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Incheon and its Charms

April 2, 2009

dsc04015Bupyeong from an 18th story window.

Okay, so I guess this blog has been a little Seoul-heavy, but I think, perhaps, it is time for me to give props to my actual neighborhood. For those that don’t know, I live in a neighborhood (a “dong”) in a district (a “gu”) called Bupyeong. As Incheon goes, it’s the “party” area of town, which means it has a few bars, a lot of hofs, and little arcade games with soccer balls for drunkards to kick at 3 am in the morning. I’ve been known to bag on it a little bit, partly because I’ve gotten sick of seeing the same crowd week after week, having the same conversations. But now that Russell’s here (now that we seem to have no friends), and it’s become a place that I’ve been forced to rediscover.

Jinsanmi or “the Wedding Alley” – is as Russell put it once, “a gigantic alcoholic pinball machine.” My favorite hangout around here is Saigon, a Vietnam War themed bar complete with tin pans, army uniforms, and a stack of old TVs where people have written personal messages to each other. Also, the lemon soju is excellent.

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Beyond Cafe – where am I right now, drinking a Junebug and enjoying free wifi (because there is nothing like getting tipsy on a Thursday night when you clearly have shit to do– again paraphrased from Russell) is amazing, Nice atmosphere, iced green tea lattes from heaven, and free surprise! pizza some nights. A small place to definitely check out, though sometimes they place an uncomfortable amount of Jack Johnson (but as a Californian, I feel like I can appreciate him more from a distance… though not a whole cd’s worth). Too bad you have to go down a monster-movie-esque alley to get there (the part of Bupyeong called “Creepyong”).

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Tomato Kimbap – This place has become my life. 24 hour access to chamchi jumongbap. Delicious. And OMG cheese ramen! Who would have thought that sticking an American cheese slice on top of a steaming pot of 23 cent spicy ramen would result in magic? Thick, cheesy, noodley, utterly amazing culinary magic.

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What else? Arts Center is also nice. There’s a place called Petite for Tea there that has does the cutesy frilly Euro cafe right.

Anyway, point is, Incheon ain’t so bad. It may be the Cleveland next to Seoul’s New York (paraphrasing Russell’s friend), but that doesn’t mean you gotta be a snob about it.

That being said, I’ve decided to leave my job at the end of June for… something. I had this crazy idea that I’d move to Hong Kong, but that’s all fantasy at this point… sorta.

Also: I visited Gyeongju last week.  Also the Nam June Paik Art Center in Yongin (Bundang? It’s near Ori Station on the Yellow Line, so I dunno) is pretty freakin’ awesome. I also went to a dog cafe called the Bau House, where 20 dogs ran freely (and peed freely, but were quickly cleaned up after by diligent waiters/doggie doo doo removers) and blah blah blah.

DJ Festival next to the Han River is in May! Busan maybe for my birthday! Other stuff.

My life is pretty alright right now, I have to be honest.

That’s all. Catch you later.

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