A Night In Busan

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How beautiful??
This hurts my heart

One of the girl’s named Nicole that I met through a Facebook group before coming to Korea invited me to her friend’s Rosa’s going away dinner in Busan one weekend.

We all got our TEFL from International TEFL Academy (ITA) so it was going to be a dinner with ITA peeps. ITA is pretty cool. They have Facebook groups and many other helpful resources on their website even after you get your certification.

On the 19th of March, I booked my SRT ticket from Jije Station to Busan for ₩45000. It was difficult. I tried to use my jetBlue card but then realized that I have to use my Korean card. I still had a hard time so I called and the dude helped me buy one. It’s interesting cause you can’t buy a ticket over the phone.. Luckily, for my ignorant self, the guy spoke good English. He told me you have to use the passcode that you use for the ATM. It’s nice but also frustrating at how secure the bank accounts are here.

On the 20th I took the 810 bus to Jije Station Suseo Pyeongtaek Gosokseon (express railroad) for ₩1650 and it took about 25 minutes. I walked up to the ticket booth and showed the guy a picture of my purchase on my phone and he printed my ticket out for me.

The station was nice. It had a 7/11 and a cute little cafe.

I went down and took the 313 to Busan. I got one of the early trains thinking I could explore Busan before our meetup. Little did I know the weather would change my plans.

I ended up in Busan around 10:30am and had a few hours to kill. I walked to a Subway that was about 20 minutes away from the station cause I was starving.

After Subway, I took the bus to where our hostel was located. It took about 45 minutes. Myself and two of the other girls booked a hostel for ₩12000 for the night. SO CHEAP. It was called Kimchee Guesthouse in Haeundae and it was super cute and had a nice little sitting area right when you walked in.

While I was waiting for the others so I took a little stroll and ended up going to Coffeesmith. It was only about a ten minute walk to the hostel from there.

Mermaid Statue

Once Rosa arrived, we left our bags at the hostel and went to grab something to eat. We found this sushi place near the beach. It was one of those sushi restaurants that has a display that spins around and you pick whatever plate you want and at the end of your meal the server adds up the colored plates and that’s how much your food is. So convenient.

We finished right around check-in time- 4pm- so we went back to the hostel and checked in. Then the third girl, Emily, arrived.

We walked around for a bit to kill time. We went to the mall and Starbucks.

We ended up meeting with the others around 8pm at this YUMMY pizza place called SOL in Gwangali. The pizza was actually pizza and not sweet in any way!!! Since they only allow four people per table, two of the girls sat at another table.

I tried a New York Lager and another one that I can’t remember. The place was cheap. Me and Nicole split a pizza and I think we ended up paying ₩20000 each? Plus the beers were around ₩8000-10000.

After the pizza, we walked along the beach. It was such a nice night. We tried going into this other bar but it was too full. Soooo, we hopped on the subway back to Haundae and found a bar over there. It was an Irish pub 💚 so you know what that means! Jameson.

We stayed there for a bit and chatted a lot. It was nice to be able to sit at a bar and drink and talk to people again! Felt like the pre-Covid days. Ahhhh.

Rosa and I were walking out of the pub to go back to our hostel when we saw these people go and sit with the others so we went back in. Turned out they were from Spain and they work here. They weren’t teachers but I forget what their jobs were.

Our night/morning ended at 3am. I haven’t had one of THOSE nights since Thailand and it just made me feel all good inside. Mingling and hanging out with people. It felt great.

Rosa ended up heading back to her town early the next morning. Emily and I woke up around 8am? How??? I do not know. We got ready and checked out and then went to find some breakfast. We walked along Haeundae Beach trying to find something to eat. It was very odd that there weren’t any restaurants along the beach. Naver/Kakao Maps didn’t show any so we didn’t know where else to go. McDonald’s ended up being the winner. While eating breakfast, I decided that I’d tag along and go to Daegu for the day. We booked our ticket for ₩12600 each and finished our meal.

After McDonald’s, we walked back to the beach and ended up finding a Lighthouse Observatory and Mermaid Statue. The observatory was beautiful!!! We didn’t walk down to the statue because there were people taking pictures and we had limited time. We walked to the closest bus station and we were on our way to Daegu.

Safe to say my night in Busan was a success.

Doksanseong Fortress

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Bojeoksa Temple
Ammun Gate

Drainage hole

Doksanseong Fortress Forest Park

is right in the middle of Osan and Suwon.

From Anjung, I took bus 80 to AK Plaza.

I hopped on the Korail to Sema station. I make it sound easy but it actually took me a bit because I went the wrong way. It wasn’t completely my fault…Naver told me to go to Line 1, so I did. Then I saw that the subway was going the opposite way. I was also on the phone, which always makes it worse. Will I learn my lesson? Probably not. I just went back and showed the lady at the ticket booth Naver and she told me to go to 7/8. I mean it was kinda obvious that I had to do that, but I just wanted to make sure.

