[Adventure(s)] #8: Sixth Week in Korea

Reminder: Click on the titles for pics and videos~

Day 36 (Saturday, July 22): Round 2

OOTD: ㅅeoul shirt, black shorts, black Boy London shoes

Met up with Niki and her mom today and I really did feel like an unnie/언니/older sister to her as I was their tour guide for most of the day. I met up with them and Alex in Myeongdong. We had Myeongdong Kyeoja for lunch at a different branch. I ordered the same item like last time (mandu kalguksu) and I was still blown away even if it was my second timing eating it. We wandered Myeongdong for a bit more and went to see the SM popstore in the Lotte Young Plaza. Pretty cool that there was autographed stuff everywhere.

We headed off to Dongdaemun next and I was really able to go explore the Dongdaemun Design Plaza. It’s been my third of fourth time here and with every new trip, I found out new things and places. The building itself is truly a masterpiece and there were many times when I was thinking to myself, man I would want part of my future home to look like this. Hahaha. In particular there was this one room with tall ceilings, wooden floors, and huge windows and I imagined having a sunroom or dance room like this in the future. Alex had to leave because of a family thing so I ventured with just Niki and her mom for the rest of the day. I went to check out the roses at DDP and they were still pretty even if they weren’t lit up in the night.

Our next destination was Namsan Tower and hank goodness I was able to navigate us to there successfully. Also super glad I brought my mini electric fan to beat the summer heat and humidity here in Korea. We rode up this mini elevator thing up to the cable care center entrance and thank goodness that had AC. I also got some cool footage on our way up

The last time I was here was with my mom and sister at a very late time on a Sunday so of course I was surprised to see so many people. We had to wait in a pretty long line so it was nice that Niki’s mom went to go get us some barley tea so we wouldn’t get thirsty. We finally got to the base of the tower and took some pictures and admire the view right as it began to rain. Good thing I brought my umbrella!

For dinner we ate at this random little shop in the Myeongdong Underground Shopping Center and I swear it was a hidden treasure. Everything we had was SUPER DELICIOUS AND 3,000 WON OR UNDER. WHAT?!?!?! That’s like less than $3 USD. Thats crazy to me. The first time around we got 2 servings of fish cake, some fried seafood, and 2 rolls of kimbap.. The owner gave us ddeokbokki as service (for free!). How nice of him.We got hooked so we got another order of ddeokbokki. All of that for 13,000 won. Gah, I’m so soiled with cheap and yummy food here. I’m going to be so disappointed, especially when I get back to school where there’s mainly mediocre, overpriced food. (deep sigh) Oh I almost forgot to mention that I bought this set of 54 Nam Joo Hyuk mini post cards. Yeah I know I’m extra but I’ve come to accept it. He’s such a great actor and model. Honestly him as Jeon Joon Hyeong in WFKBJ (you should know what this stands for by now) will probably hands down my fave male K-drama character ever. Totally #boyfriendmaterial. I need to find myself a Jeon Joon Hyeong/Nam Joo Hyuk. Hahaha.

Day 37 (Sunday, July 23): What a Workout

OOTD: white double layer tank top, black jeans, black Boy London shoes – later in evening changed to black short sleeve crop top and black shorts

Despite the rain, I was super excited to meet up with my sister today! We met up in Itaewon for lunch so we could get some sushi ( I was craving sushi for a while) but for some reason we couldn’t find the restaurant. We walked all over the nearby area and checked various maps. I don’t know if the restaurant is somehow hidden or is no longer in business. Well, we ended up eating at Tapas Bar and man was it yummmmmmmmmy. We ordered the same Pasta de Gambas which was pasta with oil, and seafood. IT AS SO GOOD. I also realized I have been craving for this kind of pasta too. We also ordered some jamon (cured ham) that came with bread and that was also very  yum. It was nice to update each other with what’s been going on in our lives. Much needed.

We were off to the Seoul Illustration Fair next! Well sort of. I messed up and told my sister that the fair (which was at Coex Mall) was at Bonghwasan and not Bongeunsa so we ended up taking the Line 6 subway all the way until the end. I felt so bad for messing up because it would take another hour to get to Coex and the fair had already started. On the brighter side, we did get to pass by Taerung which I think is the place where Olympians get trained (not sure, I am just referencing Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo here). I also spotted a cool and endearing dude on the subway who was so caught up in practicing his drum performance (I assume because of his hand gestures) that he missed his stop. Hahaha that was amusing.

