Monday, August 18, 2008

Busan, my last weekend

i eat shells for lunch

then I eat raw squid for dinner (still moving, freshly chopped)

dogs. I have more explicit photos but they are quite controversial. if you're curious, I'll email


Beomeosa Buddhist Temple, in the clouds

Our love nest

Uh, no. This is actually seafood

Natural hotsprings
Beers in Busan

Jerry's Birthday treat for me- Italian food!

This past weekend marked my last Sunday in Korea. Laine and I travelled via the KTX train to Busan which lies on the southern tip of Korea. On the way south, I had a three hour "conversation" with a young Korean gentleman who did not write a lick of English, was a deaf mute, olympic gold medalist, and sushi chef. He gave me his jersey.

When we arrived, Laine and I headed straight for the beach which felt like heaven on earth. We fed each other grapes and peaches, then laughed hysterically for hours over a pitcher of beer and talks of international relations and stupid mistakes made in college.

Later, we headed to the largest jjimjjilbang in Asia, spending hours prancing around nekkid and taking dips in "the grape bath", "the salt bath", "the mud bath" etc.

We spent the next two nights in a DODGY love motel. And when I say dodgy, I actually mean really classy. There was even a black, curly hair on the soap.

The following day we soaked our tootsies in the public hot spring, visited the Gupo Market, and made wishes at the Beomeosa Buddhist Temple. The Gupo Market definitely had the most poignant effect on me. We had heard there was a dog meat market there, and indeed there was. Walking that gauntlet was one of the most disturbing things I've ever done. We were shooed through quickly by Easterners who did not appreciate us in awe of the spectacle. Not only were there dogs in cages for slaughter, but goats, chickens, and ducks as well. It definitely moved me back onto the vegan bandwagon.

The following day we visited the Jagalchi fish market which frankly puts Pike's Place to shame. When we arrived back in Seoul last night, I visited Ewha Women's University district which reminded me of Telegraph in Berkeley. I wish I hadn't waited until my last week to find this place; it was fantastic- bustling with an eclectic mix of restaurants, vendors, and people.

This evening Jeremiah took me out for a lovely dinner to celebrate my birthday. Check out the dessert we had! While the food and company was fantastic, the best part of my evening was doing what I've long been pining to experience in Korea- using a bidet! Although I felt slightly violated, that was an experience worth having at least once.


Anonymous said...

Hi Sweetie,
Courageous final week-end in Korea!
Vegan or my spaghetti? Let me know what to cook for your return to SD!
Can't wait to see you! Need flight info and exact time of arrival.
Love, love, love

Elyse said...

Olivia! I can't believe it's already your last week!

I hope ALL of your friends out there are treating you well on your birthday - but worry not, upon arrival in san diego we are going out for round two of celebration :)

Happy birthday love. Bests with you last week.

ps: love the picture of the temple! hate the idea of the doggies. kona says bowwow

Anonymous said...

Hi Baby,
Today is your birthday and I am thinking of you and the miraculous event of your birth back then with great fondness and tears of joy in my eyes. Look what you have become! Happy 24 and many more to come!
Love you very much,

Anonymous said...

P.S. It is the 20th in the U.S., the place oy your birth!