Tuesday, February 07, 2017

30 Years of MMCA

To celebrate the 30th 'birthday' of the MMCA (Museum for Modern and Contemporary Art), the museum decided to hold a special exhibition called As the Moon Waxes and Wanes. The exhibition displays not only its 30 years old history but also commemorates the works of various featured artists. Just like in the way the moon waxes and wanes, the artworks portray the change in society in relation to our culture through time.

Since the relocation of the museum from Seoul to Gwacheon, you have to get off the Seoul Grand Park station then take the shuttle bus to the museum. The MMCA is located on a hill, sporting a magnificent view over mountains, a lake and the nearby animal park as well as Seoul Land (an amusement park).

I didn't incorporate any 'detailed' artworks since it would somehow feel unfair to upload them here. Honestly, I must admit that I couldn't understand most of the artworks, some gave out a weird vibe, but the trip was still worth it - you can always see and learn something new and unexpected. The exhibit is open till the 12th of February, so if you happen to be near, go pay a visit - there are many things to see and do in the area not only the museum (admission was free by the way!).

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

4N5D at the Countryside in Korea

This whole weekend was packed full of happenings and events.

On Thursday, my mom and I took the bus to the countryside to visit my paternal grandmother. It's custom to pay a visit to your paternal grandparents for Lunar New Year's Day here in Korea. After driving for around 4 hours (with a 15 minute break in between when you can go to the toilet or buy something to eat at the rest stop) we've finally arrived in Damyang (that's the city's name). Part of my relatives had already arrived, so we greeted each other heartily first since it's been a while we've seen one another. For the rest of the day, we've stayed mostly at home, reposing and taking a nap.

The following day, it began to get busy. We've had to prepare for New Year's Day which would be on Saturday, so there was a lot to do before that. Let me explain: In Korea, New Year's Day isn't celebrated the way it is in the Western world. No, wait, let me correct it. Of course there are fireworks and such, but that's only the case for New Year's Eve which is - like you all know- on January 1st. However, according to the moon calendar (yielding a more significant role in some parts of the Eastern world), New Year's Day is also considered a day to honor your ancestors. Hence, the family has to set up a table full of offerings. Don't worry, it's not like we slaughter animals for this. The offerings consist mostly of fruits, rice (cakes), side dishes, hot pancakes made of vegetables or meat and soju (an alcoholic beverage). It differs from household to household what and how you put it on your table. Either way, we were busy to prepare the food for almost the whole day. Usually it's the women's job to make it, but that's fine by me because my younger cousin and I got to 'test-taste'. Almost forgot to mention it but the second part of my relatives arrived that day, wherefore the house felt really crowded.

At last, the first day of the new year started. We all woke up pretty early and before we began to eat breakfast, my family took turns to honor our ancestors. Normally we go in the hierarchic order. That's to say that my father and my brother would have been the first ones (because my father is the first son and my brother the first son of the first son) but since they weren't there, my uncles were the first ones to bow down in front of the table with the offerings. Another thing I've neglected to say was that we've prepared 13 bowls of rice cake soup. Why? Well, to honor the 13 generations before us - truly awesome right? Eventually it was my turn to bow down 2 1/2 times (don't ask why it has to be 2 1/2 times, I don't know either). Afterwards, we began to eat 'breakfast' which can be translated to 'We ate the offerings'. I'm not the type to eat much - not to mention rice - in the morning (cereals and bread for the go!) but due to the fact that the consumption of the offerings are a part of the ritual, I had no choice but to eat some (it was tasty though). My cousins and I also received good-luck-money. In the afternoon, we drove to the gravesite of my ancestors and my grandpa and did the same ritual.

Sunday was spent mostly individually. Some of my relatives visited their other relatives who live in the same city, some relaxed and I explored the environment. For example, I went inside the bamboo forest which is famous for being the background for some movies, walked alongside the river and paid a visit to 'Petite Provence' (it's like the French version of Chinatown). All in all, it was a fun day and we all went to dinner together.

The last day was spent bundling up our stuff and then it was time to say goodbye. This time, I wasn't as sad as the previous times because we would see each other again in March to celebrate the 80th birthday of my grandma.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

A Package Arrival from the Far Far West

Guess what I found in our post office box the other day! A package from my lovely friend in Germany..! She's the only one out of my friends with whom I exchange letters or packages with - good old ancient times style (okay that's a bit outré). In december last year (still can't believe I have to say last year for 2016), I've already sent her a package with some Korean snacks and other hodgepodge since it was her birthday and christmas and all those festive days coming. Given that I can't wait any longer, let's open the package together!

