is done. I know this is more or less a foreign thing in Canada, though we are slowly picking things up in our tournaments, but Koreans do it in practice as well. It's even crazier at lower levels, like in High School teams, where between every rally, they would yell up to three times EVERY RALLY. If they win the rally or if they lost the rally, they would yell to pump themselves up. It seems a little weird at first, but they seem to do it to whoever they were up against. Although it seems quite offensive, nobody ever takes things too personally, and in the end, it seems to bring up a good training environment where everybody is working hard. It always seems more like a challenge, every time someone yells, and the idea is that you have to pretty much yell back to show that you're up for the challenge, rather than over-yell because it's not a yelling contest. Typically, they yell at one standard tone depending on the person. They will not yell weaker, they will not yell stronger. After a while, you just learn to accept it, and it's no big deal. However, I feel in Canada that we don't quite grasp that concept, so it can get quite personal. Since most coaches don't really understand this either, as it is taken from International badminton, there will definitely be mixed opinions on it. Also, with different cultural views, some may not deem it very acceptable, whereas in Korea, it seems perfectly normal and it may even be worse if you don't yell. Yelling here signifies that you are trying to pump yourself up to play your best. Typically, people who aren't trying have no need to yell... whether they are winning or losing, so it seems (IMHO). This is one topic that you'll never find in the Canadian coaching programs. In fact, watching other sports in Korea, they all do the same thing.

Lee Dong Soo (coach of KNSU) addressing the KNSU team
Crossing the river in Seoul
On the weekend, the Canadians went to a shopping mall called Techno Mart, because the Koreans were hung over from the night before (heard it was REALLY crazy). We took a short taxi ride over and began scouring the first two floors. It was mostly clothing and stuff, including hats, bags, stationary, etc, but it also had the food court, which we were looking for. I tried Lotteria, a Korean hamburger chain and to be honest, I wasn't too impressed with their burger. The others went for Korean and their food definitely didn't disappoint. After food, we went round some more and bought a couple of stationary items, then we decided to head on up. The 2nd floor seemed to be all electronics, including cameras, camcorders, mp3 players, etc. We went up another floor and it was ANOTHER floor of electronics, identical to the 2nd floor. Apparently the 2nd and 3rd floor were for domestic electronics, so when we got to the 4th and 5th floor, we apparently hit the 'Worldwide Electronics', which wasn't too far off from the domestic. The next floor, 6th now, was for cellphones. Unfortunately, I don't think it's and cheaper to try to buy an unlocked phone here (e.g. Galaxy S =P) and if anything it may be MORE expensive to buy without a contract. Regardless, we went up to the 7th and 8th floor and they had computer stuff and video game stuff... incredible, MORE electronics. I guess the mall doesn't lie about it's name. Finally, on the 9th floor, we hit a 2nd food court, though it's more assorted with different coffee shops and different types of food. The final floor, which we didn't visit though, was actually a movie theatre! What an incredible mall, but we didn't actually buy anything, except for me. I bought another pair of Kim Yuna (2010 Olympic Women's Figure Skating Solo Champion) earphones... technically I'm only missing the red pair now! Regardless, we went down to the B2 floor where they had a Lotte Mart, pretty much a chain grocery store in Korea. It's priced very well so we got some drinks and snacks before we headed back to the dorm.

Techno Mart
Techno Mart - 10 Floors!

Techno Mart floors from the elevator
We had the fortune of visiting the National Training Center, even though it was for the morning session. Apparently, the National Team also has early morning training, from 6:30am to 8:00am, then breakfast, then morning training at about 10:00am, though they start their warm up at about 9:30am. Training last until about 11:30am, then they do a cooldown stretch and head to lunch. Unfortunately, the National Team members in Europe were just returning, so we missed them by a day. Anyway, we got a chance to eat at the training center too, for 11 000 Won (~$10 CAD) and it was spectacular! It was a lunch buffet more or less and they had all types of food, including a blend of Korean and Western choices! To top it off, they had persimmon and korean pear as part of the salad bar! It was really nice to see the training center again, even though it was for a brief period of time!

Supposedly, you can run up the mountain on the left in 22 mins from the shot of this photo!
Another shot of the track to the mountain
Counting down to the 2012 Olympics! Wish me luck =P

Banner at Korea National Training Center - we should have one like this in Canada...
Video editing station
Shot of the courts with me, Grace, and Christin

National Center dining hall
National Training Center food! I ate SO much o__O

That's pretty much it for this section! Stay tuned for the final section of my blog, Suwon and Samsung Company Team Part II! More miscellaneous pictures below!

Pork Galbi (Pork rib)
Group photo including Kim and Ra's kids! They are SOOO cute! =)
Korean burger joint at Techno Mart (Lotteria), they had 3 of these in the entire mall!
Extremely obvious urinal sign at Techno Mart LOL
Thanks for visiting my blog!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Shuttler: Volume 1, Issue 4 (eMagazine)

Here is a link to Badminton Ontario's magazine, The Shuttler, featuring players from the 2011 Canadian National Championships, the 2011 Canada Winter Games, and more!

