Ah.... It's the new year! And I'm still 28! Mua ha ha ha! At least for another six and a half months I am.... ^^;. Much to get done before I hit the big 3.0. ;) I must focus! Hmph! Take a deep breath Slim~ And, oh yeah, by the way, I shaved by head. ;)

Ooh, ooh, I thought this was a really cute article about bringing baby to work. Check it out!

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Phew... Finally a lil bit of peace! Most of you are probably wondering how my vacation was, right (just say yes, dammit!)? Ah, indeed you are. First of all, my apologies to my dear friends whom I only got in touch with at the last minute. I was originally going to go to Beijing, but plans had changed and things were kinda all over the place. We'll catch up another time!!! We will!! =) So, my trip to Corea was a very pleasant one. Spent a lot of quality time with my parents and we got a chance to visit the old Seoul (Gyoung Ju). I really wish I had read more about it before I got there, tho... The brief introductions available at the various historical sites even with the help of onsite guides were inadequate, in my honest opinion. I do have a much better appreciation of Corean architecture now, tho. ;)

Few things I learned. People in Corea don't use Google. They use Naver, and it's pretty damn impressive!!! The amount of info it gives you is way beyond that of Google's. Well, ok, not quite true. Actually, the only part that I really like is the "지식iN" portion. It fuses community-based Q&A directly into the search results, and they seem to have much better content. Of course, that's primarily because so many Corean people use the internet. ;) Oh, and people really use SMS a lot. I mean... seriously... a lot. I got hooked quite badly while I was there, too. Never knew typing Corean on a tiny cellphone was soooo painless!! Beats English out the water and then some!! The widespread use of public transportation system fuels it that much more, I think. Ah, and GPS is everywhere. Practically all cars I've been in on had a GPS installed. I'm positive 100% of the taxis do. Plus the provider of the maps update their maps with all the spots where they have police cameras that are used to take pictures of speeding cars. So with that info, the devices alert the drivers when it approaches such "zones". It's funny how the alert merely says "500 meters ahead of you is desginated as safe driving zone. Please drive under 60Kmph". Then it lets out a nice chime when the car passes by the camera. I guess it's a subtle way of saying "You may once again drive recklessly from now on" ;). Oh, and it seems that delivery costs associated with online purchases is almost always non-existent. But, buying stuff online requires maximum hoop-jumping. Most require that you goto your bank to get a digital signature issued and associated with your credit card before being able to buy anything!! Even then you have to install like 3 activeX controls (Corea is highly M$-centric) before you can checkout. Dang!

I have to say, visiting Gyung Ju and then roaming around the streets of Seoul afterwareds can really give you a perspective on Corea. I think the media displays Corea as if Seoul were the only city in existence. However, there's so much more to Corea than just Seoul. One of the world's most versatile and fascinating language, 5000 years worth of history, and geniunely warmhearted people... It's a shame that the last part of that seems to be fading away in Seoul, tho...

AHHH! I already miss my friends!!! Ooh! Ooh! Take a look at a set up a nice round of 폭탄주(mixed drinks) for all to enjoy. ;) Pictures from the trip can be found here.

P.S: I'm sooooo sorry I won't be able to attend most of my friends' weddings happening this spring and summer..... I reeeeeally wish I could go to every single one of'em... *SIGH* I hope Myunshik and Boram can forgive this bastard of a friend... I'll buy you and your wife something really delicious the next time we meet!!! :D (Hey, how about finding me somebody while you guys are at it?? =P)

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1210 new e-mails in my personal inbox, 702 new e-mails in my work inbox, 527 e-mails in my administrative inbox, 233467 in my dedicated spam inbox, 1 load of laundry to do, 2 bags to unpack, 2 rooms to vacuum, 3 book reviews to complete, 470 photos to upload, 109 recordings to download... ahhhhhh.... Good to be back ;)

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