Saturday, October 31, 2009


Halloween is celebrated a bit differently here in Korea. It's an American holiday...and almost NO Koreans celebrate it. Oh sure...some of the kids at the English academies celebrate it...but it is celebrated about as much as El Dia de los Muertos is celebrated in America.

Have you ever celebrated El Dia de los Muertos outside of Spanish class?


The costume selection is limited to what is found on a folding table at the local department store...

I was able to pick up some fangs and scare my students on our Halloween theme day.

Face paint is for sale...but its for sale year round at the stationary stores that are located on every block.

So instead of having a wild party in Itaewon (the armpit/foreign district of Seoul)... I chose to go on a cruise. The Cheonju dam that I found so unimpressive 6 months ago creates a long and lovely lake. The changing Autumn leaves makes for some beautiful scenery. But since it was Halloween...I also chose to wear some face paint.

While I don't blame the high school students for being a little scared here...I mean...if you were hanging out in the pre-dawn hours and you saw someone skeleton face paint on ANY OTHER time of might jump too...

(Oh...and I still think I make a more compelling Ghost Rider than Nichols us Cage does...but the picture is above so you can judge for yourself)

The cruise was relaxing...most of the foreigners stayed on the roof of the ferry admiring the view in what can only be described at typical Seattle weather (cloudy with a chance of rain). While on the first floor of the ferry, the ajimas and ajashis (old Korean Men and Women) danced their hearts out to the latest and greatest Korean pop songs.

After a hours the ferry returned to the dock and we went to a cave and a natural stone arch and returned back so Seoul.

Once we friends convinced me to stick around and enjoy Halloween with them in Seoul (as opposed to the outskirts where I live and which are my typical stomping grounds)

We started at a little place called "Ho Bar 3." and isn't what it sounds like...just as Dick's Drive It serves Hamburgers and Fries...a Ho Bar serves Budweiser and Guinness...the best part about the bar was the group of what had to be high school exchange students taking advantage of the lax enforcement of drinking age...

Clue number one that they were in high school...well they all looked 16

Clue number two....the boys were ordering shots of Baileys for themselves...

Eventually we moved into a more chill location...where we enjoyed the flavors of strawberry and kiwi smoke while we contemplated the questions "Who are you?" and "So you think you've changed, do you?" while giving out such advice as "Explain yourself." and "Keep your temper." and "One side will make you grow taller, and the other side will make you grow shorter."

Because being 3 inches tall is such a wretched height to be....

1 comment:

  1. Though I haven't been in Korea long enough to experience Halloween, I'd like to point out that your comparison to Dia de los Muertos is not a very good one. It's pretty widely celebrated throughout Texas (as far north as Dallas), and as I understand it, many southern states, too. The supermarkets and walmarts all carry candy skulls and many clubs do something special that day. I had the opportunity to attend one in downtown Fort Worth that painted skulls on every attendee's face for free last year.