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> Annals > 2006 > Korea > Korea
by ZweiBieren Korea - June 26-July 2, 2006  The lawn at the Yangpyeong resort. Boathouse on lake edge.
  Classes begin.
Opening reception.
Prof. Lee takes us to Walkerhill and the DMZ.

Monday, June 26

S used computer
faculty luncheon
back to Lyceum to purchase memory stick
walked back along road (took some more pictures)
Prof. Lee took us to a Korean dinner at Walkerhill

Tuesday, June 27

Class: electronics mostly worked. Lunch Popeyes (Cajun)
Evening: welcome reception and performances.

Wednesday, June 28

We took it easy today. I never left the building.What I did accomplish was to create some maps to illustrate this log.

Thursday, June 29          Happy Anniversary!

In the morning I did a bit more on the maps. Then I took lunch down to meet S after her class and went over to talk to Jennifer about the intranet. Its very simple, so the only way to get things to the students is as attachments to notes on the course bboard. I told her I'd make a website to show what could be done. I did: iie337. She used it and the staff asked to use some bits of my site for later years.

In the evening we went out to dinner to celebrate our 38th anniversary. We ate at "The C", the local Chinese restaurant. It demonstrated the challenges of eating in a foreign land. The menu of Chinese food was all printed in Korean. Fortunately, there was a waitress who spoke plenty enough English to get us a great meal. The main dish was pork with vegetables. As usual there were various side dishes: seaweed, onion, pickled radish, kimchee, eggdrop soup. We also had fried rice embellished with egg and seafood. It was excellent. Or else the earlier dishes wiped out my taste buds so I couldn't tell for the rest. For dessert, we walked down the street to Baskin Robbins. S claimed to have seen it from Prof. Lee's car. But we walked down the street quite a ways without finding it. Just then S spotted a bit of pink. "Isn't that Baskin Robbins' colors?" Sure enough, there it was. In honor of the occassion, she had Love Potion #51. I just had Papaya-pineapple.

Friday, June 30      (Pitt payday)

This morning I'm working at minor tweaks to the pictools suit:
  • -w instead of -p
  • $date:fmt inserts date using given format (for strftime)
  • use mailto on S's email addr
  • use left column for back links
  • use bars between back links
  • later: create a makefile to build directory for each lecture
  •     put title into makefile(?)
It is tempting to invert genhtml so the wrapper is the main input and -c introduces the captions file. Then I could run without a captions file. The default captions file would be generated from the names of all .jpg files in ./.

Right now I'll just put dates into the lecture files via its wrapper.

How to transform powerpoint lectureXX.ppt into lectureXX/lectureXX.html:
    generate .gif from the powerpoint into subdirectory iie337/lectureXX
    in that new directory, run
            genthumbs 180; mv thumbs-180 thumbs; gentxt -p Slide
            genhtml -n 2 -w ../lectures.tmpl -t "title for this lecture" captions.txt
    edit iie337/lectures.html to refer to the new lecture

Spent most of the afternoon adding a -p prefix switch to gentxt so files are not listed in the order Slide1.JPG, Slide10.JPG, Slide2.JPG, ...

ben has set up a .ssh directory on physpics, so I can use sftp without password
now I need to use sftp from makefile

right now:
  finish genhtml.txt
          add $!(xxx) which interpolates the result of system(xxx)
  get lecture3 out to the website
  re-save pictools to physpics

  • need a smaller twomugs.gif for tagline at bottom of file
  • create Makefile for building lecture
  • figure out how to get title into both lectures.html and lecturex/captions.html (probably can use new $! to get title list from a file to generate lectures.html
  • put up this Korea log !!!!
  • switch lectures over to the new back link style

Saturday, July 1

AM: gym.  Then we went off to the "Korean Village" trip. Although I was a bit surprised to find that we just taking the subway to a local park, this turned out to be a delightful trip. For our 600 won we got transportation, an enormous lunch, and admission to the park. I took a hundred photos of which at least a dozen were worth foisting upon viewers.

