Pop Chinn Stew. That's what Ken called his circumstantial evidence case he tried in 1983 as a young Deputy DA. I listened as he painted a wonderful word picture of his father putting together various ingredients to make a delicious pot of stew. It's been 30 years but that image of his father making the stew hasn't left my mind. In honor of Ken's dad, Vernon Chinn, we want to make some Chinn Stew of our own. Stop by from time to time and enjoy some Chinn Stew as we share some of our family happenings.

Friday, January 30, 2015

New York!

Mom went to New York and became a grandma.  Welcome Little Coco.

Aunt Mary joined the party.

Grandma getting some Coco time

Dad's in love!

Mama too!

All tucked in . . . on the subway.

Beautiful Central Park

There were beautiful Brownstones everywhere.  We wanted desperately to peek in some of them.

Beautiful churches too . . .

The Brooklyn Bridge, night and day views.

The Statue of Liberty on Ellis Island.

Chelsea Market

The new World Trade Center near the 9-11 Memorial.

The Met!

Aunt Mary and grandma doing some sightseeing.

Shake Shack.  The burgers are almost as good as In and Out but the shakes were out of this world.  Yummy!

Highline Park.  They renovated old railroad tracks and stations into a beautiful park and walkway.

At the Rockefeller Center

Outdoor ice skating rink at the Rockefeller Center

Fifth Avenue.
The vendors on Fifth Avenue dress up their windows during the holidays.

Visiting grandpa.
Aunt Mary on the subway, on the way to see a Broadway show.  Grandpa Ratto treated grandma and Aunt Mary to a wonderful dinner out and then to a Broadway musical.
Time Square

Saturday, June 21, 2014

A Marine! A Hero! A New Life!

Bill Hall slowly shuffles into his office, where his oak desk sits in the corner with stacks of 
paper, a laptop, and a printer. His walls display 82 years of life with badges of honor, framed 
photographs of himself and colleagues in uniform, and a poster board with information about 
New Wine Men’s Retreat Center, a men’s recovery center for alcohol and substance abuse that he founded.  

(Please click on the link below to read the full story).


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Going South

Korea hosted the 1988 Summer Olympics (Seoul) and will host the 2018 Winter Olympics (Pyeongchang). She's come a long way from the cease fire in 1953 to proudly being able to host not just one but soon two Olympics.  Why not a third?  Why not in Busan? Why not put in a bid for the 2020 Summer Olympics?

People either love or hate Busan.  We lean toward heavily dislike.  Young people enjoy the night life and the beautiful beaches.  The older folks enjoy the wealth that came with the skyrocketing real estate prices, thanks to the wildly successful port business.  Depending on what site you visit, the Port of Busan ranks 3rd in the word in port traffic (Busan News 2013), 5th (Wikipedia 2011) or 10th (Marine Insight 2011).  Whatever the ranking, it translates into a lot of people and traffic.  Hence our lack of love for the city.  Too many people, too much traffic, and never ending road construction.  The 1-1/2 hour drive south to Busan often ends up being 2-1/2 hours.


All Busan photos are stock photos from the internet.

In order to increase their chances of winning the 2020 games, Busan sought to solve the population and traffic problems by taking advantage of the available land nearby in Goeje.  The problem is, Goeje is an island.

Their answer was to build an underwater (on the ocean floor) tunnel combined with two suspension bridges. Since Korea had no experience in building underwater tunnels, they sought help from Denmark and together, they successfully built and opened the tunnel in December of 2010.  The 2020 Summer Olympics, however, was awarded to Tokyo.  Busan plans to bid again for the 2032 games.

The attached clip of the tunnel project is worth a watch if you have the time.

Jackson (our Cambodian “son”), the kids and I recently went on a field trip to Busan, Goeje Island and Oedo Island.  Oedo (pronounced Whe-Do), a private island purchased in 1969 by Mr. & Mrs. Lee Chang Ho, is now a magical botanical wonderland.  The 10 minute ride took 40 minutes as we detoured to visit some fun little island(ettes) to ooh and aah before we land on Oedo.

New Busan port. 

 Goega bridges 1 & 2 (stock)

 Our GPS shows us driving in the ocean.

(For Korean history buffs, U.S/Korea had a POW camp at Goeje during the Korean War.)

Goeje POW Camp

POW Robert
 Robert and Jackson helping the POWs during their bath time.

It was fun walking behind this group of halmonies (grandmothers) and harabujis (grandfathers) and eavesdrop on their war time reminiscence. 

Until I saw this women's dorm, I never gave much thought to women prisoners of war, of any war. 

 Drying fish in the sun.

The kids passed on the fresh fish and opted for a picnic lunch on top of the Windy Hill.

Windy Hill.  

We topped off the day with dinner at a restaurant overlooking part of Jagalchi Market (Korea’s largest seafood market).

The following photos are from the internet (Jagalchi Market).

There are well over 4,000 islands in Korea.  CNN Travel states 3,358 are officially named.  Below is a link with fun info on 33 islands worth visiting in Korea.