So despite the monsoon that has been over us here in Seoul for the past few days, yesterday I spent time shopping with some friends here. Yes. You heard me. Shopping.
Now, am I good at shopping? No. Do I like shopping? Hell No (ask my sister). But the people I was with needed some supplies( and shoes….) and I wanted to explore, so there I was. It didn’t dawn on me until recently but that was really my first full fledged experience into Korean society and I learned a lot of things.
But to recap my journey: It began with us going to a restaurant that one of the friends (she lives here so we trust her) recommended. It’s famous for this spicy ramen and rice cake mixture called dukkramyeon ( for those of you more knowledgeable about Korean it’s a mixture of dukkboki and ramen). So good and Sooooo much food. And believe it or not this overwhelming amount of great pasta only cost me $7! I didn’t know some of the people in our group (there were 5 of us) so it was nice to eat and get to know them.
One thing that’s very different from the West is that here in Korea there are TONS of restaurants, shops, stalls everywhere. The streets are jammed full of these small businesses and they’re not chains. Yes, there are McDonalds and KFC (even saw an Outback Steakhouse) but those are few and far between. Korea is a consumer culture with lots of options. Shoppers heaven. It’s like those night markets you see on tv….but everywhere and all the time and cheap. This benefitted me in one big way. I had to get a new charger because I lost mine and I got a new one for like $1 (yay).
Well, even though it is a shoppers dream, I am not a shopper. I ended up just walking around and observing as they shopped and I’m glad I did (as I’ve said, some observation posts to come). After everyone had tired from the ordeal we decided to head back. 3 of them had to go to some bank or cellphone place so that just left me and this girl Rachelle. She is awesome and a “fireball” of energy so I knew I was stuck with the right person. While I waited for her to get picked up by her aunt (some of her family is in Seoul) we got coffee and chilled. When she left, I walked back to campus (by the way, I walked a lot and campus was far so my feet were hurting pretty badly). On the way back, I was keeping my eye out for restaurants because in reality I can only ever really think about food. Right when I got to my dorm I fell asleep and stayed that way for like 12 hours.
Like usual, I left out some of the really small details but if you want those send me a message!