Tuesday, 18 November 2014

I miss Korea.

I got back from Korea a couple days ago and I hate it.  I miss Korea and I keep thinking about my next trip there.  Although I did tell myself next year...no more Korea. Don't know how long I can keep that promise to myself.  I need to go other place and enjoy other cultures. 

Anyway I was going to post some of the gorgeous photos of Korea, however most of the photos are in my friend's camera and I have yet to get it from them.  Still waiting....  Well I will write more once I get the photos.  Till then....aloha!

Friday, 7 November 2014

Aloha from Busan

I am finally back in Korea. This time I arrived in Busan first before going over to Seoul in a couple days. It has been 18 months since I was last in Korea. In fact it had been 18 since I've had a proper vacation. 

Busan is very different from Seoul. Where Seoul was the more sophisticated and elegant city, Busan I find it more down to earth and very different from Seoul. Although I had only a very small piece of Busan so far, I do know that in Busan, things are different.

We had a slight disagreement with a restaurant vendor who refused to serve us because we were a big party. Their excuse was that they had no table.  I could see that there were empty tables but yet they turned us down. Which was very weird. This is the first I had ever encountered such restaurant. Most restaurants would welcome us not refuse us. So we went to another restaurant which sells the same stuff as the other restaurant did. We enjoyed ourselves and the food there. Absolutly delicious. I love how they fried the pollack fish. Yum!

Right now my friends are taking a short nap to catch up on their sleep and I am contemplating if I should just go out and see the neighboring streets by myself. 

Well that is about it. I will write more about the Guesthouse and the other stuff later when I return back to Malaysia. Till then just a little snippets while I am on the road. Till next time byeeeeee. ....

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Smart Shopping in Korea....I hope.

Each time I go to Korea, I will buy massive amounts of cosmetics and bring it back to Malaysia.  While buying it, I tell myself that I will make myself use it, and not waste it by leaving it in there, in the box, till it expires.  (Apparently there is an expiration dates even on cosmetics.  Learn that the hard way.)  I told myself that I will take time out of my busy schedule to put the mask on or put on the moisturizer before I go to bed.  

I guess I can say that initially I did try.  But after a while I kinda got lazy and as time goes by, I stopped using the Laniege Water Sleeping Pack or the expensive Snail Mask or the tomato lotion that swears to lighten your skin for at least 24 hours.  The only things that I used were the Hello Kitty socks, the Laniege face cleanser and the BB cream.  A waste, I know. 

So this time around I plan to be smart about it.  I am not going to go crazy and listen to whatever the sales person tell me and buy all the cosmetics products they recommended.  I will shop smart.  Buy lots of face cleanser and BB cream. (Tried CC cream, it just does not suit my skin)  Also I need to buy a darker tint for my BB cream.  Each time I ask for the darker tint of BB cream, the sales person will be shocked.  Then they will tell me that the lighter tint will brighten my face.  Yeah....it brighten it all right.  My face looks fairer than my neck. So then I had to use BB cream on my neck to blend it in.  Argh!!  Each time I give in to the sales person and buy the lighter tint.  I am weak, I know.  No matter how much brightening or whitening cream, I am never going to be as fair as the Koreans.  And I am OK with it.  So this time around, I will remember to as for a slightly darker tint of BB cream.

The last time I was in Korea, Etude House in Myeongdong was have some kinda sale.  Almost everything in the all the Etude House was buy one free one.  It was only for the Etude House in Myeongdong.  Elsewhere like in Dongdaemun, didn't have the same deal.  As you can imagine I bought a lot.  This time around, I checked.  No sales at Etude House or any other Korean cosmetic brands.  I still have 13 days.  Hoping that when I get to Korea, there will be some kinda sales.  Fingers cross.

For those who are reading to research about the cosmetics in Korea, I do have some advise for you.  I can't advise you on what cosmetics to buy, coz even I don't know.  I just buy whatever my friends or the sales person recommends.  But I can help you save money. 

Do not buy Laniege Water Sleeping Pack or any Laniege products from the Laneige store in Myeongdong or where ever else you see it.  The best deal is to buy it at the duty free store.  I always go to the Lotte Departmental Store in Myeongdong.  On the 10th floor of the departmental store (I think its 10th.  Not too sure.  If not sure just ask around) is the Duty Free floors.  For the past 2 times I was in Korea, I bought my Laneige there.  It's cheaper than at the Laniege store in Myeongdong.  Both times my friends and I, bought 24 bottles to be shared among us.  Apparently if you buy 12 bottles or more, you will get an extra 5% off the price.  So we all got together and bought 24 bottles.  After calculations, each bottle was about RM48.  Very cheap, right?  Compared to the price of Laneige Water Sleeping Pack in Malaysia, which is about Rm100, I think.  However bare in mind that Rm was much higher last year compared to the rates now.  But even so, I still think it would be way less than RM100.

However the extra 5% is only for the Water Sleeping Pack, since it is their best seller.  However before going to Korea be sure to print out the 5-10% discount voucher to be used at the Lotte Duty Free.  I have to admit, I didn't even know about it till now.  So I plan to print a couple of the vouchers and use it there.  Last time I was there, they gave an extra 5% discount if I used my Visa card.  Not too sure if I could also use the 5% discount voucher on top of the 5% discount.  Would be great if it did.

While walking to Lotte Department Store, I checked out the Etude House if there were any sales.  They were having the Buy one get One free sale.  While the Etude House products were cheaper at the Lotte Duty Free on normal days, but with the sale, buying it at the Etude House store in Myeongdong was cheaper.  And I can also get a tax rebate at the airport for my purchases.  So the key is to look around first and then buy.  Don't just go buying it when you first see it.  Also if I am not mistaken, the Etude House stores give more samples than the Duty Free Store.  And in case you are wondering, Yes, I love Etude House.  Their product suits my skin and its cheap.

