Monday, November 2, 2009

A Study in Contrasts

I've just returned from an evening that could best be summed up as a glimpse into heaven. After church (which itself was unusually heartening today), I went to dinner with a group of 20 young adults. We dined at a Nepalese restaurant called Everest and enjoyed a delicious meal set against a charming, colorful backdrop. I had the mutton masala with garlic nan...yum. If you come to visit, I'll include Everest on our itinerary. How I wish I'd been able to take photos! (My camera was broken last night, and I'm feeling lost without it. Fixing/replacing it is HIGH on my to-do list.) In any case, here's a link so you can check it out for yourself:

From Everest, the group headed to the Hyehwa area for the evening's main event:  a performance by a renowned Korean gospel choir. There we were, a motley crew of black, white, and Asian believers, packed into the church. We clapped, danced, and sang along in English while the choir belted out (in Korean) modern praise standards, including:  How Great Is Our God, Blessed Be Your Name, Forever, Open the Eyes of My Heart, and In Christ Alone. Close your eyes, and you'd have sworn you were in the Deep South. They were amazing, and even now I get chills thinking about all of it. 

The Hyehwa area is artsy and interesting. I cannot wait to return, particularly because I saw an Italian pizza parlor that was absolutely darling. I went inside to grab a business card and was delighted to see two chefs (owners?) who were native Italians. Will definitely be back soon... the heavenly aroma of Neopolitan pizza still lingers.

Contrast all of these experiences with last night. I don't mean to put a damper on anyone else's revelry, but I attended a Halloween party in Yeoksam and came home feeling empty and depressed. Sure, I can focus on the positives and give the impression that I'm having fun. And truthfully, I did enjoy moments during the evening -I met some friendly people who seemed intelligent and genuine, and the area had plenty of interesting design elements to admire. However, amid all the risque and silly costumes, there was no real joy to be found there. I won't elaborate because many of you know what I mean. As I re-prioritize goals, it's hard not to think of it as an imprudent use of time and talents.

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