Saturday, June 07, 2008

KR Travelogue Day 6c: Before Sunrise Moment

Brrring. Brrriing. Aaaargh, just when I’m in a hurry. Who could this be?? I walked towards my bed’s sidetable and answered the phone.

It’s Dien. He’s not going to join us anymore. When I asked why, he said he’s going to visit a friend of his living in Seoul.

“Oh, alright. But we’re leaving this hotel together right?” I clearly remember that we have the same time of flight – 10 PM tonight.

“No, I checked my schedule and I was wrong. It’s 8 PM.” He replied.

“What?!?! Good thing you checked again. Anyways, I’ll just tell Esther that you can’t come. Maybe I’ll just see you later. But if not, we’ll still talk in YM right?” There’s no certainty as to whatever will transpire in the next few hours.

After he rang off, I still stood by the bedside; couldn’t help but fantasize with a very special what if. What if, what if Esther cancelled too?? Samuel and I will be left to ourselves to discover Seoul. Weee!! I’m beyond thrilled!! It’s a Before Sunrise moment – one of my most favorite romantic movies. Hihi. But then of course it wouldn’t happen and just even the imagination would be a bit churlish considering that I asked Esther a very special favor. I am to check out already before we embark on our tour and I requested that my things be temporarily transferred to her room. That’s the reason for the rush since I’ve got fifteen minutes left to pack up and you know, prettify myself. Haha!! In fact, some voice within telling me to confirm my flight sked as well but I shrugged it off coz I still have my toiletries clattered around the room.

Anyways, I’m sure it’s 10 PM. Back in the office, I remembered choosing the earliest available flight the day after training – a company policy – 8:10 AM of the daily flights of the Korean Airlines. But since the schedule is somewhat convenient (considering the very “morning” person that I am, hahaha), I had it changed offline after the boss’ approval to the last flight – a habit of mine for my business flight so I could stay more wherever I am going. To be honest, had I only been close to Esther, say Monday, I would’ve called the airlines and have it again deferred to probably tomorrow. Most of the Europeans are leaving either tomorrow or the next (a Sunday). I’m sure she won’t mind. But there’s no point hanging about that now, I’ve to make the most out of this tour today.

I rang Esther to inform her that I’m coming with my bags already. After a quick drop-off, we shuffled aboard the elevator down to the lobby where I made my way to the receptionist. As if on cue, my very handsome date strode down the hall right after I settled my pricey bill. There he stood before us with his brown leather jacket and jeans draped like velvet on his body. He is such an insane turn-on. I, my date and our chaperone (hahaha!!) then went outside to get a cab. It was a crisp and cod morning in Seoul. Prior to that, we asked the bellboy to take us a pic. Ű

(a) restau in the hotel; (b) a temple; (c) Samsung fn. com office; (d) Moi, Samuel and Esther

Not so much has been said during that short trip to Insadong. We were all taking in the very busy Friday streets of Seoul where we spotted more temples, a Samsung office and finally Insadong. The driver just halted on a corner of the street and probably due to incapability of speaking English, gestured as though he’s shooing us off. Haha!! I suggested paying the fare. Gee, what’s up with my generosity today??

Insadong is nothing like I imagined - just a street with different restaurants, stores for different artifacts, specialty items and the like. No clothes – boring!! But ‘s ok. Coz I have Samuel with me (-,-). Not wanting to waste a nanosecond of our time together, I initiated a talk.

“Dien, told me you met each other last night?”

“Yes, in Dong Dae Mun. They said you were buying something.”

“Oh yeah, I was looking for earrings.” It’s confirmed, he looked for me. Weee. I tried hard to suppress a smile from plastering on my face. “So, were you able to buy something?”

“This shirt.” And showed me the one he’s wearing underneath his jacket. Nice one.

“Good for you, I wasn’t able to buy anything last night. We had a hard time looking for money changers. It was already late when we had our money exchanged.” I explained as we walked deeper in the street. Then Esther chimes in that she needs to exchange money. They must’ve seen the look of aghast on my face. Goodness, this could be a repeat of the events last night. Time may be wasted for asking directions alone but I comforted myself knowing that I could get to know him more.

I was right. Some people refused to speak to us while the fruit vendors gesticulated directions that really led to nowhere. If there’s one positive thing about this, we discovered this plaza with very cute statues. It was impossible not to be charmed with these so Samuel and I took some photos.

more sights in Insadong

During the quest for money changers, Samuel and Esther would talk about something in their native language Espanol and I would find myself ambling behind them. Obviously I had zero understanding of what they’re talking about but I was invisible and I didn’t like it. It depressed me. :(

Oh well, he has all the right in this world to break my heart coz he’s one fine specimen of the male specie. Haha!! Now we all know what insidious influence good looks can have on one’s judgement. :P

With some stroke of dumb luck, we laid foot into this street where there is an information center. We scurried inside it this time to accurately ask for directions. Wow, it almost seemed a miracle that the staffs here are eloquent English speakers. We then asked for more interesting places to visit and as always took some more pictures.

There must be something in that information center coz as soon as I stepped out of it, I had a renewed confidence in me. With a sudden shaft of determination, I promised that after this tour, Samuel and I will end up in stitches. Haha!! He’ll be able to see my funny side and I’ll be able to coax a laugh or two out of him. Aah, just to see him smile. :) Just wait, just wait. :P

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