Korean School Lunches

As an EPIK teacher you are entitled to lunch at school everyday. It is not free, but it is very cheap at about 3,000won per meal. You can opt-out of these lunches if you don’t like them.

I decided to give school lunches a try for a while before deciding if I wanted to continue or opt-out. After a few trial weeks I decided to continue with the school lunch because they are pretty good! The food isn’t always amazing, but we all know I’m super lazy and there’s no way I’m waking up extra early to make lunch when the school lunch is perfectly fine!

I spoke to one coteacher about the preparation of school lunch. Unlike most public schools in America that just heat up frozen nuggets, she said that Korean cafeteria staff make all the school lunches.  I’m sure there are a few things that are frozen and heated up, but as far as I can tell most of our food is freshly made and prepared by the cafeteria staff. Continue reading


The Quest for the Perfect Kimbap

My American friends all know how delicious kimbap 김밥 is because I forced them all to try it at some point and got them all addicted to its amazingness. One of the things I was most excited about doing when returning to Korea was eating a whole lot of Kimbap! What is kimbap? It looks like sushi, but it’s not. It’s better!

Initially I had a pretty hard time finding a kimbap place near me. I even mentioned this to a teacher at my school and the next day there were three rolls of kimbap on my desk! I have no idea where he got this kimbap, but it was amazingggg! Even the other Korean teachers I shared it with were saying how good it was. I need to find out where he got it.

I was also given some peach. My coteachers love to feed all sorts of snacks at school.

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Pizza Uncle

After school one day last week, my managing co-teacher took me outside of Busan to get what she called “the best pizza”. It was maybe a 40 minute drive from school (traffic!). We weren’t in Busan anymore, instead we were in Ulsan. This area wasn’t in the big city of Ulsan, it was a village on the coast called Seoseang (서생).

It was a really rainy and gloomy day, but somehow that made it atmosphere seem better! We pulled up to the restaurant called Pizza Samchon (피자 삼촌), or “Pizza Uncle”. This was my coteacher’s third visit to this restaurant. She realllly likes it and says that it is worth the ride.

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Eateries Near SK Global House & KLI

Hungry?  Sick of Cafe Kkini?  Don’t want to walk ALL the way to Sinchon? It’s OK!  There are some great places to eat right near SK Global House and KLI!

1. Lord Sandwich: This building is quite unique.  You’ll definitely see it because it’s kinda oddly shaped.  I can’t say I ever ate at Lord Sandwich, but those who have said it’s amazing.  You do have to pay a bit extra for these amazing sandwiches though.

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Awesome People!!

Edit:  I need to stop writing blogs at 4AM!!  Edited with some grammar/spelling mistakes!  Sorryy.

Last week….I think… Actually I have no idea.  I’ve been so busy and my days have been so long that my sense of time is so off these days!  I thought this morning happened yesterday, but in fact it was today.

Anyways, one night Hyunwoo invited me to a little gathering he was having to meet some bloggers, Korean learners, and teachers in Hongdae.  Originally I was just going to say “Hello” and meet everyone because I had a tutor class shortly after.  However when I arrived in Hongdae my student sent me a message saying that she wouldn’t be able to have the lesson so I was able to stay for dinner. Woot! Continue reading

1st Shop Coffee Prince and Babtol’s

Anneka and Louise came to visit me in Hongdae while I was still living there.  We all wanted to go to the Coffee Prince cafe where the MBC drama ‘Coffee Prince’ was filmed.  I’ve walked by the cafe a few times but I never went inside.  I’ve heard stories about it being expensive and the taste nothing to boast about.  However, since Coffee Prince is one of my favorite Korean Dramas I HAD to at least go once.

Getting there is easy.  Just a bit of walking from the subway (map at the end of this blog entry).  I have to be honest and say I was a little disappointed.  There were no princes.  The waiters were all women.  The beautiful flower painting on the wall was a sticker that was starting to peel off.  The menu seen in the drama isn’t the real menu, which means they raised the prices of everything.  The chairs were cheap and flimsy.  You weren’t allowed upstairs.  Some of the walls were covered with black paper which I think was to prevent fans from writing on them….but it made it look really unprofessional.  The lighting inside was bad, so my pictures came out crappy.  The outside of the building was kind of dirty.  When we were posing with the Coffee Prince sign there were flies everywhere and it kind of smelled bad.