For the record, my victory pose picture was after I won the MD semi-final, racquet flying out of my hand and all =)

Check it out!
The Shuttle: Volume 1, Issue 4

(Link credit: Jon Vandervet)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Korea - Part III (Iksan)

(Photos will be uploaded to my Facebook Fan Page!)

The third part of our Korea journey was to Won Kwang University in Iksan, Kim's former University. We arrived by train from Suwon, which was about a 2.5 hour ride. The train was relatively straight forward and we had little difficulties getting there. At Iksan station, we were reunited with Lee Haeng Ham! Haeng Ham came to Calgary to train with Kim for about 10 months from March 2009 to January 2010. I played a couple of tournaments with him, including winning the 2009 BC Elite Series and we competed in the 2010 Korean and Malaysian Super Series' before he returned to Korea. Unfortunately, both matches we played we lost 23-21 in the third set! Maybe I can upload those matches later if I still have them lying around.

A shot of the Won Kwang University Student Union Building

Another shot of the University. The grass had recently been burnt, probably for new grass?

Lee Haeng Ham doing his 'school boy' pose.

The guys crashed in a large room together, while Grace got her own personal room because it's supposed to be a male dorm, so for some reason, she was the lucky one. Our large room was just a room and we slept on the floor. It was quite uncomfortable, but we just sucked it up because we were at least able to get internet access. Funny what you can do if you have internet =P Anyway, the schedule ran roughly like this for the week: breakfast at 7:45am, training 9-11:30am, lunch at 12:00pm, and afternoon training from 2:40-5:30pm. However a couple of days we did evening training instead, so that meant dinner at 5:00pm, and training 6:30-8:30pm. It really depended on who had classes and when, so training seemed to be all over the place. Nonetheless, everyone was definitely putting in a lot of training time, regardless of class or not.

A typical dorm at the University. Shared with a roommate, with showers/washrooms shared by the whole floor.
Watching the 2011 All Englands on TV! Ha Tae Kwon was the commentator for Korea =)

However, since Jon and Alan were only staying part of the week, we took a couple afternoons off to explore a bit of Iksan and finally get a chance to try a Korean spa! This Korean 'Spa' was basically a public bath-house, so it's usually separated into a men's and women's section. It really depends on the spa, but generally there are a lot of showers, and a couple of hot baths... like a hot tub minus the bubbles, a cold pool, a steam room, a sauna, and some stuff that seemed to be a combination of everything. Kim eventually took us to a spa that is at the outskirts of Iksan, but close to another city (Jeon Ju) so that attracts business from both cities. The restaurant is operated by his friend and his wife and it's really really good! Recently, they added 'tonkatsu' (fried pork) to their menu (check out the pictures from Suwon!). The spa was also very good, as there were 3 hot baths at various temperatures, including one that used green tea. There was a sauna with a view of the outside, and there was even this bed of stones, which is for foot reflexology I think. I don't believe in the foot reflexology, but I did it anyway to stretch out those arches on my feet =P Anyway, we all enjoyed the 5000 Won (~$4.50 CAD) and had an awesome lunch after! Kim also said that Iksan had really good side dishes and from some of the photos, you can see that he wasn't joking!

The popular spa and restaurant that we visited 3 times!
Side dishes part one: Kimchi, spinich, bean sprouts, yam, egg, seaweed, etc.
The aftermath. Note new side dishes including fruit salad, Japanese pumpkin, and more!
It looks like Jon defending Alan from Grace, but actually, it had something to do with a bee and a screaming Grace =)

Jon and Alan had to leave on Wednesday, but Kim found them some strawberries from a street vendor before they left. We also got to eat some and these strawberries are like none other! The strawberries here seem to be longer and are very very sweet. Not tart or tasteless like some of the steroid North American ones, but they are really something else! The strawberries I had in Seoul were alright, a little reminiscent of the North American ones, but the ones from Iksan were totally different! Unfortunately, I got sick again, so I don't know if it was from these strawberries or from too many McDonald's Chicken McNuggets =P The fruit here is generally fairly priced, though quality is usually a big factor in price. Singko pears, those big giant brownish asian pears are a perfect example. There are cheaper pears for a bout 1500 Won each (~$1.35 CAD) but can go up to maybe 5000 Won ($~4.50 CAD) per pear. I also saw a cantelope today, going for 26 000 Won (~$23.40 CAD). That sure was surprising, given that the prices in Korea are considered pretty cheap for most things.

Korean strawberries
Korean strawberries from a street vendor in Iksan!
Here's a comparison of its size with my hand! They were incredibly sweet and not tart whatsoever.

Training at Won Kwang University is COLD. Especially in the morning, when we get there at about 9am. We do a group stretch, then some running to warm up. By the time we actually pick up a racquet and shuttle to hit, it's probably almost 10am. Training here also seems quite different. They seem to really work on one or two techniques and keep doing it until they get it before they move on. Training is also a lot more individualized, as not everybody does the same program. Sometimes a couple of people are doing multi-shuttle for like an hour, while one person is hitting against the wall, and the doubles players are doing a 3 vs 2 defense. Though it was a lot more structured at KNSU, KNSU was even worse, as they didn't even play games for most of the week I was there. The reason was that it wasn't close to tournament time yet, so that's why they didn't play any games. We can definitely see a difference between training systems, as I feel there is more game playing emphasis in our system. But it's tough, because they are training everyday, while some people might train once a week, so if they don't get to play games, then they might not want to train. Kind of a tough situation, as the government funds one system, and customers fund the other =\

Here is the training facility that the Won Kwang team trains at. 

