Since being in Korea we haven't had time to do lots of fun family things....we had planned to go to the Mud Festival, but that weekend we had the "Koeran Krud" - the sickness each family gets within a month upon arriving to the peninsula. The Korean Krud hit my boys pretty hard and we had to cancel our trip to the Mud Festival.  THEN  I tried to plan a trip for us to Yeosu, you know, the place where the World Expo (World Fair) is going on.  Wouldn't you know it, I started looking too late and almost EVERY train is booked to Yeosu from now until the end of the festival. 

In the spirit of NOT GIVING UP, we started looking into other options and when a coworker of Hubby's told him that he and his family went to the beach the previous weekend we decided to look into it. This sounded perfect!  It is only about an hour outside the city by Incheon Airport and is a pretty popular area.  I can't believe this is the first time we are hearing about it!  We booked a pension, packed a bag and headed West to Eurwangni Beach Saturday morning. 

                             After getting out of the car this is the first thing we saw!  This MUST be a good sign! 
I couldn't believe how meticulous this guy was in making our Mojito. In the end he wasn't happy with the placement of the mint so he took the lid off, used some sort of cocktail tweasers and moved the mint leaves back into place put the lid back on and smiled and handed it to me.   
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5,000 won and delicious to boot!
This is what we saw after mojito man: 
Tent city...I guess you can camp on the beach here...
After tent city we came upon these little platforms with umbrellas.  We knew about these from the year we went to the Mud Festival.  They are super cool, but kind of expensive to rent.  (35,000 won)
However we are not quite as savvy as the Koreans, they bring their grills and really have a feast on the beach...we only had fruit and sandwiches...I was really hoping someone would invite us over for Korean BBQ!  :o)
After setting up camp we headed down to the beach and this is what we saw, and it only got busier.  There were bodies EVERYWHERE. The good news is it was REALLY easy to spot our kids!
Tents and umbrellas lined the beach.
After applying the proper amount of sunscreen, we all headed down to the beach.
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My handsome little bug. Check out the people in the background. The kids were like superstars.
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She really is a good big sister.
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I love this man.
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Just hangingout in the Yellow Sea having a ball.
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My favorite sound on earth...I can hear her giggling just from looking at this picture.
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Do you see what I see? Boy 3 getting thrown from his tube!
KOREAN BEACH ATTIRE:  I felt totally out of place.  I only saw one other lady in a bikini and she was also a foreigner.
If I were a betting woman, I would bet that Koreans don't have as many skin cancer issues as us Americans do.  I've never seen so many long sleeves, floppy hats, sweaters, socks, shoes and umbrellas on a beach in my entire life.  This helps me understand why Koreans have such beautiful skin. 
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This guy is wearing army sleeves. You can buy them everywhere, even while riding the subway.
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Long sleeves and 2 hats.
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This is just sweet. Look at how delicate her umbrella is.
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Look at the couple above Boy 3's head. That girl is wearing a SWEATER. Did I mention it was in the high 90's?
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If you notice, this couple is wearing shoes. The lady had on leather sandals and the guy had on socks and sneakers.
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This lady looked at me like I had three heads. I'm assuming it is because I was wearing a bikini. I think she was worried about my skin - yeah, we will go with that. :)
Pension House:  A penson house is a hotel of types - is a traditional room  that is mostly preferred by Koreans. It has floor heating to keep the floor warm during the winter season and rooms with no  bed -blankets are placed on the floor for sleeping.  The pillows tend to be hard and made of sand - pebbles - I'm really not sure what their pillows are made of.  With all this being said, we THOUGHT we knew what we were in for. I mean we have stayed in a pension in Korea before.

We rented a 2 bedroom pension with 2 bathrooms. We were all hot and nasty from being in the water so we were going to take showers and head out to dinner. We have 2 bathrooms so 2 people can take showers at the same time - right?  WRONG....in the 2nd bathroom something was missing - the shower head!!!  The plumbing for a shower was there, but the shower head and faucet to turn the shower on were NO WHERE TO BE SEEN.  I can't even imagine what could have happened to them.  Down to one shower - 6 people taking turns.  We stuck Boy 3 in the sink and showered him here:
I wish I had taken more pictures but I was a little freaked out by my surroundings and it was DANG hot inside the pension. There was ONE air conditioner in the main room of the pension and one fan - we moved the fan into the main room and shut the doors to the bedrooms in HOPES that the main room would cool down while we went out to eat. 

Check out this bedroom:  The wallpaper was attached with tape - well, kind of.  True story.  It was lovely.  Oh, check out those floors.  They felt like plastic and you could lift it up. 
At this point the children are freaked out.  Especially Boy 1.  I continued to be positive and kept telling them it was not so bad. I said "We are going to come back and play games - it will be an adventure!  Something we will look back on and laugh.  WE ARE GOING TO HAVE FUN DANG IT!"   

Then they showed me the towel I had to dry off with after my shower.  Again, I laughed and said.  "This is awesome!  A totally Korean experience.  This is a great!"  (They still were not convienced.)
Our beds.  Totally what I expected.  All a part of the fun! :o)
Me - "The beds are all made! We aren't even going to use the bedrooms.  We are going to have a big sleepover!  This is going to be so much fun!  We are going to play games and hang out together all night!" 