PM: Lunch on the tour was at a local Korean restaurant. We were offered our choice of noodles with bean paste or a seafood soup. I chose the soup. But first they delivered an enormous platter of sweet-sour chicken. I gorged. So by the time our main dishes came, I had little interest. And they were huge. Each bowl was enough for our table of four. All delicious.

We walked to the park. The village houses were of the open air variety, built around courtyards. But there were heavy wooden shutters to close the space in when winter cold arrived. And chimneys suggesting that fires under the floor kept the rooms reasonably warm. (The chimneys did not rise even as far as the bottom of the roof, so they probably got smoke into the house. There were wicker screens between the chimney and house, but they didn't look particularly effective.

After the village, S insisted on going shopping. Aiming for Lotte, we wound up at Shinsegae. Ultra-upscale and crowded with shoppers. Like HomePlus, the basement was food shopping, but here there was the highest of high-class food. The coffee bar was Duchamps and featured big ice cream sundaes. I looked for cheese. This is not a popular food in Korea. All I found was brie at more than 12,000 won/pound and Kraft singles. Wallace (Grommit's pal) is a great cheese lover and would have been devastated if required to shop here. I bought no cheese.

We subway'ed home and taxied up the hill. Then I fell asleep on the couch before supper. After, I sorted the pictures and wrote this note.

Sunday, July 2 - A trip to the DMZ.

Prof. Lee very kindly invited us to visit the DMZ today. We drove about two hours around the city and to the Northwest. At its closest, the DMZ is only 30 kilometers from downtown Seoul  (National Geographic map). I've created a map based on Google satellite images and marked with the DMZ key points.

Our first stop was the Unification Observatory. This building is high atop a bluff overlooking the Imjim at a point where is separates North and South Korea. It was too hazy to see much. More impressive was the barbed wire and observation posts lining the South shore of the river. We lunched there on Be Bim Bop, a tasty concoction of vegetables and rice.

Our second and last stop in the car was at the tour office/amusement park where tours to the DMZ are booked. During the half hour wait, I took lots of pictures of the amusements. Once aboard the bus our first stop was the Dora railroad station. Train lines have recently connected the two countries on a line through this station. The North, however, reneged, so trains are yet to run. They will probably begin once the North is further along with its planned free-trade zone in Gaeseong, about 10 km North of the DMZ.

There is a railroad tie in a place of honor in the station signed by my nation's president. Staying with his election-proven themes, he signed it with the wish that families would be reunited across the border. Apparently, no distance from the States is far enough to get him off-message.

Next we visited another observatory right on the edge of the DMZ itself. There was a hazy view of the flags each country flies day and night and Panmunjeon itself in the distance. The colonel took my camera. I was standing behind the line marked for cameras and holsding it high above my head to try to get anything. He asked for the camera, took it to the edge, and shot the shot I wanted. He gave the camera back. Sadly, even his rank and privileges were insufficient to dispel the haze that rendered the picture mostly useless.

Lastly we visited "The 3rd Tunnel." At this site we were able to walk down an 11º down angle bore hole for 385 meters into the actual tunnel itself. The borehole was dug by the South with a machine that looked about 50 m along all by itself. At the bottom we entered the dynamited tunnel created by the North. It was an impressive achievement for hand labor and also showed the solidity of the mountains hereabouts. A bent-over walk of another 400 meters brought me to ... nothing. Just a roll of barbed wire and a wall with a door in it. A sign explained that no one goes farther. We would then enter the DMZ -- albeit underground. Curoiusly, there was a crack at the edge of the door and behind it was -- light! So is there someone in there or is it light for TV cameras perpetually alert for visitors who have yet to come.

A final exhibition hall showed that such vigilance is not unnecessary. Every few years the North makes some effort to show that they are still intent on "rescuing" the South from its capitalist bonds.

We returned back across the "Bridge of Freedom" to the amusement park. The bridge may be the most heavily patrolled in the world. Every 50 meters across the bridge are baricades forcing the bus to lurch from side to side.
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