Iksan, Seoul, Gwangju

IMG_3395-1Saturday’s adventure began in the early morning when my colleague, Herbert, and I left WonKwang university bound for Seoul. Upon our arrival to Seoul’s Gonkuk university we parted ways and I rode the subway to Gangnam station. Alone, I had breakfast at Butterfingers and coffee at Marley’s. Later, I ate Indian cuisine for lunch in Apgujeong.

IMG_3412-0Throughout the day, I sent and received messages from my Guam buddy AJ who I thought would be arriving and would need my help guiding him around the city. He has been in Bacalor, India where due to poor internet connectivity we haven’t been able to finalize next week’s Seoul adventure plans. This was supposed to be a fun weekend even though my initial plan to travel with a different group of colleagues to Jinhae City to observe the cherry blossoms fell through. Due to the popularity of the cherry blossom festival and my inability to quickly decide whether to go on the trip partly due to AJ’s expected arrival, I was wait listed. Since AJ did not arrive on Saturday I was left to build an adventurous weekend for myself. Not one to turn away from a challenge I set out to make this a memorable city tour.

After eating in Seoul and doing a lot of people watching from a cafe’s second story balcony in affluent Apgujeong, I bought a bus ticket bound for the United States Air Force city, Songtan, where that night I danced and partied.  After dancing much of the night away at club Velvet I made my way to an after hours spot where someone I had mistaken for a woman followed me. I ran into this person at Velvet. Sensing the awkwardness of our interaction I presumed that this was a ladyboy. Not one to be impolite I tried to broach the subject in a cool fashion so as not to offend. Not the most attractive of women she was. If I had made a mistake I was prepared to apologize profusely. I asked:

Me: are you a ladyboy?

That person said: do you want a ladyboy?

Me: no!

That person’s response alone didn’t leave much doubt in my mind that she was a he. I left it at that. Again not to be impolite I bought him a cheap drink and suggests he take himself elsewhere to play. I was not interested nor would I ever be interested.

The sensation shifted from that of continual motion to a slower pace dotted with sudden stops that were occurring with greater frequency. I sensed that I was near the end of my two hour trip. Initially, I spotted large signs, a huge bus depot, grand buildings with names I had seen in the capital. This city feels large. The bus terminal certainly is just that. Gwangju is much larger and grander than I would have ever imagined. Upon arrival large Night lights reading ‘Arabica’ greeted my eyes. There is a large Shinsegae department store too. This alone suggested that Gwangju is classy and stylish. The only other time I recall seeing one of these department stores is while I was in the capital. I spotted a young non-Korean couple and they confirmed my opinion of this city — classy and stylish. I spotted a couple of twenty-something, tall, and well built Korean women walking around this huge complex. They too were stylish, classy, and not to mention very sexy. This trip to Gwangju rounds out my travels throughout korea. Finally, I have visited every major city in every province in this tiny aggressive country — Seoul, Busan, Daegu, Pohang, Andong, Gangnueng, Jeonju, and Gwangju.

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