Monday, July 09, 2012

Duck, Duck ... Duck!

It's been a tough couple of weeks.

I'm homesick for my family and friends, and I've been having moments of feeling very out of place and awkward here. I don't know why-- is it Korea? Is it work? Is it me?-- but the random pauses of loneliness are surprising and not at all welcome.

Then-- BOOM! Things are as they should be. I am my normal smiley, happy self again.

Is this what senility feels like??

Anyways. Onward with my food posts!

A few weeks ago, two of the girls and I went to Anygol (애니골), an area in Ilsan that's a little bit slower paced and a little more spread out than the bigger shopping and eating areas. There's one street (alley?) that consists of faux traditional Korean buildings that house duck restaurants.

Korea has a lot of streets like this, that are themed- wedding shops, shoe shops, musical instrument shops, and everything in between- Koreans like to group all like things together. Makes it easier to bargain shop, I suppose?
Being a lovely summer afternoon, we decided to have a leisurely dinner at one of the duck restaurants, which is quite famous, if I'm not mistaken, called Canaan Duck (가나안덕). Because eating duck is ... a religious experience...? Whatever the story behind the name of the place, we had a good time and a lot of duck.
Duck! I've never seen duck served like this in LA. I feel like perhaps this is a Korean thing- raw duck, chop it up, throw it on a grill, cook the crap out of it.

There were three of us and one duck was plenty. These aren't huge ducks, but the skin is very fatty and what with all the sides, we didn't need to order more fowl.
I don't drink beer because I think it tastes gross, but I loved this beer glass. It's a diagram of how much soju and how much beer to pour into the glass, and what the percentage of alcohol is for each of the different measurements. And yes, this is a typical beer glass in Korea- they also have those big stein-sized glass mugs, but usually at fried chicken places and hofs, not at restaurants.
We all had on baseball caps because no one bothered to put on makeup. I'm turning so Korean, aren't I, concerned about makeup and such?? We didn't really eat or drink much this day-- I think it's because this was when it was just starting to get hot here, and the humidity really puts a damper on any desire to eat or drink until stuffed.
Aw, look at the happy, makeup-less Korean girls. This was actually taken while we were waiting for a table to open up, as the duck restaurants in this area have a very brisk business. Tons of people were loitering around- see the little arcade behind us? Kids were running around and playing on see-saws and other swings, adults were sitting around panting in the heat, and we were acting like idiots and taking photos of everything.

I drove for the first time in Korea yesterday!

We (the three girls in the photo above) went to watch a movie (YeonGaSi, 연가시) last night, so I took one of the company cars from one of the guys, who happened to be in the same shopping area as I was yesterday afternoon. We met for coffee and I took the car and the girls and off we went.

Driving in Ilsan isn't nearly as daunting as driving in Seoul, I would think. If (when?) I know my plans and I decide to stay in Korea for a year or more, I would seriously consider buying a car. Too bad I have no idea where I'll be in six months!