Goodbye, Korea

I leave Korea very very early in the morning on Tuesday the 28th. Every time I pack, I start crying. Every experience here, good and bad, keeps running through my head and I’m too easily overcome by emotion to control it.

I’m still way behind on updates here, but once I’m back home again and lack a social life, I’ll pick right up from where I left off. Still have looots of trips and events to document. Stand by.

Edit: Not sure if/when I’ll get around to continuing my updates. Life has actually been somewhat busy and I have found it hard to set aside time just for updating this blog. But I am STILL willing to answer any questions that anyone has! Please, ask away. I still want this to be a resource for people!

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | 12 Comments

MBC Tour

Through Yonsei’s Company Tour club, Krissy and I went to the MBC Dream Center on April 14th to tour the place. It wasn’t incredibly exciting, but we got to see some drama sets and studios and even passed by rooms where stars get their makeup done or rest between shootings.

After the tour, the club leaders took us to a nearby Chinese restaurant and bought the whole group lunch (probably the best part of the whole day, honestly, haha).

I am going to miss the food in Korea soooo much. ㅠ_ㅠ;

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Trip to Jeonju

On April 9th and 10th, I went to Jeonju with Roger, Brandon, and Krissy! We used Visit Korea Year’s free shuttle bus for foreigners once again.

We were dropped off at Jeonju Hanok Village, so that’s the first place we explored! It was a big area with lots of traditional houses and shops and restaurants.

After that we headed to Deokjin Park. They had a big lake there where you could ride pedalboats! Of course we had to do it.

After riding the boats and exploring the area, we went to Daehangno – College Street. It reminded us of Sinchon.

First things first, Roger had to buy new pants there because the ones he was wearing ripped in the butt when we were playing a game at Deokjin. ㅋ… When we found a store, one of the guys who worked there talked to us for quite a while and then showed us where to find a jjimjilbang for later. We ended up inviting him to karaoke with us. It ended up being a really fun night… that I don’t remember the second half of. Except the part when I drunkenly walked into the men’s locker room at the jjimjilbang and ended up just standing there covering my eyes in shock instead of running out, until Roger and Brandon saved me. Goodness. This is what happens when you mix soju and beer, everybody.

Cut to the next day. We explored various famous streets of Jeonju and just shopped for a couple of hours. Most of the time we were in an area called something like “Walking Street.”

I bought a couple of things, my best purchase being these shoes for only $20!

Love them. They are so fierce yet so comfortable.

Around this time was when my camera died. The only thing I’m missing pictures of is when we went back to the Hanok Village to eat lunch before catching the bus home. We ate at this very outdoorsy, traditional, run-down looking place because it had the biggest kimchi pancakes we’d ever seen! We ate both a seafood pancake and kimchi pancake which were more than enough for all of us, and the owners gave us a huge bowl of makgeolli (rice wine) as well as a small bowl of silkworms. ㅠㅠ Well, we ended up finishing everything. The pancakes were delicious, the silkworms were kind of gross, and the makgeolli was great but they gave us perhaps a bit too much, heh. Brandon ended up getting drunk, and let me remind you that it was about two o’clock in the afternoon at this time. Haaaah.

This was an awesome trip, partly because it had places to explore that were not like Seoul, but it was not so rural that it lacked comfort. And partly because we made a new friend who we had a fun night with. And partly because traveling anywhere with good friends is always wonderful!

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Vandalism? Thievery? Anything For Big Bang Posters!

A while ago, YG Entertainment and Yonsei announced this “collaboration project” called YG Idealist, which I think had something to do with choosing seven Yonsei students to receive an opportunity to compete for an internship position or something with YG Entertainment. Not sure of the details, but the point is, there were TONS of posters put up all around the school that had giant pictures of each of the Big Bang members’ faces in order to advertise the event. And of course, evvveryone wanted these posters; or ideally, to collect all five (one of each member). Every day, there seemed to be less and less posters – of course because people were taking them down for themselves. We had to act soon, so late one night when there weren’t many people around, we went out and slyly scoured the campus.

The results?

Vandalism or not? I say eh, they were bound to be ripped down eventually anyway. I feel no remorse! My room is now even more Big Bang filled than before!

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Slumber Party and Homemade Breakfast

One random day, Krissy, Roger, and I went out in the morning to eat breakfast for once in our lives – an actual American breakfast! We found a place in 이대 (Edae) called La Sim that had pancakes, french toast, and other breakfast foods for good prices ($5-$10). This inspired us to plan our own homemade breakfast day the following weekend!

So on April 2nd (after hiking), we went to Grand Mart and bought all the ingredients we would need for the next morning: pancake mix, milk, bread, eggs, cinnamon… Then, we invited a bunch of friends over to party and sleep over that night!

The next morning we got up to make our big breakfast! Despite our hangovers.

I missed American breakfast so much! This nearly made up for it! But I still can’t wait to go to IHOP when I get back to the States.

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged , | Leave a comment

April Hiking

On April 2nd was the Yonsei International Hiking Club’s second hike of the semester. Master Kim took us to Bukhansan again (almost starting to get old, hehe) but on quite a difficult course this time. Some parts literally involved rock climbing, such as scooching ourselves up two parallel rocks using our backs and feet. Probably was the hardest hike yet, but was fun as always.

Somewhere near the top. Sporting my new Yonsei sweatshirt which I love!

