We lived in the Korean countryside for over 2 years and not that many people are fluent English speakers there, so Hugh and I got into the habit of not really moderating what we said in public. In Seoul we still sometimes say things loudly in English that maybe isn’t the most appropriate thing to say.
We were in a department store when I was asking Hugh to comment on the size of my butt (I wasn’t sure about Korean sizes). A guy walked past and obviously heard and burst into laughter. Like that sudden snorting laughter. His laughter made me laugh as well, but reminded me that many people can understand me here.
Have you ever had a situation like that before?
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Visitors to Korea may notice Christmas decorations up when it’s nowhere near Christmas. I’ve definitely seen them up all year round. When I ask Hugh about it he says it’s just because people think they look nice. Christmas is a couple holiday in Korea but there are still a lot of Christmas decorations around, so they have adopted that element of Christmas culture, but not the culture of actually taking them down after Christmas! I think for western countries, besides from the belief some might have of them being bad luck if kept up, we take them down because they lose their importance and meaning if kept up all the time. I think in most countries Christmas trees are taken down in January, unless it’s a lazy university student’s share house. We appreciate decorations when we don’t constantly see them and that’s what makes Christmas a special time. Seeing a dusty Christmas tree in a cafe in July is just depressing (seen that many times in Korea).
I understand that Hugh really likes how pretty our tree looks, but I’m still going to take it down.
When do you usually take your Christmas tree down? Or throw out if you have a real one?
That time Seungyoon from Winner sat next to me in a little ramen restaurant.
Occasionally we see Kpop stars around because we live near YG Entertainment. I don’t think those experiences are what fans from overseas think they will be. If a celebrity is all dressed up and looks happy to be photographed it’s okay to approach them. But the hat and mask look is usually very clear sign that they may not appreciate being approached, and that’s usually how celebrities look in public. It was pretty clear Seungyoon had just popped out to eat dinner quickly and was probably in middle of recording or something. I actually really like Winner so I really respect Kang Seungyoon and that made me not want to say anything at all. So I ignored him the whole time. Luckily I was with Hugh and Han, so I did actually talk to them and hopefully wasn’t as awkward as I portrayed myself in this comic.
I tweeted about it later because I know some Winner fans follow me and someone retweeted my tweet and said something like, “Oh my life goal happened to someone else!” It made me laugh and hopefully it was a joke and they want more out of life than just eating Japanee ramen next a Kpop star.
When Sara was in Korea I got her and Hugh to do the Play Doh Challenge. They had to make certain animals and I guessed what they were. Hugh’s always seemed to look like they had been run over by a bus though…
We did our best to recreate an Australian style Christmas in Seoul. We sourced some things locally but also had some things sent from Australia like gravy, Christmas crackers and Christmas chocolate. Our friends Han and Sophie and their kids Alice and Gyo joined us for Christmas lunch.
Hyunwoo (from Talk to Me in Korean) and his family also visited in the afternoon.
Hugh didn’t really experience a real Christmas until he met me, but there was a Christmas song back in the 90’s that touched his heart.