Mar 12, 2015

First full day in Korea

Yup, I'm finally in Korea, aka my first time returning to the motherland in 10 years.

For some odd reason (or out of sheer laziness) I kind of failed to prepare myself for this trip in a lot of ways -- exhibit A: I got rejected at immigration the first time because apparently you have to have the exact address of your destination when you're traveling to a foreign country. I hadn't memorized any of my relatives' address, plus my phone had died on the way to Incheon from Tokyo so I was basically stranded. I finally had to get back in line, turn my brain on (I had been awake for 16+ hours at that point) and plopped on the ground with my laptop while everyone was looking at me weird (again, asians laav to stare). Exhibit B: I went into a 7/11 to buy some coffee and handed the lady money and she freaked out because the cash I had was like, vintage money that basically went extinct like 10 years ago. My mom had given me some of her old change that she had kept from back in the days, I guess, and the lady told me I had to go change it in at the bank. My uncle thought it was funny ("they probably think you're a North Korean spy") and gave it to his 9-year-old daughter to keep as a souvenir from the past. HAaaa.

I don't even have a working phone either, so it's been a real struggle for all 30-40 members of my family here to keep tabs on my whereabouts. Yup. Came here totally unprepared and delirious from the jetlag. Anyway, here are a few shots from my first full day in Korea when I woke up in Seoul early in the morning and drove with my uncle to my grandpa's house in Chungju (Ban Ki-moon's hood - it's about a 2 hour drive) to be greeted with an incredible amount of FOOD. :)

Waking up in Seoul
Coffee & dessert at grandpa's
My uncle holding grandparent's cat that has like 5 different names (ginger, garfield, ya-ong-ee, goyangi, etc)
"fml"
One of many photos of my grandparents as a young couple. Isn't my grandpa such a boss?
Late at night, grandma prepares dduk gook (rice cake soup) for breakfast next morning.