Am I being too negative?  I had really high hopes for the place….Sorry.

On the positive side, it was cool to see the autographs of all of the cast.  You could buy Coffee Prince merchandise.  Our peach iced teas (one of the cheapest items on the menu) were realllly good!

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Namsan Tower, Makgeolli, and Jimjilbang = Awesome Day!

Anneka left to go back to Australia the other day.  T.T  She’ll only be there for three weeks, but that means by the time she gets back I’ll be studying for my final exams and we won’t have much time to hang out.  *depressed*

During my one week vacation between spring semester and summer school Anneka, Louise, Cheryl and I took a trip to Namsan tower.We took the bus there again because its just much easier!  We went later in the day because we wanted to stay and watch the sunset and the lights in the city to come on.  Unfortunately for us the smog level that day was kinda high, but we still enjoyed ourselves!

Wrote my name on the fence at one of the viewing points.  My marker was kinda dead 😦 Continue reading

Hanok Homestay Program

(Updated with a few extra pictures by Jamie!   ….and corrected some spelling errors >.<)

This weekend I had the opportunity–thanks to Hyunwoo Sun!–to participate in a Hanok Homestay program by HomestayKorea.com.  Here is rundown of the program via their brochure because I’m too lazy to re-write everything yesterday that WordPress deleted on me!  Anyways, haha:

If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to live in a traditional Korean house (“hanok”), now is your chance to find out. Participants in this exciting new ‘hanok stay’ program will learn how to make traditional Korean food, enjoy the chance to try on “hanbok” (traditional Korean apparel) and be treated to a guided tour of Bukchon Hanok Village. Each participant will also stay overnight with a host family in their traditional Korean-style residence, where they’ll learn even more about the local culture while also enjoying warm Korean hospitality and experiencing the unique lifestyle of hanok residents. Don’t miss this chance for an unforgettable, one-of-a-kind cultural experience.

Tour itinerary (2 days and 1 night / Up to 20 participants)
Date: Every Saturday (From May, 2010 to November, 2010)

14:00 ~ 16:00
○ Walking tour of Bukchon Hanok Village (English and Japanese narration)
@ Bukchon Hanok Village
16:00 ~ 19:00
○ Lessons on how to make Korean traditional dishes (kimchi, bulgogi etc.) – Chance to try on a hanbok; free entry to the Tteok (Rice Cake) Museum
@ Institute of Traditional Korean Food
19:00 ~ 22:00
○ Hanok stay (1 Night)
– Activities will vary depending on the host family but may include demonstrations of Korea’s traditional tea ceremony and/or calligraphy lessons
@ a Homestay House
09:00 ~ 10:00
○ Breakfast:
Western-style (toast, coffee, milk and cereal) or Korean-style (soup, rice, side dishes)
@ a Homestay House

Cost: 65,500 WON (VAT included)

□ Advisory
○ Owing to the age and traditional design of some hanoks, room and shower facilities may not meet
Western residential standards.

I met M.J.–she is who you should contact if you want to participate in this homestay. See the VERY bottom of this post– and the other participants at Anguk station (orange line, exit 2) before starting the tour of the Bukchon Hanok Village.

(Note: The photos in this blog post were accidentally deleted. I have tried to add them but, but 5 years later it was difficult to remember which photos belonged to which houses, so please forgive me if there are photos in the wrong places. I tried my best!)
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Ilsan Lake Park

No school or work today because it’s a Korean national holiday! Today, May 5th, was Children’s Day!

Today I went with my language exchange partner, Eunyoung, and her friend Sun to the Ilsan Lake Park in Ilsan.  Ilsan it right next to Seoul.  From Yonsei we hoped on the red 1000 bus (meaning that it goes outside Seoul) and in about 30 minutes we arrived.  The walk to the park isn’t long.  Maybe 10 minutes?  I don’t know exactly how to get there because we took a detour to Sun’s neighborhood before heading to the park.

The weather was pretty cloudy, but the temperature and humidity were high.  The park was packed!  There were tons of families there (and couples too!) having picnics, walking, riding bikes for two, flying kites, etc.  We walked around the park talking for quite a while.  And it was a good thing.  We were working off all the calories we were about to eat.

100_4132 by na.hyeli.

Proceed to see my stalker pictures of cute children and other random people.  Haha.

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