So Saturday after I got my certificate for finishing my Korean class (and with a "see you later" from he who will never call, and thus never be seen again), I packed up to visit Abby in her little town of Naa. Technically the invitation and party was Arthur's, but I find something about Abby just draws me in--she has the gift of hospitality that always bewilders me. Like my cousin Pam, she has an amazing ability to make a home comfortable (and clean, for that matter), and thinks of things for guests that don't really occur to me.
After a few mishaps (i.e. going to the wrong bus station, getting rammed into by an impatient driver) we met up and drove from Ulsan to her town 20 or so minutes away. As I drove around Ulsan in the bus and on the way out in Abby's car, I really admired the town. It has 1/3 the people of Daegu, has more of a retro feel, and from what I could tell was way cleaner.
The night progressed into a barbecue that was fun. Arthur had a lot of friends come in, all of them having exotic (aka not North American) accents, so it was fun to listen to them. One of my favorites was a Korean named Dinny who learned English working in a pub in Ireland. He had the foulest mouth of anyone I've met outside of college--it was hilarious. As the food disappeared (including Abby's fantastical kimchi jjigae, whose recipe I need to remember for home--anchovy powder, red pepper paste, and garlic are the base), the group headed out to the beach for a bonfire, s'mores, and fireworks. It was awesome being right on the sea and hanging out. I really wished Tracy had been there; it would have made it all perfect. Well. Aside from the broken glass in my foot, but that's what taekwondo calluses are for.
As you can see, the next day was beautiful. Probably 75 and sunny with a light breeze, Abby and I did some shopping, visited the beach again, and spent the day being 20-something girls. I came home spent, sore, and full, and looking forward to next weekend when Kate (보배) and Abby (부휘) do Seoul! (서울)
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4 days ago