Busy weekend to say the least. On Friday I was part of a cultural exchange between some art students from a small university near Gagnam and four of my coworkers. One of our supervisors is an English teacher to these students so she was facilitating the discussion. A lot of the questions were pretty funny like “When did you have your first kiss?” and “What do you think of men’s fashion in Korea?”. Had a great time afterwards at a Hof with the students just talking about our backgrounds. Definitely feel my charades skills improving.

Trading stories and lots of hand gestures with Korean art majors.

   The next evening was my first time out in the artsy university district known as Hongdae. I’ve heard it’s kinda like the Seoul equivalent of Capitol Hill in Seattle. Kinda hard for me to see the resemblance at the moment since a ton of drunken GIs, bars that never close, accents and languages from all over the world make for it hard to see similarities amidst all the blatant differences. That being said I’ve yet to see a whole lot of Seoul and that would be fairly important for comparative purposes.

   Hongdae did have an interesting mix of loud, three sheets and more than halfway in the bag clubs and smaller bars with a lot of laid back Koreans dancing to bands like Talking Heads, MJ and Beastie Boys. Guess which was my favorite? Haha. Definitely the latter of the two. One of the reasons I wanted to go to this part of town was because it never sleeps during the weekend so I knew I’d be able to catch the big champions match between Barcelona and Manchester United. On of my coworkers is Canadian and a big sports nut so he was down to catch the game. It was an outstanding feeling to look around you at a bar that has the game on a huge projector and notice that you are surrounded by a mixture of Brits, Aussies, Canadians and Americans as well as a ton of Koreans. Park Ji Sung plays for Man U so there are a ton of fans supporting the Manxs.

Ji Sung in the heat of the moment.

   I myself am a big Chelsea FC fan but still enjoy watching two great teams duke it out. Enough so that I would stay up until 6am to watch the game. Felt like the World Cup back when I went to college and we’d stay up all night for the 4:30 or 5am matches and make energy or coffee runs at halftime. Makes me miss the old Garden Street 7s house in Bellingham.  The game, especially first half, was very entertaining and Barcelona is definitely making a strong statement to being one of if not the greatest team of all time. It is however a very disconcerting feeling to step out of a bar into dawn sunshine when you walked in when it was still the cover of night.

Not a Barca fan but respect Messi a ton.

   Yesterday morning when I finally woke up (thankfully the taxis are very cheap here so we were able to get back to the apartment by 7) I wanted to go on a mission. All my coworkers have been feasting around me that week and I really wanted to just have a solid meal. I hopped online (I highly recommend happycow.net or a number of vegan blogs in Seoul like Alien’s Day Out) and scopped out the location for Loving Hut.

   Loving Hut is a fairly new franchise that has 15+ locations in Seoul and specializes in vegan food. It had just opened a new location in the International District of Seattle so I was kind of intrigued to see how it was. I’ll definitely be dropping by again soon. Fake hot dogs and burgers will be nice if I get a jonesin for Western food. That’s all for now, prety excited for tomorrow since my uncle has a layover and is trying to come into Seoul. Definitely have to research bus and subway routes and also get my apartment spic and span tonight. Adios Amigos!