While on the subway, I fell asleep so I missed the stop. I ended up going to Byeongjeom station instead of Sema station. LOL. So, I got off anyways cause it was only the next stop so I was like, “how far can it be?”

Yeaaaah, too long.

I walked back and took the Korail back to Sema.

From the Sema station, Naver gave me the option to take the 9 or 31 bus. I tried walking up to the 31 but the dude told me no. Luckily, the 9 bus was at a red light. I ran over and the driver opened the door for me.

It was only about a five minute ride and then a hike from there.

The Fortress was up a hill and it wasn’t too steep. But it was tough. I’m also not in the best shape so that didn’t help AND it was hot (~13° C & 55° F). Along the road, there were a few restaurants and some nice houses. After about 15 minutes, I reached the entrance.

After huffing and puffing on the path for 12 minutes, I had FINALLY made it to the top.

I wish that the weather was better that day. And by weather I mean the pollution. It was foggy from all of the pollution 😢

The views were still great though. You could (kind of) see all of the apartment buildings and the city.

I wandered around the Fortress with my selfie stick for about an hour.

I came across a temple.

I sat down in a few spots to just take in the views and relax. After completing a full lap, I decided to make my way back down.

Going back down is always easier. The sun was still out but it got a bit chilly. I opened up Naver and tried to find a bus. This area was very rural so it was very difficult. I should have known.

I saw bus 9 and tried to go on but the driver said that he was not heading to Sema Station. I ended up going into a bakery and asking the lady who worked there and she just pointed me to the bus stop that I was waiting at for 20 minutes.

I walked out of the bakery and took a right. I decided to walk all the way to the station. It took about 30 minutes.

Looking back it’s kind of shocking that I’ve made it this far with all of my unorganized/unplanned journeys… I’m not complaining though. LOL.

Once I reached the main road, there were a few bus stops but I figured since I had already started my way to the station I should just go all the way.

I got to the station, I hopped on the Korail and went to AK Plaza. I went inside and treated myself to some Dozo Sushi then took the 80 back to Anjung.

My day trip was a success and very cheap. Next time I plan a spontaneous trip, I need to remember that I have to find a way back home though. LOL.

I’m Freeee

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I waiting for 12pm since I got here. It’s weird that I can close out all of my apps now because I no longer have to have my quarantine app open at all times.

It feels wrong that I was able to walk outside. I felt like I was breaking the law. Is that what two weeks in solitary confinement does to you?? (kidding)

I just went for a little stroll around my neighborhood and was able to see (up close) the progress that the construction workers had made on the building that is very close to mine. They’ve made quite some progress within the past two weeks. That has been some of my entertainment these past two weeks.

My neighborhood looked a bit deserted from my window.

Turns out it wasn’t THAT much of a desert as I thought it was going to be. There were stores and several apartment buildings and restaurants once I left my street. Everything was about a 5-10 minute walk from my place which is super convenient.

There was a lot to see in my little town; It was riveting. I only walked a total of two miles aimlessly because it started getting dark and I was hungry so I started to walk the wrong way home. Fun. I’m glad that KakaoMap works without cellular data because I would’ve definitely been lost if not. I saw the Dominos that I order from twice throughout my quarantine period. I saw a few hair and nail salons. I also saw a bunch of parks and people walking around. And this box with pet food and water inside that was on one of the walking paths which made me smile and warm inside. HOW CUTE.

7/11. Yay!

I also went to a 7/11 which brought me back to Thailand because 7’s in Thailand were literally every other building. When I went to grab some Soju, they had Singha!!!! My day was instantly made. Quarantine guys, quarantine, it is worth it. The lady inside 7/11 thought that I was younger than 20, which is the legal drinking age in Korea. Good thing is that I downloaded English and Korean on Google Translate since I don’t have a phone plan yet this came in very handy. Of course it made me laugh because that happens to me everywhere even though I’m well over 20. Everyone always thinks I’m younger than 20. Not mad about it but I didn’t have my passport soooo that could’ve been a problem.

I got 2 Singhas 😆

I got a few snacks at 7 to try because why not. I have no idea what they say on the packaging but I got Cheetos and a candy bar. I thought that the Cheetos were spicy but Google told me otherwise. I guess they’re sweet and spicy. They are sweet. Back home, the spicy Cheetos are wicked spicy. I tried.

I’ve been eyeing this place since I got here because I thought it said “Paris Bagels.” Anyone who knows me knows I am have a sick obsession with bagels. After a quick KakaoMap search, I learned that it is called “Paris Baguette.” Still, it’s bread so I thought I’d give it a try on my walk back home. They had quite the selection. I got some egg salad and potato salad to try and this watermelon bar which was palatable because I also love watermelon 🍉 I also got a sandwich with lettuce, tomato, imitation crab, and some spicy sauce.

Today was an interesting day and I am a bit relieved that my city has more to offer than I thought; I feel giddy. I can’t wait to see what the rest of the year holds! Tomorrow starts a new day AND my first school day. I am excited to do some more exploring before school. More pictures to come!