Boy 1 growls.
 
Hubby turns the TV on to watch the Olympics while we are getting ready to go out to dinner when I hear: "There is no sound.  This remote is not turning the sound up even though it shows it is.  What the blank, blank, blank is wrong with this blanking thing." A few minutes later I hear "the blanking button is broken on this blanking TV.  Are you kidding me?  How much did we blanking pay for this blaking place?" 

I couldn't  help but laugh and say "We are going to have fun!"  with the sweetest southern voice I can muster as I'm drying off with my little hand towel.
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Did you notice the wall paper? One wall is orange the other is pink with something on it? The pink patterned wall paper only goes 1/2 way up the wall, and then it is a different wall paper. It was awesome.
Finally we headed out to dinner. Korean Chicken and Beer.  At least we know everyone likes Korean chicken.
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Boy 3 learning a life lesson - how to open a bottle.
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Can't you tell by the look on my face..."We are having a great time!"
After Hubby licks my face everything turns to pot.  The kids start drinking from watering cans,
crabs and shovels.  Chicken is thrown.
Boy 1 just wants to go home and disown us all.
After dinner we have another fun bathroom experience.  The Korean coed bathroom.
Finally we get back ot the pension where we play Charades.  It was totally fun - there was lots of laughing and cutting up. Until one word was "MOM" and it was acted out by by one of my children.  (I won't mention which child but it is possible he is pictured below.)  There was lots of silent yelling and finger pointing.  It took all of a millisecond for the rest of the audience to guess "MOM"!  Humm, I think I need to do some soul searching.  (And I didn't think I was a yeller...)  It was still fun even after I realized my kids think I'm the evil yelling woman.  :)
As we were settling down for the night, the noise level in the pension was on the rise. Hubby suggested that we just pack up and head home.  I was insistent that we stay - reminding him that we were having fun and that I was looking forward to hitting the beach again tomorrow.  I told him it wasn't that bad...we were fine.  Plus, when I am at home I always feel like I need to be working, when I am in a hotel I can at relax - even if the hotel is falling apart around us.  He agreed and we lay on the floor to go to sleep. As I drifted off to go to sleep Boy 1 started freaking out doing a crazy ass man dance and said a big spider was crawling on him, he said it crawled on his arms and his face and there was NO WAY he could sleep with that thing on the loose.  I growled at him and told him to suck it up - we are having fun (dang it!)!  He tried, but kept freaking out.   Hubby and I were facing each other when Hubby quietly said to me "I think we should pack up and go home.  Call it for what it is and go home and sleep in our own bed."  I didn't say anything for a little while...then I checked the time.  Yes, we can make it back to Yongsan before curfew. 

The Pension at Eurwangni Beach beat us down.  We packed up and headed home, only to get home and find out our air conditioner was broken. 

We are still having fun.  Just ask our kids.  :o)
Tracy
8/4/2012 02:40:06 pm

I can not stop laughing...you should publish this Trish! I miss you so much. I can not wait to read the next one...: )

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Cindy
8/4/2012 11:24:22 pm

Your family is amazing! I'm glad that you had SOME fun along the way!

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Cyndi
8/4/2012 03:10:21 pm

what a trip!!

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Tracy
8/4/2012 04:22:49 pm

This is one of your best posts ever! I was laughing so hard! Best part is that Jer is wearing the hat Bill gave him! LOVE IT!!! hope your air conditioner is working now!!!

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Trish
8/4/2012 04:28:16 pm

Hubby wears that hat and the t-shirt all the time! I can't tell you how many times he has been ask if he is a firefighter. We think of you guys all the time. Miss you friend.

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8/4/2012 10:29:06 pm

That is the Spirit! Early in the morning, I am sitting here cracking up wanting to splat my coffee out...Love it!

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Rachel
8/5/2012 07:05:55 am

oh my! hope your AC got fixed quickly

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Joy
8/5/2012 09:19:31 am

The pebbles in the pillows are buckwheat... supposedly good for you like everything else but not really a comfortable pillow.

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8/5/2012 04:06:18 pm

I'm so sorry for laughing - I bet you were all hot and tired and miserable - but I know you'll look back on this in years to come and get a good laugh out of it as much as your readers did! The bathing suit thing was not too surprising - I walk all the time in the mornings at Yongsan Family Park and I am the only person there not wearing a sunvisor/mask/sleeve gaiters/jacket/gloves/scarf/long pants - even when the temps are unbearable! We just got back from home leave yesterday, so everyone is slightly jet lagged, but hopefully we can meet up before things get too crazy during the school year!

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Jenna M.
8/7/2012 06:27:26 am

Oh my goodness! I get the feeling that day will definitely wind up as a favorite "this one time, when we lived in Korea," story...heeheehee!!

I have had such fun reading your blog lately. I found you a couple months back when we first found out we're headed for Korea this fall. I love getting to see Korea through the eyes of a fellow military family!