Sorry guys but I just cannot promulgate my address yet - haha..

Heart beating really fast at this moment...drum roll please..

...and ta-da! Wow, I've actually expected there to be less, so I'm really surprised right now. Let's see - there's a handwritten letter (which I always like the best), a Yankee Candle (they smell so good; and how did she know that I'm into rose fragrances lately), some mask packs (can you see that she attached heart-shaped memos to each gift?), a fruit slice (I'll eat it the next time in art class since my stomach grumbles each time I sit there), a to be nuked mug cake (my grandma doesn't possess a microwave here in Korea though..guess I have to preserve it unitl I'm back) and last but not least some Russian sweets (side info: my friend is originally from Russia).
I haven't told my friend yet that her package has arrived, so I'll have her find out by letting her read this blog post (by the way, she was the one who suggested that I write again). So when you're reading this my dear friend:

Thank you tons and I'm really, sincerely, candidly happy from the bottom of my heart!

So it's been a while...

Hi to all the people out there!

Even while writing these lines, I'm still ruminating about what kind of excuses I should tell to justify my long (way to long) absence. Of course I could say that in the time I was 'offline', I've graduated from high school, changed houses, flew over to Korea, began to take classes in an art academy to fulfill my dream of getting into an art school, also began to take dance lessons thrice a week and nevermind to mention that I'm already 19 now. But in the end, it all results to me neglecting this blog which I cared (and still care) about a lot. At this point I have to apologize to my blog I guess.
Sorry blog.
So why now did I decide to start over again? Well - I did always think about restarting my blog posts, but somehow I ended up not to (I'm sure the majority out there can sympathize with me; maybe except those rare kind of people who have an iron will and are overly ambitious). My friend- who has also started a blog with a bit of my help (if I'm allowed to praise myself a little) told me the other day that I should start posting again. That's it. Simple, right? But sometimes all a person needs to pick oneself up again is just someone who tells you that you're sort of needed.

I'm going to start afresh, probably opening up a new category (in which I write about my recent and honest thoughts like in a diary) and I'll try to come up with diverse content for you. Oh, and not to forget to mention that my writing style has maybe changed a bit.

I'm really happy while writing these words, it makes me feel like I'm back home again - it's a delectable feeling.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Scents made for Spring

It has been waaay to long since I've last posted an blogpost! I was so busy with school (final written exams are done - only the oral exams remain, yippieh!), therefore, I want to apologize first of all!

So, now that we've clarified this, I'll begin with the actual topic: It's all about scents (perfumes) just made for spring! You know that everyone crazes about viewing cherry blossoms (Insta!) and wearing skirts again (well, at least in other countries, it's freezing here - brrr). I think that spring carries a special sentiment. You're automatically happier and you want to spend time outside.

Perfumes or scents in general are a good way to emphasize this "springy" feeling and to get into the mood:

The one for in between: DEMETER - CHERRY BLOSSOM (ROLL ON OIL)
This little friend of mine is easy to carry with and convient. There are times when you don't want to spray a full load of perfume around you and annoy everyone else. It just smells (as the name indicates) like cherry blossoms and fits perfectly for spring. Even so, the scent will eventually fly away after a few hours, so be sure to reapply it again if you want to.

The daily one: CLEAN - BLOSSOM
This one is new: They've launched it not too long ago and I have to admit that I was at first a bit allured to buy it (my favorite K-pop group advertises for this company [BTS - 방탄소년당]). Either way, the smell is just a.m.a.z.i.n.g. It's my most favorite scent right now and I think that I'm becoming addicted to it. It smells flowery and fruity at the same time and you're not overwhelmed by it. I reaaally recommend it!

The one in the evening: VALENTINO - VALENTINA
This eau de perfume is heavier than the others. It smells lighter at first, but gets "deeper" as time flies by (don't know if you can understand what I mean), so I think that it's more a scent for the evening. Other than this, it smells flowery, too, with a hint of musk.

To wrap it up, I hope you've liked today's post (after my long absence) and be sure to come take a look again next time! (PS: Next post is going to be a small DIY!)