Today marks a few firsts in my Seoul experience:
- 1st trip to Dongdaemun Market
- 1st time buying ground coffee
- 1st time eating pizza
Here are the recaps for each:
Everything I'd read indicated that this was The Place to go for insane, 24/7 shopping. Maybe I went to the wrong section (the market is 10 blocks of shops and malls, thousands of vendors), but things were pretty much shut down by the time I arrived at 5pm. Something isn't adding up. Will definitely do more research on where exactly to enter the shopping arena.
I knew this day would come, and I can't say I wasn't warned. I finally ran out of the ground coffee I brought from home, and it was time for a replacement. After pricing merchandise at several places (local coffee chains and grocery stores; The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf), I broke down and went to Starbucks. Fifteen dollars (15,000 won) for a HALF pound bag. Crazy. What's crazier though is me without coffee, so that was the rationale I used as I handed over the money.
Those who know me, know I'm not really a pizza fiend, so it's not all that surprising I only just now got around to having a slice. That said, I am a foodie, so if I'm going to break down and eat Western food when living in Asia, it'd better be good. I skipped the American chains and went instead for a more authentic experience: Di Matteo's in Hyehwa. You may remember I passed by that restaurant two weeks ago, and it's been on my mind ever since. I am so glad I returned and actually ate something this time; it was fantastic. I started with one slice, then splurged for another. Delicious.
Side note: why is it that at age 34 I still haven't learned some basic lessons, e.g if food is hot in your hands, it'll likely burn your mouth? Not sure if it was the excitement of being back at Di Matteo's or the comforting aroma of the pizza in my grasp, but I refrained from waiting and burned the roof of my mouth badly. As if holding out an extra 20 seconds would've killed me...lesson finally learned, perhaps.