This is some of our favourite fried chicken! Easy to eat, so much flavour and cheap and convenient. And not good for our diets! We went to Mangwon markets for it. If you go on a weekend, the lines can be ridiculous though.
my korean husband
Our second week in Seoul and yet it feels like we have been here for so long! In this episode we talk about celebrity sightings, show some more of our area and talk about what we do for a living.
It’s been great to easily go to restaurants we like as well as being able to cook at home. We are slowly exploring more and more of our area.
We quite regularly walk past the YG Entertainment building on the way to the station and there are ALWAYS fans there, but it’s actually pretty rare to see much there. Last night we went for a walk and there were a few fans waiting at 1:30am! The funny thing is that Bigbang members can be in the area… but just not there. I notice a lot of fans that wait are international fans, I think some people fly into Korea to just sit in front of the YG building. I totally understand wanting to see it and wait for a bit, but I’ve seen fans who have been there for 6 hours or more, because I walk past earlier and hours later when I have to walk past again… they are still there… Anyway we were pretty lucky to randomly see Taeyang like that when just walking home.
If you have questions, please leave them in the comment section or on social media and we may answer next video!
Hugh runs into this problem sometimes where he says something in English and is not understood because he hasn’t used the Konglish version of what he is trying to say. It doesn’t matter if his English was correct if they can’t actually understand him. My problem is going back to Australia and using Konglish words like English.
He also sometimes uses Australian English which can further confuse people. Instead of using the American English of “take out” he will say “take awayyyyyy” in Aussie English. Some people understand it, but some don’t.
One of our biggest disagreements is about taking the plastic of new appliances. I always want to do it right away but Hugh NEVER wants to remove the plastic. It drives me crazy because the plastic looks messy, but it drives him crazy because he wants to keep the plastic on as long as possible to keep it “new”. I took one line of plastic off the new TV, but wasn’t allowed to take off anymore. When we got the new washing machine I took the chance to take the plastic off right away, much to Hugh’s horror.
Our new video series! We’ll be making a Seoul Life video every week and we’ll talk about how we are adjusting to Seoul, show some footage we have filmed and answer some questions. In this video we talk about dirty apartments and ghosts, show you the Han river, answer some questions and show you the chaos of moving into an apartment and not having essential appliances yet.
About 2 weeks ago we traveled to the area where Hugh’s mother is from and where Hugh spend a large amount of his childhood. It has been many years since they had been back. We visited his grandparents’ burial mounds and paid respects, we also saw many elderly relatives and found the house that Hugh lived in as a small boy.
When Hugh was only about 1 year old, his father became very ill and he had to go live with his grandparents as his mother spent all her time looking after his father. It’s not unusual for children to live with grandparents in Korea, either back then or today. You still see grandparents doing a lot of the child minding in Korea and sometimes children live with their grandparents for years like Hugh did. It was very strange for him to see that area again. He was close to his grandparents and grew up thinking they were his real parents, so the transition of moving back with his parents was difficult for him. His grandfather passed away when he was quite young and his grandmother passed away while he was doing his military service.
Korea has had such rapid development in the past few decades, so it’s interesting to think about what Hugh’s childhood was like in the 1980’s and how it differed from mine in Australia.
I don’t think so… I do try to throw out some of these old items of clothing that are falling apart but they always seem to come back to him. Anyway, he has only been in Seoul for a few days, let’s see in a few months what his fashion is like.
We have finally moved to Seoul. We moved about 4 days ago but we are still very much in this in-between stage of not quite feeling like this apartment is ours yet, and lacking some vital appliances. The move was stressful, like all moves generally are but it has been very exciting. This is our first ever place that is just ours. Even though we have been married for over 4 years, we’ve never been able to have a place that is only ours. We’ve lived with my parents for a little bit, we’ve lived with Hugh’s parents for 2 years, and in Sydney we had to share an apartment because rent prices are so high (Sydney is the second most expensive city in the world). Now being able to afford our own place feels amazing.
People in intercultural/international relationships tend to do more living with parents and also take more time to get settled. It’s expensive to be in an international marriage with visa costs and flights taking big chunks out of incomes. There is also the fact that someone also has to start again in a new country and it can be hard to find jobs and settle down on the right career path. Also in Korea, it’s not unusual to live with parents as a married couple, so we were glad to have that time with Hugh’s parents.
If you follow the social media you would have seen this photo I posted:
Our kitchen is a disaster but I cleared one corner and was proud! Instagram VS reality! Our apartment was pretty filthy when we arrived so there has been a lot of cleaning (we will talk more about that in an upcoming video). We also don’t have a stove top or a washing machine and still need a bunch of other furniture, so we are waiting for that stuff to be delivered.
We are actually 5 mins walk to the Han river (we can also glimpse it through trees from our bedroom window) so we went for a stroll yesterday and vlogged a bit.