The gym is shared with other sports including handball. The ceiling is really high and the lights are a little too bright =\
We usually trained on 3 courts, but we could use the other side if we had more people and no handball training.

It was a pretty standard week, though I decided to keep going to McDonald's for comfort food. I don't even think it really is comfort food because I never order a meal, but in 3 days, I ended up ordering 4 meals from McDonalds (breakfast included). Breakfast is pretty cheap, as a meal is only 3000 Won (~$2.70 CAD). Apparently, I found out they also have a lunch menu, where it has a limited menu, but the prices are cheaper! A Big Mac meal was only 3700 Won! That's probably less than $3.50 CAD for the meal and I can't remember when McDonalds was that cheap in North America. Maybe when Cheeseburgers were 69 cents on Sundays =) Anyway, I guess every country has their cultural specialty burger, and there were actually 3 here, though I would say only one is a cultural specialty. I had a Bacon Tomato Deluxe, which was a Big Mac with bacon and tomato, with a red tangy sauce instead of the Big Mac sauce. It was decent, but I had to grab a cheeseburger to fully qualify the meal as comfort food. I must be slowly adding to my list of junk food vices (rice crispy squares, green tea ice cream, and McDonald's Cheeseburgers). The other sandwich I tried was the 'Shanghai Spice' Chicken sandwich, which is pretty much a rip-off of the Wendy's spicy chicken sandwich back home, with too much mayo. However, it was good and I'd eat it again, especially for a 3700 Won lunch meal! The last and the least, unfortunately, was the Bulgogi burger. Being frugal, I went for the Double, because it was only 3500 Won for the meal, so I got two 'patties' instead of one. I put patties in quotations because I really didn't know what I was eating. It looked like beef, but I don't think it was. It wasn't like the Big Mac or Cheeseburger patty, so I'm assuming it's some kind of pork patty. Think of it like the Sausage McMuffin sausage patty, except it just falls apart in your mouth. The sauce was excellent though, truly reminiscent of Korean bulgogi. I just couldn't stand the patties. Oh well. Anyway, I can't believe I wrote a whole tribute to McDonald's, but I hope someone from McDonald's reads this and offers me a sponsorship. Free Cheeseburgers anywhere in the world... then I'd be set. Yup, printing those Golden Arches on the front of my shirts. Hey, a guy can dream =P

Bacon Tomato Deluxe Set.
They say 'Set' in Korea, because they didn't understand 'meal' or 'combo', let alone 'extra value meal' =P
Looks like a Big Mac...
... but it's got BACON AND TOMATO! *sarcasm*
The Double Bulgogi Meal... 1000+ Calories o___O

Well, I will end the Iksan blog with some miscellaneous highlights and try to put in a few photos as well. We went to the spa another time and had 'galbi tang' (Beef Rib Soup). On Saturday, the head coach invited us out for lunch and him, another coach, and Kim had more or less a drinking contest. Unfortunately, Kim passed out first, but from the amount of alcohol they were consuming, I think I would have died 3 times o__O After, we had an afternoon practice with the women's team from Goon Sang University so we played a mixed doubles round robin, followed by pizza! Then more mixed doubles =P We went out later on Saturday night with Haeng Ham and his girlfriend and had Korean style shabu shabu, followed with a bucket of ice cream at Baskin Robins. Sunday was pretty dull aside from eating two meals at McDonalds in 2 hours, but at night I got to watch the All England MD final live on TV. Monday was pretty normal, but we had a late night snack party between the guys. Fried chicken, chips, uncooked instant noodles, and even squid! We just drank Pepsi... from what I remember =) Yes, I think it was 8 bottles of 1.3 L Pepsi... ANYWAYS, check out the rest of the photos below! We took the train back to Seoul so that's where we will be in Part 4 of our Korea trip!

Hello Kitty Coin Capsules with a cellphone charm inside. It's a breakdance circle =P
Grace attempting to take a bite from Jon's cheese-stick, without using hands =)
Kim Yuna headphones ^________^
Yonex store in Iksan!
Lots of Korean Yonex stuff! Though mostly last years' stuff.
Galbi Tang - Beef Rib Soup!
'Tang Su Yuk' - Korean Sweet and Sour (Pork)!
Seafood 'jjam bong' (Spicy noodle)
Chinese rice wine? All I know is that they drank 7 bottles @ 56%, and one bottle @ 50% o__O
Pond at Won Kwang University...
... where they threw this poor guy into =P
Shabu shabu dinner with Haeng Ham and his girlfriend!
Most of the Won Kwang University team! =)

Thanks for checking out the blog and be sure to check out Part IV next week!!