Well we finally got tot he fair and my goodness, Coex mall is HUGE. It has so many exhibition halls with each one big enough to hold a convention. I’m not kidding. Despite us getting there around 4 pm and the fair being over at 6pm we made really good progress. I was honestly so awestruck by the talent that was in the room and I was definitely inspired as a graphic designer. I have so many business cards I have to look through so I can follow people on Instagram and admire their cute and creative business cards. Hehehe.

My friend Supsup messaged me asking if I wanted to go out with her to the club and since my friend and I have never been, we thought it’d be a fun new experience! We both don’t drink but we love to dance and the thought that there would be Korean music playing got us excited. I said goodbye to my sister and headed home for a bit before going to Supsup’s place to eat some fried chicken for dinner (it was so delicious) and get ready to go out.

We ended up going to Noise Basement which is YG’s club in Hongdae. We spent a few hours there and I had fun dancing with my friends with luckily no creepy dudes trying to talk to me. Whew. I would say the overall experience was alright. Going with friends and looking out for each other was nice and we made some new friends with 2 Korean girls there who were part of our get-away-any-creepy-dudes-don’t-mess-up-our-girls’-night crew. Hahahaha.

I would say that I wished the music was better and that they played more Korean songs. I did enjoy the throwback American musics that I knew the lyrics and dance to, but I was the most excited when I heard Dean’s “Half Moon” (honestly that made my night), Mino’s Body (great for bodyrolling), Crush’s “Oasis” (great summer jam), and Fancy Child’s “Bermuda Triangle” (always a banger). Not sure if I would go often but I would definitely go check out clubs with good music if I went with group of friends. Lowkey want to run into a celebrity at a  club. I knew of someone who was at a club and Jay Park was also there. LIKE WHATTTTTTT. Also some artists (like Dean and his crew) have live performances at clubs so that would be cool to check out.

Day 38 (Monday, July 24): Exhausted

OOTD: overwhelmed black and white top, black shorts, black Boy London shoes – later in evening changed to jeans

Because I stayed up pretty late yesterday hanging out with my friends and working on a presentation for work, my sleep schedule was pretty messed up. I headed off with Lindy and Dorothy to IPark Mall to eat so lunch, do grocery shopping, and work at a coffee shop instead of going into the office to be in a different atmosphere. We went to this Korean fusion pasta restaurant named 니뽕내뽕 and ordered this seafood pasta and rose pasta along with sweet potato pizza and apple mango ade IT WAS SOOO YUMMMMMY. We did some grocery shopping and decided it be better if we just work from home since we didn’t want to lug our grocery around with us. I basically spent the rest of the day working and sleeping. For dinner I just boiled myself some mandu (the new ones I got that are smaller than the ones that are meant to be fried – they are so cute!). I haven’t got much sleep the past few days for various reasons so I hope I can work on that. It gets hard sine I’m a night owl, workaholic, and I ramble when I blog. Welp.

Day 39 (Tuesday, July 25): Reel 2 Real #1

OOTD: sleeveless burgundy top, black jeans, black Boy London shoes

Today was basically living out my K-drama fangirl fantasy. As part of work, Lindy, Dorothy, and I were going to different drama filming locations. Today’s chosen drama is Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo aka MY FAVE ❤ (as you already now). We chose this drama because both my roomie and I are obsessed and we thought it’d be super fun! We knew despite the fangirling that would ensue, it would be pretty difficult getting to the different locations since we had to navigate the confusing Korean bus system.

We started off the day trying to find a selfie stick to help with filming process. We went to Daiso, then to Emart, and then back to Daiso. With our newly acquired selfie stick we were ready to start our K-drama adventure. We took the subway from Yongsan to City Hall and then waited or the 1711 bus and were relieved to find that it was coming soon. We got on and excited to be on our way. After a while I realized that we were going in thee wrong direction. WELP. We quickly got off and then got on the bus going in the opposite direction. Oh and did I mention that I was the navigator for the day? Yeah quite stressful.