I’m so happy to be close to open spaces, because feeling claustrophobic in a city was one of my worries about moving. Our apartment (technically called a villa in Korean) is in a really interesting area and we can’t wait to show it in videos.
We are starting a new weekly video series where we are going to talk about what it’s like moving to Seoul and show clips from what we have been doing through the week. If you haven’t subscribed to the YouTube channel, make sure you subscribe so you don’t miss that.
We still feel like we are in limbo at the moment as we can’t cook in the apartment yet, we don’t have internet… we can’t even wash our clothes. But we can’t wait to share this new journey with everyone.
This is the view from my window right now:
Different from the countryside, but it’s going to be so interesting to see how people in Seoul live compared to those in the countryside.
Thank you everyone for all the messages of support on social media! We appreciate it and we can’t wait to show you our experiences in Seoul and what it’s like to be intercultural in Seoul.
If you are unsure of what a Jjimjilbang is, click here.
When you are in an intercultural marriage, you can’t always pick and choose what aspects from our own culture your partner adopts. I don’t particularly like that Hugh has picked up this Australian aversion to communal male nudity but that’s how he feels after living in Australia. I don’t like the narrow idea of masculinity in Australia and find a lot of things in Korea to be refreshing. But I guess when something is an aversion, it’s easy for others to absorb that thinking too, and Hugh changed a lot in his time in Australia. He very easily slips into a more Australian/western way of thinking sometimes.
Although he grew up going to jjimjilbangs in Korea and being naked with his friends was completely normal, he now feels odd because of reverse culture shock. I wonder if a few more years back in Korea will change that. If not, perhaps he should spend some time in European countries with naked saunas so he can get over it haha.
“Dingle Dingle Dingle” was the best way he could explain what he was seeing in English.
We happened to be passing through Jinju fortress recently so we took the chance to make a little video about where we had our traditional Korean wedding.
Most of the day was just a blur, but it was really worth it. I’ve mentioned before how much I dislike these modern rushed Korean weddings in Korean wedding halls, and although our Korean wedding felt very long, it was completely worth it. It felt special doing the rituals in front of everyone and feeling a connection to tradition and the past. Although the weather was hot, I was so pleased to have a beautiful sunny day for our wedding day.
There were some big cultural shocks on the day, but I enjoyed the feeling of being carried in a gama and all the other elements of it.
In this video we talk about finding somewhere to live in Seoul and moving next week! We looked at a bunch of places and the best place ended up being in Hapjeong, which is a really cool place to live. Very hipster now. While Hongdae has the night life and clubs and that more commercialized type of vibe now, Hapjeong has cool cafes and bakeries and small venues for musicians. We are very close to the Han river and in a residential area, as well as being weirdly close to YG, which is interesting considering how much I like and always mention YG artists.
As we said in the video, our deposit seems huge but is actually on the lower end in Korea. You are just expected to put down these huge deposits for places, and in some cases, the bigger deposit you have, the less rent you actually pay. People borrow money from the bank, or parents or save up for these deposits. What we are paying monthly for rent is very cheap compared to Sydney. While Koreans might say our rent is expensive, for us it’s a pretty good price. The place is small, of course, but it’s a good space and we like the layout. You’ll see it in a house tour video later.
We are really excited to move to Seoul! We can’t wait to make videos about all the stuff we are doing in Seoul and the area we’ll be living in. Stay tuned!
I’m terrible at remembering names in English, and even worse at remembering them in Korean. I don’t remember the names of so many of Hugh’s friends, so when talking about them he either uses nicknames like “Jewellery shop guy” or takes the time to explain how we know that person in particular.
Hugh also has picked up some Aussie ways of identifying people, especially if they have the same name as other friends. We know a “Jenny Jenny”, as opposed to “Microwave Jenny”. That’s an Australian movie reference there… please guess what movie that’s from in the comment section!
I put Megan Bowen to the test! How much Aussie slang can she guess? I tried to pick some sentences that would actually be used, rather than the old fashioned slang that slang books are filled with, but no one uses anymore.
Megan came all the way from Seoul to visit us in the countryside and we had a great time with her. So many of our Seoul friends say they will visit… but never do… hahaha. We appreciate her coming so far to see us.
We filmed some videos for her channel which will be coming later, and Hugh also tested her on Korean dialect, so that video will be up in the coming weeks.
We have been busy on the farm lately. Strawberry season has ended but strawberry plants are being planted for the next season. Hugh has been doing a lot of the fertilizer stuff…. and then not telling me until after I’ve cuddled him.
“Nichola usually doesn’t work on the farm, because she does work inside. I told her to have a rest but she just didn’t, so it’s her own fault! haha. But everyone was quite happy with what she did. She just talks to herself a lot and she thinks her muscles have feelings…”
(I do enjoy doing stuff outside but I have to spend a lot of time inside usually. Even though my body hurt afterwards, it felt good. Those leg muscles don’t know what hit them though!)