Korean men and me

Or a story about a couple of them anyway.

One beautiful Sunday afternoon I walked to a nearby coffee shop. My plan was to bask in the sun while writing and enjoying a delicious coffee. When I arrived, the owner (let’s call him LP) greeted me. LP was very nice and we chatted for a few minutes before I ordered my iced caramel latte. Pretty soon I was happily slurping away on my delicious caramel coffee milk drink. I wrote for a few minutes. Then LP came by again this time carrying a blanket.

It was perfectly timed. The sun had just set and I was starting to shiver. I gratefully took the blanket and then was given a quick lesson in how to say “kamhamnisada.” I sat for a few minutes more just enjoying the incredible view. I love this coffee shop. It’s one of the best I’ve ever seen.

As it got colder, I decided to head home since I had a walk before me. I paid 5,000 won for my drink then LP offered me a ride home after a quick conversation with his mom. I said, “Sure.” Thinking at the very least it would be warmer than walking.

LP headed out for the short drive to my place. As he dropped me off, he asked if we could “meet” later. I must’ve been feeling good about life because I said yes again and we set a date for a couple days later.

Since we are both late night workers, LP picked me up at 9 a.m. for breakfast. The Land of Morning Calm disappointed us. Most restaurants were closed and none of the local coffee shops were open. So we opted for a chain and headed to Paris Baguette. We took our muffins and juice to Hoamji Rervoir where we talked for a while longer. In a couple hours I learned about 10 more Korean words and phrases while testing LP on his English.

Walking back to the car, LP asked me what I wanted to do next year. I started talking about all the things I want to do travel, make movies, write and enjoy my life. At first he likes the plan, “If you go to Spain, I would go with.” At the end of the craziness (I may have brought up this.), he said, “I think you want to do too much. I would like to get married. Would you?”

Well at least he’s honest.

A week later I headed out with Jamie and Ray. We went for some machu. (I think. It was cow bone, marrow and head.) We met with two of Jamie’s friends Lance and Won. I managed to order hanna mikju juseyo. (One beer please. Oh yeah, I’m making progress.) Won started a three way conversation with me and Jamie. Jamie translated as we talked. Won soon decided I look like Angelina Jolie. I’m sure she looks just like me while she trying not to panic when she sees an eyeball in the jiggae everyone is eating.

The restaurant is pretty close to my house. And the jiggae was delicious–hot, spicy, flavorful. I just had to get passed the cow everything-ness going on. Jamie continued to translate as Won told me I look more like Julia Roberts. I said thank you once I managed to choke down my soju. Eventually Won got around to asking for my phone number. I gave it to him with every confidence he would never call.

He hasn’t.

So it looks like I’m safe from another wedding discussion–at least for now.

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8 thoughts on “Korean men and me

  1. Every time I read about the terrible coffee, it makes me remember that I gave it up to save myself from becoming a 10 cups/day guy. However, reading about you enjoying it makes me crave it so bad!

    I guess Korean guys are sort of like Utah girls, as I have been on a few first dates where the subject of marriage and children are brought up (almost immediately, actually).

    I went to Korea last summer and all I can remember doing is eating and sweating. But it sounds like you are finally really starting to enjoy it here.

    • Thanks for reading Kasey. I somehow managed to avoid the similarities between dating LDS and traditional Koreans, but you’re right it’s pretty similar. They want to get married, have babies and settle down even though they haven’t done much living yet.

      Korea isn’t at it’s best in the summer. I think this past August was the sweatiest of my life. But now it’s cooled off and I’m terrified of the winter. At least I’ll always have bulgogi.

    • Well, he did say, “If you go to Spain, I’ll go with you.” That seems more specific to me than just “I would like to get married one day.” However I do value his honesty about what he wants out of a relationship and we have remained friends. Thanks for reading, Billy.

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