After a bus ride that took longer than the estimated 1 hour, we finally arrived to where we needed to be. We tied navigating to the restaurant using KakaoMap (my current location dot thing has been acting up recently and I’m not a fan, especially when we’re no longer in Seoul). Luckily, just as we were walking I randomly turned my head to the right and spotted the restaurant in the corner of our eye/ My WFKBJ senses must have been tingling since we had to turn back around and go down a flight of stairs and we would have totally missed that if I didn’t happen to turn my head. Like I said, KakaoMap was acting up and I guess I had to rely on my WFKBJ radar to get us where we need to be. Jk that’s quite the exaggeration.

It felt quite surreal approaching the restaurant even though in real life it isn’t actually called Bok Chicken (real name: 작은마을 aka Small Horse) and they don’t even sell fried chicken here. But still this place is iconic. We saw the drama possters right when we walked in and I was totally fangirling as we sat down and I took good look around the place. The Bok Chicken sign was hung up on the wall to my left and the restaurant sign was signed by a bunch of the cast. AHHHHHHHHHH. MY HEART CANNOT HANDLE. We also sat at the table my faves sat at in the drama. Okay maybe not the exact table and chairs but the location is the same okay? We ordered soondubu (tofu stew), kalbi cheese rice, and unlimited side dishes that consisted of spam coated with a light alter of egg, tonkatsu, corn with mayo, kimchi, etc. EVERYTHING WAS SO YUMMY. Tbh kind of glad they didn’t sell fried chicken because I would have gotten sick of that real fast. Our meal in total was 17,000 won. Again for all three of us. A little less than $17 USD for such delicious homemade quality food. I AM GOING TO MISS THIS SO MUCH.

We then were off to our next location: Yongin University. We knew better and headed over to the bus stop across the street to catch the bus, but we were kind of confused since the bus sign didn’t give us an estimate time for when it would arrive. A nice ahjussi on a motorcycle tried to help us out and reassured us that we were at the right stop. The bus finally came and we were off to our next destination. I was so tired that I ended up dozing off and waking myself up to make sure we would get off at the right stop. Well we got off at the stop KakaoMap told us to get off at, and well, it wasn’t the most accurate. From where we were dropped, we walked a few blocks to see a huge rock sign that said Yongin University. Well that looked promising. False. According to KakaoMap we had to walk about 25minutes up this slanted road to reach our destination. Excuuuuuuuuuse me? I mean we don’t usually mind the walking since we do that all the time here in Korea, but the heat was ridiculous. Like it was blazing hot people. Even my mini electric fan wasn’t super helpful.

We decided to stop by a convenience to get some water and get refreshed by some AC. The ahjumma there was super nice and we ended up saying there for about 15 minutes talking to her and getting the stuff we wanted. I opted to get the Jeju tangerine popsicle which was super refreshing. Lindy did most of the talking and asked the ahjumma about good Korean snacks to bring home, so she showed us around the shop and ended up giving us shrimp snacks for free. What a sweet lady. We were also informed that there was a bus stop right at the entrance of the school, so KakaoMap = huge liar. So disappointed. We were a little upset but still remained positive since we got a chance to talk to this ahjumma. Lindy loves it whenever she gets to practice her Korean. I swear she’s going to improve so much by the end. Me, on the hand, will probably not improve much unless I get over my insecurities and fears about speaking up in Korean. Welp.

We walked more and finally arrived at the school. Whew! We wandered around the pretty nice campus that had a lot of trees and was surrounded by nature with mountains in the distance. We were so impressed we were able to see the mountains since the smog in Seoul usually prevented us from seeing the mountains clearly. Hahaha. The track field was super pretty and although we originally planned to do some sports game competitions with random strangers/students, we were too tired form the walk and heat and we learned that the students  that remained on campus (since it was summer break) were all busy with practicing for their sports. We say some track athletes and decided it’d be best if we didn’t bother them.

