korean love confession

9:01 PM Sian Mei Yeoh 4 Comments

this story is about a girl who loves south korea. 

the reasons why are still unclear. she just does. 

i guess that is what love relationships are -- things are difficult to explain sometimes. unconditional love means affection without limitations. things just are, sometimes without reason.

in fact, her love story with seoul had only just begun -- it's only been slightly over a year since she first fell in love with kpop (more specifically, super junior) but the interest soon spread to food, korea's beautiful culture and language. so much so she followed several twitter accounts related to korea.

being a foodie, it was hard for her to admit that it hasn't always a smooth relationship between her and hansik (korean food). truth be told, she started out not liking kimchi all that much -- it was an acquired taste. her first korean food experience was bibimbap and she didn't even eat it the right way >.< but things got better. she pushed herself to taste more kimchi, which eventually found a way into her heart and now she just can't get enough of it. 

her dream was to visit seoul which she managed to achieve this year. the visit has deepened her love for korea and she always wishes to return to be enveloped by korea's warm embrace once more. 

this story is about a girl.

and the girl is none other than...yours truly ^^ 

(i mean c'mon, what else did you expect right? lol)

if you've followed my twitter account, this news is huge for all korean fans ::

asian on air program is an event organized by korean tourism organization (kto) in collaboration with korean air. an invitation to explore and experience the different aspects of korea..

taken from ibuzzkorea website
despite my previous trips to south korea, when i thought i've seen it all, seoul always seems to surprise me with its hidden charms that i can never finish exploring. with each visit to korea, i am filled with the same excitement and anticipation i felt as my first visit. the phrase "so much to do, too little time" often haunts the end of my trips. 

i've always considered food to be the most delicious and fun way to explore a country's culture. so much so that a lot of my vacation photos from anywhere center around food...sometimes more than sceneries. from street food, to little hole-in-the-wall shops to elegant restaurants - all serving the spicy, sweet and savory flavors of korea. 

i'd love to do a food tour, experiencing what locals taste on a daily basis. there is more to korean cuisine besides kimchi, bibimbap and bulgogi and i'd love to taste and share my experiences with others as much as i can -- exposing the different flavors of korean cuisine. i can just never get enough!

as fun as tasting the food will be, learning how to make the local delicacies from a native would be priceless -- be it a korean mandoo or kimchi making classes or anything in between. i've tried cooking a couple of korean dishes but learning korean recipes in its country of origin allows me to learn to understand what gives korean dishes its signature flavors and its history.

on top of my passion for food, i have a fascination for language. learning korean on my own has been a rather slow progress (self taught via ttmik website) so full immersion is considered the best way to learn the language.. speaking with a local in korea would be the best opportunity to put my limited knowledge of korean language to the test and a chance to learn more! meeting some korean friends would do the trick too :)

bukchon hanok village offers so much history behind the beautiful structures of the traditional way of living. it's such a beautiful part of korea, preserved in the midst of fast paced progression of seoul that it perked my interest about its rich history. i'd love to experience the hanok lifestyle including the traditional tea ceremony and the folk games. 

streets in seoul are more than just streets - they are fashion districts and food haven. some well known streets are in myeongdong and hongdae but there are a few hidden gems that i've yet to explore such as apgujeong, garosu-gil and samcheong-dong. streets lined with petite shops with its own personalities are definitely my cup of tea. ^^

i have to admit i am not one with the bridge-visiting but the beautiful sceneries i've seen via blog entries by the han river has left me wanting to enjoy its beautiful lights. the one other thing i'd love to do - photograph the night scene of seoul by the river, to capture the breathtaking colors and bright lights as it etches into my memory. 

taken from wikipedia

annual festival events are often something i look forward to -- and korea does not have a shortage of that. throughout the year there are different festivals highlighting important events during the year and its significance to the community. attending just any one of those would be an experience. it's also a great opportunity to people watch ^^ (not in a creepy way, of course!ㅋㅋㅋ)

taken from hancinema.com

my love for korea was initiated by my love for k-pop but truth be told, i've never been to a k-pop concert before. as an ode to the reason behind the start of my love affair with all things korean, attending a k-pop concert in korea is on my to do list. and let's be truthful here :p -- all k-pop fans love to meet our k-pop idols in person... and so would i. (my fav is super junior, if it wasn't all that clear from the beginning)

taken from kpopstarz

NANTA cooking show has steadily gathered a loyal following since its inception in 1997. as quoted, "NANTA is a non-verbal performance of free rhythmical movements that dramatize customary Korean percussions in a strikingly comedic stage show" -- a completely entertaining play beyond the barriers of language. watching it again and experiencing cookin' NANTA show in the place of origin would be amazing!

namsan tower's locks of love has attracted my attention from the get-go just because of the significance and meaning behind each lock that adorns the fence. unearthing asia has strengthened my desire to add a lock of my own to such a memorable tradition - placing a piece of my heart in seoul

these are just a fraction of what i'd love to do in korea. regardless of how long my to do list in korea is, all i really want is to be part of its culture and learn more about a country that has grown so dear to me. so much so that every visit is like my first time -- the huge excitement, enthusiasm and passion.. dedicated to a country who has captured my affection, south korea.  

if you'd like to try out for this program, check out the website on ibuzzkorea.com :: asian on air for more information. read up the t&c before you join since it's only open to residents in south east asia.

p.s. please send a 'like' my way on facebook if you've enjoyed this entry ^^ leave your comments too! it'd be fantastic to receive some responses! :) 정말 감사합니다! (translates to thanks so much!)


Cindy said...

good luck dear

Sian Mei said...

thanks hun! :D

Chee Ching said...

Hellloo! :D

Your food pictures are making me hungry. Gasp.

Sian Mei said...

@chee ching
always my intention :) i am glad that it's making you hungry :p
all the best with the competition! i am hoping for the best! :D
(keeping fingers crossed!)