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13 December 2017 @ 12:04 am
韩国一游. eating, shopping, snow and zombies in south korea  
just some notes on my very superficial thoughts about south korea:

- things seem so much cheaper in korea... random hats, touchscreen-enabled gloves, warm-lining pants and furry pajamas... of course, not to mention the beauty products, many of which i found out only belatedly that they don't seem available in hong kong or singapore; it was also a surprise to me that their masks come in like humongous packs of 20/30/60. should really have brought so much less and bought so much more!

- tried this briskin deep moisture mask (costs 5,000 won or s$6.20 each normally but bought it in olive young at a discounted price of 3,500 won or s$4.40; i suspect they do such offers regularly to increase reach for unknown brands cos there are just too many out there to try!). i was actually quite tentative about it cos the packaging was pastel pink (which usually suggests rose-scented or filled with vitamin e, which i'm allergic to) ... but it turned out to be really fantastic! somehow my face felt really smooth and moisturised for two full days after the 20-minute mask that night; never has a mask had such long-lasting effect on me before, so i'm still kinda wondering if it might have been a fluke after all. but i did find one recent glowing review for the mask, which seems really obscure or must be quite new to the market cos there's very little else about it online. when i visited olive young's airport branch in the hopes of getting some to bring home last minute, it was sold out of the one i used! :((( only had the others (soothing, firming, anti-aging...), so i just bought one each of the others anyway, heh. well, you know i hardly, if ever, find myself compelled to rave about any beauty product, so you should know that i really liked its results!

- the fruits in korea are amazing, which, again, is new to me. i feel so damn suaku. the strawberries we picked up from any random stall (we tried only three boxes from three different places, sadly) never failed to be juicy and sweet. actually i've never been a real fan of strawberries because my experience with them in sg/hk has always been "more prone to be sour than sweet". and in hk, in fact i will often shell out a good bit of cash for strawberries at supermarkets only to go home and immediately open it up to find the bottom layer coated with mould, and have to throw the entire box out for fear of killing my stomach. the persimmons, which seemed to be growing everywhere on trees in korea, were also always just-ripe and soft and sweet and juicy and fleshy... none of that unripe powdery/furry sensation you get on your tongue when you try a not-quite-ready-for-consumption one. my mum also randomly picked up a grapefruit ... and even that turned out to be sweet!!! actually, i don't think i've ever tasted a sweet grapefruit before this! i thought the key characteristic for a grapefruit was its sourness and that a sweet grapefruit is actually a pomelo. its bananas taste pretty normal though; clearly not made in korea, lol. (haha, yes, i do know they can't grow bananas there!)

- don't think i'm a big fan of korean food, though. i mean, i do actually eat it quite regularly (probably not-so-authentic versions of it) and am quite fond of some things, like the spam in noodles, japchae, zhajiangmian, tastier versions of the bibimbap, fried chicken, etc ... but they do seem to have overly disproportionate amount of spicy food, so annoying. speaking of fried chicken, however... this also seems to be the same as our strawberry experience... you anyhow go wherever to buy fried chicken, the chicken will also come out tasting fantastic. so strange. this reminds me of the time when i had a visitor in hk who remarked that in hk, you anyhow walk into a diner and the food will also turn out great ... to which, i responded that i did know several horrible food places and asked if she'd like me to bring her there to try. she wisely declined, haha. (by the way, i also had a major bout of food poisoning in seoul, which crippled me for an entire day and two nights, which i spent shuttling between bed and the toilet to puke and diarrhoea, often one immediately after the other. nightmare.)

- i think the temperature dipped to as low as -9 degrees celsius while we were there, but most days hovered around -4 to -1 degrees. it snowed several times, of course. but it actually felt much less cold than i expected it to be ... i mean, everyone warned me about how bitter and biting cold it would be, so i was actually a bit worried and brought all my thickest, warmest clothes there. end up, very hot, kept having to remove clothes so my bag kept becoming fatter and heavier (i guess this is still better than freezing to death). i guess i forget how far technology has come since, with all the heat tech and thermal sportswear, etc. my first memory of cold and snow is still stuck in new zealand at kindergarten age, when we trudged around the country and flew up to the peak of a snowy mountain (mount cook?) via a small jet in our sneakers (not even reebok) and sweatpants over thick, heavy beige cotton(??) thermals.

- okay, that's it for now. turned out longer than i planned to write, as usual. will add more later if anything else comes to mind. feels like i should post photos alongside this entry ... but i'm still stuck in the early-2000s journalling (not "blogging"!) era, when people were neither expected to post pictures nor promote their own posts with seo keywords, etc. so i will continue not doing so, being lazy and all, unless the mood strikes me at some point, heh.