Friday, March 20, 2009

Seoul - Summary Of Day 1

DSC05415
Kimchi is too common in Korea, just like how people associate sushi with Japan.
  • The pilot began to brief the passengers on-board, in Korean. Find it funny at first, but slowly think that it is just as much as annoying as the announcer in Japanese with those high-pitch voice. Touched down at Icheon International Airport which was covered with thick mist. Visibly distance was reduced to less than a few hundred meters only.
  • The lady at the immigration asked me a simple question - "Where are you staying?" in English upon seeing my Malaysian passport. My answer was "Japan", then "I'm a Malaysian" until I finally realised that what she wanted to know was the place I'll be staying during my time in South Korea. That must had happened because I was already started to begin to feel lost in a foreign country lol. Anyway, I passed the Immigration without any problems.
  • Took out some yen to be exchanged to won (pun unintended) upon exiting the arrival hall, and tried to find the nearest telephone booth to contact my friend, Heng Chiang. Too bad he was having his class then, and I called Wei Guang. Before anything, I ran out of coins and the call was cut-off halfway. Saw an airport staff who has been looking at me for a while and asked him in English if he'd exchange some coins with me. He rejected the 1,000 won note I gave him in exchange, and thanked him immediately with a slight bow. Note to self: Koreans don't bow, do they?
  • Finished calling and returned the remaining coins to that kind man. He accepted it from me with a smiling face. This time, no more bow from me.
  • Went to the bus platform 10A and saw a bus which I thought it was the one I'm supposed to take. Just to make things certain, I tried asking the two men standing there. Too bad I can't speak Korean, so I just passed him the paper I wrote a night previously and he knew for instant where I wanted to go. However, he raised his hands, moving it to the left and right continuously. I know that wasn't the bus I should be taking. "No, no, no?", I asked him. "No, no, no," he replied while showing he a hand signal to wait for the next bus.
  • Sat down and waited for the next bus, while thinking about the silly incident with the two men moments ago. Smiled to myself and said, "This is gonna be a hell of an exciting trip!". Wonder how many more similar chicken-and-duck-conversation incident will I have to endure throughout this trip.
  • Bus finally came and he told the driver about it. Both of them nodded to each other, and I hoped the bus driver will drop me at the right location. "Ticket?", he asked. I told him back, "None, none, none". Bought the ticket which cost me 13,000 won and board the bus. I was alone in the bus throughout the journey from the airport to Korea University Station's stop. This gave me the chance to hop around the bus, looking outside through the window throughout the ninety-minute ride. The bus driver turned on a Korea drama, which is older than my age I reckon. Yet, I still watched it attentively to improve my Korean (as if it's gonna happen lol).
  • Reached the bus stop which is just next to the subway station. Went down to call Heng Chiang to pick me up from there but again, ran out of coins. Went into the convenience store and asked that young guy if he speaks Japanese. He gave me a blur face like this o.O
  • Tried my luck by asking him in English and showed circle sign with my fingers to point to the shape of the coin. He got what I was trying to tell him. He exchanged the coin for me almost immediately. I thanked him in Korean, but again he gave me this face o.O
  • Called and was picked up by Heng Chiang and went back to his place, ten minutes walk from the subway station. Was introduced with a couple of his other friends and several others later that evening. We clicked almost immediately and crapped for some time before they went for their classes. I took a short nap out of exhaustion.
  • Wei Guang and his friends came back from their class and we went out for dinner together. That was my first Korean meal here and it was not bad. Best of it, it was so freaking cheap compared to what you can get in Japan. I am so gonna eat a lot throughout my time here!
  • Came back and had another bonding session together and they continued with their studies while I blogged this entry. BEFORE THAT, SKYPE WITH BABY FOR LIKE ALMOST TWO HOURS WITH A WONDERFUL CONNECTION HERE THAT SHE SAID SHE COULD HEAR AND SEE ME SO CLEARLY. Will be off to bed after this to get a proper rest, for tomorrow, I will start exploring the city of Seoul.

14 comments:

Endoru said...

I expect lots of updates on "food". :)

=chuan guan= said...

more more more..pics pics pics..more more more more more more more!!!!!!!!

calvin said...

@ endoru:
yup, the first day was nothing. i expect more to come too =D

calvin said...

@ =chuan guan=:
i will only do entries with tons of pictures when i am back. for the meantime, i'll just make a daily summary =)

specialhuman said...

did u go korea because last time i ask u to? :P

MichelleG said...

eh what about spending time on9 with me.. T___T

zek said...

hey, i'm in korea too!

calvin said...

@ specialhuman:
not really. hahaha =P

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
you know what? i think i will become more kingyo when i'm tired. never mind, let me edit the entry, okay? i will put big big caps lock <3

calvin said...

@ zek:
serious?! o.O
how long are you in korea?

Endoru said...

期待してます^^b

calvin said...

@ endoru:
already had at least three different kinds of food today. detailed and proper updates will be done later =)

MichelleG said...

haha why caps lock, sounds like im forcing u oni. <3

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
that's a redemption from me for forgetting to mention that on the entry =)