We wandered down a path near the field and finally got to our second drama location: the wishing fountain! What an iconic place. We freaked out and sat there for a bit recording ourselves talking about our favorite moments that happened here and why we loved WFKBJ. So many reasons. ❤ It was crazy to think we took a +2 hour trip to get here just for a wishing fountain but hey, got to do it for the fans! After resting for a but and catching our breath as we admired the running water and cool shade, we were off once again to our next destination. We went back to the entrance of the school just to see the bus we were supposed to get on pull away. Darn we had such bad luck with the buses today! We checked the schedule and it said the next bus wouldn’t get here until another 38 minutes. Deep sigh. Ugh. Lindy and I gave up and were just going to chill until the next bus came, but Dorothy wasn’t having it so we ended up hailing a taxi to take us back to the bus stop from before. The ride literally took a  few minutes and was only about $3. Yeah it was worth it.

Thankfully we were going back to Seoul so we no longer had to depend on the complicated bus system. Thank goodness! We navigated out way to Hongdae at ate at our last location which was the barbecue restaurant Hongik Sootbul Kalbi. We got kalbi, samgyupsal, and naengmyeon. Tbh I wasn’t that big of a fan of naengmyeon since the last time I was in Korea, but man my experience at this restaurant eating kalbi and naengmyeon was soooooooooo good. Like Dorothy said, it was a perfect combination. The owner was nice enough to fix up the naengmyeon so it was would be nice for me to take pictures of it. So sweet.

We left the restaurant and chilled at a nearby area where we recorded our goodbye message and then the girls and I talked about life, insecurities, fears, hopes, dreams, and how rejuvenating it is to have girlfriends in our lives. #girlpower We ended our night wandering around Hongdae doing some shopping and listening to street performers. I ended up getting matching “We should all be feminists” double layered tank tops for my sister and I. I’m exicted to twin with her. Hahaha. Even though the day was super long, it was super fun and I was proud that I successfully navigated us to be where we needed to be (even with a few hiccups). I also feel so warm and fuzzy inside when Lindy and Dorothy thanked me for navigating our day. Yay for me living out my K-drama fantasies! Hopefully I can go to the other WFKBJ drama locations and other cool drama locations. We’ll have to see~ I wish I’d be able to run into some celebrities on my journeys too. Hahaha. Fingers crossed~

UPDATE: Watch the video here~

Day 40 (Wednesday, July 26): Chill Vibes

OOTD: sushi gray top, black shorts, black Boy London shoes – later in evening changed to jeans

My boss got us Pizza School for lunch so we had cheese pizza, Mexican style pizza, and sweet potato pizza as well as pasta. We didn’t get to finish them all so we brought leftovers home. I spent basically the whole time at work editing all of the footage from yesterday, It’s definitely a lot but I do have fun doing editing and enjoy playing around with cuts and music (to be exact my Garageband tracks hehehe).

For dinner I met up with Niki and her mom at the Yeouido Han River Park and had the boiling ramen that pretty well known for people who visit here. Basically it’s a vending machine where ramen gets cooked and dispensed in a tin foil pan thing for you to consume. Pretty nifty. The noodles were a bit more chewy than the usual instant noodle and it wasn’t that spicy. I liked it! Super glad that Niki told me about this and I must say, this park is suppppperrrrr pretty. Super excited to come here again!

Even though I had a long and tiring day at work, I was glad I met up with Niki and her mom on their last night in Korea. I learned more about Korea and gained new experiences/found new places by hanging out with them.The rest of the night was pretty chill as we listened to street musicians. We just stick to this group of three guys and man they were amaaaaaaazing. Each of them had a distinct voice/color that somehow melded really well with each other, They gave me the chills. Even if I didn’t now every single song they performed, I still thoroughly enjoyed it. Once again, I am impressed by the courage and the talent of the people I encounter and am compelled to want to try busking. Even if it’s super nervewrecking, I think it’d be a fun experience being able to share my voice and love of music with other people. 🙂

Once I got home, I just showered, snacked on some seaweed, and catch up on blogging since I hadn’t done it since Friday. LOLOL. This is fine. I’m a busy girl and I’m glad that there’s a lot going on in my life that I’m able to experience and enjoy. Blogging may seem tedious but it’s nice to have a space to reflect and I’ll be glad to be able to look back on these posts and recount my memories here in Korea this summer. Also happy that I was featured in Dorothy’s snapchat story where she highlighted my video editing skills and praised my awesome sushi shirt. I find it funny that I always get compliments when I wear my sushi-related clothes hahaha.