I would love to ask you a couple questions about your time there in the ROK. I've seen you mention that y'all have a dog. (sorry about that y'all sneaking in there, old Texas habits die hard...ahahaha!!) If he flew over with you, how did he make it from the airport to Yongsan? We'll be flying with our two dogs (yep, we're crazy like that...) and we've had a hard time getting some straight answers on how the pups will get from Incheon to Yongsan. We've been told that they can be put under the bus like all the other luggage, but we've also been told that this is a big no-no and that we'll have to arrange for a pet transport company to move them. I would love any feedback from y'alls experience.

I love reading about all the fun things there are to do in Seoul and was wondering what highlights you would reccommend for a jet-lagged family with two younger kiddos (7 and 1) who will probably only be in town a few days (we'll be heading on to Daegu after hubby in-processes). I'm sure toy alley and some much needed running around time on one of the playgrounds will be the highest priorities on my kiddos' lists. :)

Thank you so much for such a wonderful blog!
Have a wonderful day!
Jenna

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Trish
8/9/2012 07:36:50 am

Thanks Jenna! I love it when people tell me that have popped in to see what is happening in my world and I love helping people so I am happy to answer your questions!

We did not fly our dog over this time. #1, it was already too hot in Texas so the airlines would not fly him. He would have to wait. #2 he is getting old and crotchety and the last international flight was very hard on him, I'm not sure he would have fared very well. #3, he is living it up in Texas with my niece. However last time we flew here Max flew on the same flight as us and our sponsor picked us up from the airport. I would suggest asking your sponsor if they could do this for you. (Do you have a sponsor?) It is Texas HOT in Korea right now so I would hate for your dogs to go under the bus. How big are your dogs?

Oh, and I just reread that you guys are going to Deagu….3 more hours from Seoul. Humm…let me do some checking. What day do you fly in? Also if you leave another message please includes your email address and I will email you directly.

My kids love toy alley. The aquarium in the Coex Mall is fun! Take a trip up to Seoul tower (very close to Yongsan) – there is a bus that takes you there for 700 won per person right outside the Itaewon gate, ride the cable car down. Try dried squid! 
Good luck on your move and let me know if you have any more questions.

If/when I find answers about the dogs I’ll post them here if I haven’t heard back from you.

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Jenna M.
8/10/2012 01:12:41 pm

You know, I totally had a brain fart when I wrote that comment. :) I completey forgot that you said you flew into Osan instead of Incheon. I think I'm trying to block out the idea that we might have to catch a ride on the "Kayak" as well...heeheehee!!!

It looks like we'll fly into Incheon sometime the first two weeks of October. Port Call still hasn't released the authorized flights for the next fiscal year. So we don't have definite dates yet - grr! :)

We do have a sponsor (who has been great), but since he is in Daegu, I don't think we'll see him until we arrive there. We've been told that we'll be at the Dragon for at least a couple days, but that it's not unheard of to be there for up to 10 days before moving on to Daegu, depending on the influx. I'm pretty sure the hubby asked our sponsor for info about transporting the dogs in his last email, but that was just within the last couple days, so we haven't heard back just yet.

Our sponsor was able to get us info about boarding the dogs at the Yongsan vet while we are at the Dragon, so we'll be making them some reservations soon.

I completely understand the "joys" of taking dogs on international flights. Thankfully, we've been very lucky in our PCS timing and have always fallen in those magical few months a year when the temperature restrictions were not in effect. We have two huskies, weighing roughly 35lbs and 65lbs. Our little one is our old lady (almost 12) who would usually rather relax on the couch than run around in the heat, and the big guy is our youngster (roughly 3) who still has those moments of puppy dorkiness. :) Thankfully, both seem to do pretty well with long flights, although this one will definitely be longer than our flights to and from Germnay.

Thanks for the great sightseeing tips! I think my kiddos will love the aquarium and the cable car ride. I will have so much fun seeing my daughter's response to eating dried squid. :))

My email is 3rdGenerationMilitaryWife@gmail.com

Thank you so much for your response and I look forward to seeing what new adventures y'all have in store!

Kelly
8/9/2012 11:22:53 am

That's a heck of a lot of clothing...my kind of beach!

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LeAnn
8/11/2012 11:25:28 am

I just love reading your adventure stories. Couldn't stop laughing! So glad you had a good time. :)

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Rosa Byrd
6/8/2013 03:19:56 pm

We have been in Yongsan for 4 months. I just found your blog and I love it. I'm hoping it will inspire me to travel away from Seoul more. Did you stay in the Pension because it was right on the beach and cheaper for a family of 6 ? Since it will just be my husband and me...he prefers a hotel. Are there "Hotels" right on the beach too? Any you would recommend ?

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Minjun Kim
5/7/2014 12:31:23 pm

Wonderful blog! I am wondering where this place is???
P.S. your wife is hot

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Sadia
5/14/2015 11:26:50 am

Trish your blog is superb...i really enjoy reading it...i am here in seoul from last 1 yr and looking for some beaches close to visit...ur blog give me the complete pic of Eurwangi beach....

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