The Jeju Journey

Last night, Yuandi and I had a blast befriending the 13 gorgeous female bartenders of Moon Bar. Over drinks and cute Korean snacks, we shared stories from our respective hometowns. Despite the language barrier, I really enjoyed my company. My favorite was one girl, who had porcelain skin, a super sassy personality, and a jolly belly laugh. We got along super well, and one of my missions is to find her a cute boy from San Francisco who can outdrink her. Difficult task!

Today was so great. We decided to kickstart our morning by heading to see Arirang Party, Legend of Jeju Show. There’s nothing like a triple whammy of half-naked buff black belts beating each other up, beautiful traditional dance, and epic breakdancing for an early morning adrenaline rush. Definitely kick started my day.

We went for a completely different mood by visiting the beautiful Songak Mountain. I made my way down the black volcanic sand beach and ran into the crashing waves. Poor Yuandi was caught off guard by a rogue wave, and her red leather shoes were drenched. I wandered off to explore the cave where a signature scene from Dae Jang Geum was shot. Bad choice of footwear, since I almost slipped and died on my way down.

We decided to go with our new Korean friend we met in my hotel lobby to another mountain, where we visited an old Dutch ship, drooled over adorable Korean children frolicking on the beach, and drank real mountain water from a nearby famous temple. We also made a wish by sticking rocks in the cracks a large tower-like culture symbol. I pray and pray that it will come true.

Having a Korean-speaking friend is life-changing. We celebrated our new friendship with honeydew Melona bars and Jeju’s iconic banana milk. Since he’s an avid soccer fan, we somehow made it to the Jeju World Cup Stadium from the 2002 games hosted in Korea. We snuck in, and for some reason I had a flashback of walking on the field of Memorial Stadium before working game concessions, slipping under the radar with my apron and my attempt to look important.

After a quick perusal of the wax museum, I begged him to lead us to Teddy Bear Museum. My wish was granted, and I was the happiest girl in the world. I was in teddy bear heaven, and mind blown by the sheer creativity and cuteness emanating from every corner. Emerging with 4738595764 pics and a bag of teddy souvenirs, I was quite the happy camper. Teddy Bear Tesseum was definitely my favorite Jeju experience so far.

To top off our wonderfully packed day, our new friend took us to Olive 9, one of Jeju’s most popular buffet restaurants. We stuffed our faces literally til we dropped.

Happy, stuffed, and content. That’s how life can be like every day.

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