Day 41 (Thursday, July 27): Busy Bee

OOTDL: Girl, Girls, Girls shirt, black shorts, black Boy London shoes

I basically spent the whole day editing the footage from our WFKBJ outing. It’s quite time consuming but I must say it’s a lot of fun and I love to be doing more creating again. I had some leftover pizza for dinner and packed myself a whole thing of orange juice in my purple water bottle. Can’t ever get enough of juice.  Lindy and Dorothy really liked the video and thanked me for my hard work. I love feeling appreciated. ❤

We stayed until about 6:30 or 7pm at the office and we decided jut to eat dinner at home and chill since it’s been a long day and I’m in need of recuperating at home after being at out nearly everyday this week. It’s been so long that I’ve cooked myself food and I honestly do miss it. I mixed beef, mushroom, potatoes, green onions, purple onions, and garlic along with soy sauce and salt and ate that with rice. Simple and yummy.

I spent the rest of my night blogging and getting distracted by Vice documentaries. I realize that I really enjoy documentaries and that I’m learning a lot about the world–the good, bad, and everything in between.

Day 42 (Friday, July 28): Everything Will Be Fine

OOTD: “Everything will be fine” shirt, medium wash blue jeans, black Boy London shoes

I was quite nervous about going into work today since we had to prepare a 60 seconds pitch for work. We didn’t even know we had to do this until this morning. Welp. I wore my “Everything will be fine” shirt to reassure myself and luckily, everything went okay. Oh also! Probably one of the highlights of my day was showing my boss the WFKBJ video I helped filmed and have been editing for the past 2 days and having him totally love it. He was so impressed by all of the b-roll and the way we edited the video. Looks like it might even be broadcasted on the next episode of our company’s TV show. WHOOOOOOW. Yay for being appreciating for my work and gaining more creative confidence! I also felt super fuzzy since Lindy and Dorothy were emphasizing to him how hard I’ve been working on this. Gotta love my girls. ❤

Lindy and I made plans to go watch a baseball game with Alex int he evening so we rushed home from work at about 4:30pm and quickly changed and ate dinner (I didn’t finish so I had to put the leftovers in the fridge for later). We rushed onto the subway and go to the Sports Complex at around 5:50pm. My goodness was the subway crowded when we got on. Luckily at the Express Bus Terminal, a lot of people got off so we finally had space to breathe again. Hahaha. Alex got us 8,000 won tickets that go us pretty decent seats so that’s cool. I can’t believe how cheap it is to go see a baseball game here. Once again, I feel so spoiled. Oh and also, baseball in Korea is SO LIT/HYPE. There’s fan chanting all the time (which tbh got me distracted/intrigued so it was hard for me to pay attention to the same) and every player has a fan chant, sometimes even multiple fan chants. It was Doosan versus KIA who are both good pretty teams (currently 3rd and 1st place respectively in Korea) so it was a pretty close game throughout. Lindy and Alex were entertained by my reactions and Alex said I was a wholesome baseball fan since I seemed to be cheering for everyone (I was just so hyped up by the fan chants). We all agreed to root for Doosan since they were more of the underdogs tis time around and since they were from Seoul. I was pretty entertained throughout despite being upset at first that I forgot to bring my memory card in my camera. UGH. I guess, retrospectively, it was a good thing I didn’t bring it since I would have been too caught up trying to get good pics. It’s good to live in the moment without worrying about capturing the memories beautifully with a device.

After more bonding with Lindy on the subway ride home, I got home and showered before eating the rest of my dinner from earlier and finishing the rest of my orange juice. As Lindy would say, me and my juice. Hahaha. After a long and pretty eventful day, I’m glad to be just chilling as I listen to new Korean music and blogging. I must say. The summer 2017 comebacks and debuts are absolutely slaying/on fire. SO MUCH GOOD MUSIC = VERY HAPPY JOANNE. 🙂 Kind of excited because I might watch a Thai movie starring some of my fave Thai actors and it’s called Cat a Wabb. With an artsy shy girl as the main character and a cute guy as well as cats, I’m so down. It looks funny, relatable, and cute!

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