Friday (July 8th, 2016) was a really fun day. I finally got a taste of the late curfew (on weekends our curfew was 11pm and on week days it was 9pm). I mean I got home around 9:30pm so it wasn’t too late but I felt very independent controlling what time I would get home. Friday was also my first Korean class that involved taking my first set of tests/quizzes. From now on I would have a grammar/writing test and a dialogue test every Friday.
Author’s note: Korean class was 3 hours and 30 minutes every day. The class was split into two different sections (with separate teachers teaching each class). We had a Grammar and Speaking class with one teacher, and a Listening and Speaking class with another teacher. This will help add to my test explanation. I will make a separate post solely about Korean language class in the future.
First we had our written test for the Grammar and Speaking Class. The test just went over all the different grammar points we had learned in the last week and we had to apply them to different sentences. There was also a section where we had to write full sentences using the given vocab words or grammar point. I did very well on the test actually (it was due to all of that studying). I only got 2 wrong out of 20 or so questions. The ones I got wrong were the two questions I doubted myself on (they were irregular). Either way, I was proud of myself!
Then we did a speaking test for our listening and Speaking Class. In order to pass our speaking test, we had to memorize three Korean dialogues from our textbook. We had to memorize the lines of both characters (the teacher would pick one conversation to test us for our grade). I was never told my exact grade but I do know I passed so that is good!
After our tests, our Listening and Speaking Korean Teacher showed us this video on youtube that was a song about 팥빙수 (Patbingsu – Red Bean Bingsu). It was a lot of fun! It was like a mini karaoke jam session because the lyrics were on the screen. Everyone else in the other classes came into ours during the break time because we wanted to keep on singing through break. Everyone said they were jealous of our cool teacher 😉 We also got no homework for the weekend so that was pretty awesome!~
Take a listen! Patbingsu Song by Yoon Jong-shin (윤종신)
After class, I went to this egg bread place with Sofia, Maris, and Grace. The English translation of the shop was “Older Brothers Egg Bread”. I ordered one with ketchup inside and for only $2, it was very tasty!
Then we headed off to Starbucks to grab something to drink with our egg bread. We couldn’t eat too much because we had cultural activities soon (and I had cooking class so I would be eating whatever I made!).
After lunch, I had a 30 minute subway ride to the cooking classes that were being held at the Food & Culture Academy (the president and lots of famous Korean actors/actresses have visited there!). When I arrived at the correct exit, I was the first one. I was afraid that I simply got the meeting place mixed up so I went back down underground but while I was doing that, I ran into this Korean guy. Right after we collided I immediately apologized in Korean and he immediately apologized in English. We both laughed after it happened and went our separate ways (I just thought I would mention it because I find it funny). I went back up to the exit and I ran into Joy who assured me that we were at the right exit. Eventually JT showed up with Vinzent. We ended up waiting a long time at the exit because Arjun and Ava were both late.
The cooking class was a lot of fun!~ The main chef in charge was super nice and she explained everything really well. She also would tell us the Korean name for every ingredient we used in our recipe. This class we made 해물파전 (Haemul Pajeon- Korean seafood pancake). Mine didn’t end up looking too good but it was still very delicious.
After cooking class ended, Sofia and I went to MyungDong (명동) for the first time on the trip. At the Myungdong station there is a lot of underground shopping. The clothes are a pretty good price and there are kpop stores selling albums and merchandise cheaper than I could ever find on a website (and there is no shipping- SCORE!). At the subway store, I bought Jonghyun’s latest solo album as well as Taemin’s latest album. Lastly, I bought the newest BTS album for a friend back home. When I said thank you and bye to the guys running the store, they were very surprised. It was funny seeing the looks on their faces.
Looking for socks for $1? Check Myungdong station. It is the jackpot!
Right when we got to the most popular street in Myungdong, Sofia spotted a street vendor selling Carp Bread filled with Red Bean! (Something I have been wanting to try for forever). We each bought our own and they were $3 each.
Myungdong is mostly known for all the roadshop Korean makeup and skincare stores (two things I really don’t know much about since I usually never wear makeup). And you can’t go to Korea without buying something from the most famous stores. While Sofia and I were walking around, I spotted The Saem which is the Korean cosmetics store SHINee endorses (If this wasn’t known already, SHINee is my favorite Korean pop group).
I ended up buying a face wash for under $4 dollars which resulted in me getting a free SHINee face mask. I went back to The Saem (still in Myungdong, but a different location from the first one) and bought some blush thing for a friend (hoping I would get another face mask) but unfortunately, I didn’t get another one 😦
When Sofia and I were walking by this makeup store called Holika Holika, this lady standing outside shouting the deals at us literally grabbed us by our wrists and forcefully pulled us in. I was very shocked when it happened and after I was inside the store, I was too busy laughing to really care about the intrusion of my personal bubble. I ended up buying a product so I guess their sale tactic worked.
The rest of the night was spent walking around the many streets and taking note of all the different street food that was up for grabs. Eventually we caved in once again and shared a cup of spicy chicken with rice cakes (we ended up not finishing it because our tastebuds had still not adapted to the Korean Spice). We also ended up stopping at a cafe for a little bit so Sofia could charge her phone.
I ended up going to bed really late that night since I stayed up eating watermelon with my host mom after she got back from Hagwon (Korean Tutoring Academy – AKA her job). Late that night I also got a text from my supporter!
And that was my night! My first time in Myungdong. My first Korean language test. My first Korean cooking class. My first text from my supporter. And Finally, my first experience with the weekend curfew. It was a very fun day and it definitely set the bar high for the rest of the summer 😉 Thanks for Reading! Please subscribe to my blog if you haven’t already! 안녕!~
- 엠마 (Emma)