Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Wedding Daze..

Down to Busan for a wedding…

I purchased the tickets entirely in Korean .. probably quite ungrammatical, but I was able to communicate that I needed two tickets on Saturday, one from Seoul to Busan and one from Daejeon to Busan and they needed to be together.

Small victories.

The Korean class is helping… the tutoring helped a bit, but the class is quite intensive (although only six hours a week, the instructor piles on the homework and hammers the two of us in class). I finished the first class, 1.1, with the tutor and now I am working on 1.2. There are three classes per level and I hope to go through all of them. It will depend on how long I am willing to drag my ass to a class that is MWF from 7 to 9 at night.

That is particularly galling on Friday, when I should be out hootin and hollerin in Itaewon.

Still, got the tickets and headed down. As I love trains immoderately, this is always a good thing, and Korea is still a beautiful green color as you 300 km/hr your way through it. Yvonne hopped on at Daejeon, and we were fully away.
At the Busan Depot we ran into two other couples who were going to the wedding and headed out to Gwang alli together. Grabbed a nice cheap (about 38 bucks US) hotel room with a view of the beach and headed over to the wedding.

It was mercifully brief, as Korean weddings can be, and then it was down to the cafeteria for a meal. The pic just above is the lovely couple working the room at the reception in a pub and the one down below is Yvonne smiling because this wedding gave her some new, expensive, ideas to try to pile onto our wedding. The post-wedding cafeteria served some really good food, and I had time to enjoy it with my friends.

At BKF’s wedding I was part of the photo-shoot after, and so by the time I got to the cafeteria everyone from that wedding had eaten and departed. I was the lone Waegukin in the vast hall, and so I ate quickly and skeedaddled. This time we all stayed at the tables until the beer and soju was gone. Then it was off to the deck of a pub which overlooked the beach. More idle chit-chat and general tomfoolery.

Many of the party headed off to a bar, but I headed back to the hotel while Yvonne went downtown to meet her friend Katie and her boyfriend du jour. I did absolutely nothing productive besides watching two episodes of The Simpsons.

In the morning we had coffee on the beach and boggled that, on a weekend as beautiful as it had been, essentially no Koreans had headed to Busan for the beach (that picture from the hotel window will give an idea). Korean vacationing runs on a rather rigid “season” basis and this is not the season to go to the beach.

Consequently, Koreans don’t.

I type this on the way back up to Seoul, Yvonne already dropped off (sob!) at Daejeon. Got a longish piece edited for BKF and finally finished my review of Yi Chongjun’s The Wounded. That pic at the bottom is of my little office on the KTX

If I do a little Korean homework tonight, this trip back up will have brought this weekend back from completely non-productive, to pretty good. And with a trip to the beach and a motel as well.

Can’t beat that.


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the editing job done well for the play script. It is submitted on time and the thing looks good. I talked with the person in KLTI who commissioned me the job. She said she would definintely include you with me as a pair on contract from next job on. She said she knows your name, but never associated you with me.

I am delighted that your Korean is improving with a strict regimen. Elbow grease is more of what one needs in the beginning of learning a second language. Others call it, commitment, of which I believe you'll have no problem.


ps. I know of the meercat-like group mentality of Koreans taking vacations, but it's really something else to see it in the picture with a beautiful beach with virtually no one on it. Can you imagine how packed the place would be when it is in season?

Charles Montgomery said...


LOL at "meercat-like."

I should go back in season and take a picture of the beach. It does get nearly shoulder to shoulder. Still, it's a thing foreigners can take advantage of to see some truly spectacular parts of Korea while they are almost deserted.

I'm still trying to find a reliable Korean to talk to regularly, but the classes are helping and I intend to take the next one in October and take a partial class in November (til my family shows up for my birthday).

If the KLTI woman has anything else to send along, she can feel free.

Anyway, my plan is to come to the US in late January or early Feb and stay nearly til March..