SO…..SHOULD WE GO TO BUSAN?…YEAH I GUESS WE SHOULD GO…SO…WHEN ARE WE GOING?….UMMM….now?
Ok so our last minute trip to Busan was really a last minute trip. As in we ran to get into town to get a taxi and caught our bus 3 minutes before it left.
I guess it all started the night before (Friday night) when all the teachers at our school (8 including Josh and myself) had a dinner with some of the other foreigner teachers in Changnyeong (I think there were 3 other teachers). The night started out at Babo’s which was a new chicken joint that opened up in Downtown Changnyeong not too long ago. Round 2 of ordering chicken in Korea was much more successful as we not only managed to order boneless chicken but got an order of fries to go with it! The chicken this time was much more thickly breaded and covered in a very thin layer of honey-ish sauce. I enjoyed it and so did Josh. The fries were thicker cut, very hot and they came covered in some sweet garlic powder/parmesan cheese (the cheap kind they put in shakers at pizza joints) with some kind of onion dip/tarter sauce concoction on the side. Personally, I enjoyed the fries but others at the dinner didn’t find them to be so great- I think because the fries had a vaguely sweet taste to them that some simply did not enjoy. Going as a large group of foreigners to a rather small restaurant did present some challenges as some of the orders came out wrong/not at all and we definitely stressed out the 1 waiter of the packed restaurant.
After this we ventured to a Il Ban Gee (I think this is the name of the restauant) which per my mom is a chain of kimbop/other Korean fast foodish stuffs and ordered some kimbops to go. Unfortunately I was unable to order mine without processed cheese (KIMBOP FAIL!!!) but I still ate it and I’ll admit it wasn’t bad (but there’s no way I’m ever ordering it again, you better believe I took home a menu and Skyped with my mother for 20 minutes having her translate the whole menu so that next time I go I get real kimbop). Also that same restaurant serves some of my favorite Korean dishes such as bibim naeng myun (cold buckwheat noodles in a spicy sauce-don’t judge until you have tried) and duck bock ee (rice cake that looks like a massive noodle covered in spicy sauce, served with tempura to which you can add ramen noodles). Needless to say I have plans to go back into downtown and eat all of these dishes.
And since eating only twice in one night is just not my style we ventured to our last stop of the night- Angel In Us Cafe (no that was not a typo) where Josh and I split a gigantic waffle with 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream on top.
Unfortunately no pictures were taken of this night since both my hands were spent shoveling food into my mouth for a majority of the night.
This leads us to Saturday morning (ahem, it was actually around 2 pm when we finally rose) to Josh and I not being able to make up our minds on whether or not we were going to head on in to Busan. I guess we were exhausted from eating too much the night before so we just really didn’t know if we were in the mood to go through the stress of finding the right bus and then the restaurant we were planning on going to (Josh found what looked like a cool meetup happening on meetup.com) but in the end spontaneity prevailed and we shoved an extra days worth of stuff in our backpacks, ran out the door of our apartments at 5:00 pm, caught a taxi down the street, bought bus tickets and boarded the bus for Busan at 5:17 (bus left 3 minutes later). Once in Busan we then walked to the Subway and took it about 14 stops to the Kyungsung University stop and wandered around until we found the Boston Soju & Hof.
BOSTON SOJU & HOF
Once inside (I guess we somehow managed to be early) we talked with some young Korean folk and awkwardly sat around until the real fun started. About an hour into the party (there ended up being around 40-50 people in attendance) we were all given numbers which corresponded to different tables and I guess you could say that Josh got the fun table (there’s always one table having all the fun). So we learned some Korean drinking games and ate a lot of banchan (think of side dishes) only this banchan was crazy-huge platters of tater tots, fries and wedge fries (that I was really excited to see), duck (that rice cake served in a spicy sauce, only they were cut up into little hearts!!), spaghetti (topped with corn-duh, we’re in Korea remember), and tons of other plates. The party entrance was $20/person but you got bottomless food and drinks. The beer pitchers were really amazing somehow they were bubbling…but I promise I drank mostly Pepsi :). After a few hours at this place we then hit up…
THE BLUE MONKEY
So our first dance club in Korea, that didn’t take very long. Well, first impression of the Blue Monkey was…yeah, not so impressed. It was a tiny club full of foreigners and smoke. But, we got in, put our backpacks into lockers, ordered a round of mek-ju (cheap draft beer) and then hit up the dance floor. Fun was had by all and much mek-ju was spilt (mostly by me).
WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN ITS 2 AM AND YOU DON’T FEEL LIKE DANCING?
You go eat!!! The restaurant we ate at next (don’t know the name) was aesthetically very similar what I am used to in terms of Korean restaurants back home in Cali but don’t let that fool you the food was interesting. There was more beer and soju (the people here can drink their beer and soju) which I didn’t partake in, these small skewers that had olives, cheese, a cherry tomato and a grape (the grape really threw me off), chicken wings and other small kind of bar food stuffs- only Korean style. We all (by this time our numbers had whittled down to about 20) sat around and didn’t really do anything just talked and lounged for the most part until Josh got it in his head that he really needed to have….McDonalds. So naturally the group then split up (but most went home) and some headed to McDonalds and the other half went to find noraebang (if you haven’t experienced Korean karaoke then stop reading this, run to your vehicle and go to the closest one because its amazing!).
McDONALDS ROUND 2
At this point I was in no mood to eat so I just hung out with the others while they noshed on the food of the golden arches.
After McDonalds we re-joined what was left of the group (at this time the group was about 10) and headed to noraebang. I know they have noraebang in the States (and yes I have partaken) but there is something about noraebang in its home country that makes it that much more amazing (or it could be that it was 3 in the morning and the delirium had started to kick in). So we sang and sang and then sang some more. Halfway through someone found the tambourines and then we sang and danced. I sang the Frozen song, Paint it Black, Wonderwall and some other songs including some Lady Gaga before I ventured out to use the facilities. After climbing up some treacherous stairs (I almost fell through a step!) I found myself having another stare off with a pit toilet. Only this time I was in no mood to mess around and just womaned up and did my business. I think with the pit toilet you just need to complete the act it was created for and not try to overthink the logistics of completing the act. After a couple of hours of noraebang we left and loitered around a Lotteria (Korean burger joint) waiting until 5:30 when the Subways re-opened.
HOME SWEET HOME
We took the Subway back to the train station and then took the first bus back to Changnyeong. Once home we took hot showers to wash the death smell off and then slept.