Master Kim never forgets the sign. (photo from club website)

Free lunch makes the difficult hike sooo worth it every time. (photo from club website)

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged | Leave a comment

Yonsei Fitness Club MT

This semester, Roger and I joined a club on campus called Yonsei Fitness Club. It’s unlike Mentors Club and Yonsei Global (the clubs that all the foreign students here join) in that it is pretty much all Korean members! It’s more of a real Yonsei club, none of which we joined last semester. Although it is all Korean members, most of them speak English, so we are able to communicate with them just fine.

A benefit of being a part of this club is having access to the campus gym, which students normally have to pay a monthly fee for! We had to go through a short interview process to join (probably to make sure we weren’t lazy-asses who represent exactly what the club is not). We were both accepted, had to pay a ₩50,000 club fee, and now we can use the gym anytime, which is convenient since we no longer have access to the SK Global House gym this semester.

But the best thing about this club is the members! It’s full of really fun, nice people, many of whom are quite good-looking by the way… Anyway, the MT (Membership Training, which if you remember from previous posts is basically just an initiation party involving eating and drinking and usually a sleepover) was on March 19th. They rented out a giant room (kinda like a small apartment, complete with kitchen and living room) in a hotel and… well, ate and drank and played lots of fun games (inside, AND outside on the roof) and passed out at late hours. Not only was it a fun time but we learned lots of new games to teach our friends later. MT success!

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged | 5 Comments

Trip to Busan with EAP

The free two-day trip that EAP planned for us this semester was to go to Busan! Exciting! We gathered early in the morning on March 12th and set out on the four to five-hour bus ride south, and would return the night of March 13th. Our first stop when we arrived: Jagalchi Fish Market! We explored around, tried live octopus, then ate a delicious seafood-based lunch. Afterwards we walked around the outside area, soaking in the ocean air and appreciating the BEAUTIFUL weather.

After that, we moved on to Haedong Yonggung Temple and explored that for a few hours.

We then went to eat dinner at a place called Il-beon-ga, which had THE most delicious kalbi possible. Definitely was a high-end, expensive place. Amazing dinner. After eating we went to Arpina Youth Hostel to check into our rooms, and from there we all had free time to go and do whatever we wanted! Six of us decided to taxi it to Gwanganli Beach to play, followed by some time at a bar playing games and drinking Busan soju and beer.

Woke up early the next morning to sandwiches provided by EAP, and soon left for Nurimaru APEC House – an international conference hall. We explored the inside, which was just eh, but the area surrounding it was beautiful. We trekked from there to Haeundae Beach, where EAP organized us into teams to play athletic games. The winning team would receive a ₩50,000 gift card to split amongst themselves. And whaddyaknow, the team I was on – Team B – won! Hooray for team effort.

We ate lunch at a huge buffet place called Food Story. SO many different kinds of food. SO good. But right after that, it was time for the long bus ride home. Fun weekend. Except for this:

I hurt it during the athletic games (severely stubbed/bent it on the person in front of me during the crazy caterpillar game). Couldn’t walk right for about two weeks and it was painful to move it or touch it. Thankfully it’s all better by now!

Ah, I’d love to go back to Busan even though I know it’s going to be super crowded in the next few months… But Busan is one of the destinations of the free shuttle buses for foreigners… So we shall see.

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Jongmyo Shrine

On March 6th I went to Jongmyo Shrine which is dedicated to the ancient kings and queens of Korea. Not gonna lie, it wasn’t one of the more exciting places I’ve visited.

So much big fun empty space!

A liiittle bit dull in terms of scenery. I feel like I’m insulting Korea’s royal ancestors as I’m saying this. But at least it’s another place I can check off the list of where I’ve been to in Korea.

This was a path that the kings walked, supposedly? So I pretended to be one. Until Roger told me I was walking like a gay king. Thanks Roger. Fixed up my form a little bit in the second picture.

Thinks he’s all cool with his perfect kingly walk.

We're having fun... really... ;P

Perhaps the problem was that this place really lacked fun props for us to take photos with – our specialty. Well no biggie, a shrine can only be so fun and diverse and colorful. Don’t be offended, spirits residing in Jongmyo…

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged | Leave a comment

Our Housewarming Party

Right after hiking, Roger and I had to start preparing for our housewarming party later that night! We were to provide the food and drinks, while our friends would provide us with housewarming gifts, hehehe. Of course, we chose Pizza School for food! You can get a whole 8-piece pizza for only $5 or $6, and it’s delicious. And it’s right by our place. We got four pizzas!

Observe the goodness. (credit to Sophia for the photo)

After stuffing ourselves, we opened gifts!

It's like Christmas!

Because we were practically dish-less, we got lots of cups and plates, along with other various items! Perhaps best of all, we got… shot glasses from Sophia! She even went so far as to personalize each one for each of us with glow-in-the-dark puff paint.

Mine says "High High M/V Ho" hahahaha. PERFECT. (credit to Sophia for the photo)

Can you figure out what we're reenacting? : P (credit to Sophia for the photo)

After gifts we started drinking and playing games, and a bit later we busted out the cake!

Cake works at any occasion!

The rest of the night was just filled with more drinking, snacking, games, gossip, etc. Here is an awkward family photo to end this post:

Oh dear...

Posted in 4 - Korea - Spring Semester | Tagged , | 1 Comment