So the key is to look around a bit.  Even when you go to Dongdaemun and you see a cute tee that you just have to get.  There are so many other stall and also other shopping mall.  Take your time and see.  My friend, H bought this really cute top for 20,000 won.  She wore it the next day and really loved it.  So on our last night we went to Dongdaemun again coz she wants to get it another one.  We went to a different mall and saw the same exact top for only 10,000 won.  It really pissed her off.  So while when we are on vacation we are some times, a little pressed for time, but we can also try to relax a little.  

That is why H and I, love to go to Dongdaemun at midnight, since the place opens till 5am.  Which is totally awesome!  Instead of sleeping, we went shopping.  On our last night in Seoul, we went to Dongdaemun  and shopped till 3am.  Although I do feel bad sometimes when I have to wake the ahjumma up to ask for the price of the item.  But it was great coz when we got back to our hostel, we showered and and got ready to go to the airport to catch our flight back to Malaysia.  Since I didn't get any sleep the night before, I actually slept the whole time on the flight back to Malaysia.  Close my eyes when I was in Seoul, opened my eyes and I am back in Malaysia.  

The next things I am going to buy is socks!  I am going to buy a lot of socks from Korea.  Each time I go there I will buy lots of the cute Hello Kitty or any cute cartoon socks.  It's cheap and I love the prints.  There are 3 types of socks.  There are cheaper ones that are 500 won, which is about RM1.60.  Have random cute cartoons on it.  I have never bought them, so I am not sure about the quality.  The ones I bought were the 1,000 won. (RM3.20).  Quality is not bad but after a while the socks will loosen.  Last trip, I bought a few of the 1,500 won socks.(RM4.80)  Those socks are a little better quality and it last longer than the cheaper ones.  I guess you get what you paid for.  While I don't mind the 1,000 won socks, I think I will try to buy a few 1,500 won socks too.  I guess technically, I'm not telling you how to save money on buying socks but just giving ideas? 

OK, enough of my crazy ramblings.  Writing about Korea is making me more excited about the trip.  Can't wait to go away for a week and forget about work and just enjoy myself. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask in the comment section.  Till next time byeeeee....

Saturday, 25 October 2014

I am still ALIVE!!!

So much for my new year resolution of keep up my blogging.  Seriously I have no idea where all the time went coz one minute I was reminding myself that I need to write something on my blog, the next thing I know its 10 months later and I just suddenly thought of my blog.  How weird is that?

So perhaps I will try once again to write some of my random thoughts and random whatever in this blog.  My friend LN says a blog is a good place to keep my thoughts so after a while, I will read what I had written, and probably agree that I was a total ass. Well the ass part was my thought, but you get the gist.

The main reason I started to think about the blog was because I am going to go on my yearly trip to Korea soon.  In about 2 weeks time, in fact.  It's not supposed to be a yearly trip.  It was supposed to be yearly trip to anywhere but Korea...but I just couldn't do it.  I had to go back there again.  Korea is a place I find myself very comfortable with.  I don't know why.  Perhaps the people, the place or the food.  I just love it there.  Weird I know, but I can't help it.

I had decided if I do go back to Korea again next year, I will go on other trips too.  Not one grand trip a year and I spend the year waiting for the trip.  This time around we are going in the Fall coz I am determined to see the foliage.  Never seen it before and I wanna see it.  Experienced snow, summer and spring.  But not Fall.  So I do hope I get to catch the Fall foliage.  But with my rotten luck with the whole mother nature thing, I might end up looking at bare trees when I get there,  Foliage over and all I see bare trees and freaking cold. 

This time around I am going with a whole new group of friends.  LY and J is coming along, of course and 2 other new friends, MC and PC whom I had become friends with over the course of these few months.  I had traveled on short trips with LY and J. We were in KL for a long weekend, spend our time eating most of the time.  We got along great and they are great fun to hang out with.  They are very different from me and I think it is very good.  From LY I learn to be more organized.  Well can't say I had mastered it, but I am trying to be more organized.  

For the KL trip LY planned out the itinerary for each day.  While we didn't follow 100% of the itinerary, but it was always good to know what to expect next.  She would have the numbers of the place we wanted to go and operating hours of the the locations we were headed to.  It was amazing. While most of the time when I travel with H, we were fly by the seat of our pants kinda girls.  Always last minute changes and we just randomly plan out the itinerary. Both of us were not good planners.  

But for this trip to Korea, LY made an itinerary for every day of the week we are there.  She had the address, the operating hours and the entrance fees all calculated.  It was amazing.  There were excel sheets emailed back and forth between LY, J and I, with various alterations in the itinerary.  Yes I learn something. 

With J, she is like the treasurer of our group.  She normally handles the money aspect of any trip we go on.  Each time we go on our foodie outings, shes the one that keep tracks of the expenses.  Something that I am never good at.  I am learning so I try to keep track of all my expenses.  So far I am not succeeding coz I am bad at it.  But I do try.

MC and PC are my colleagues and they are way younger than LY, J and I.  I am pretty nervous about having all of them on this trip. I am not sure if they would get along with each other.  LY and J are more refined and more mature while PC and MC are so much younger and well....not so refined, shall we say.  But I am taking this as a learning experience and hopefully they do get along, especially for that 1 week. 

Well I think this post is long enough...and it is time for me to go to bed.  Hopefully I will have some time to come back and write more about the preparations for the trip.  My random erratic thoughts on the trip.  And perhaps some gorgeous foliage photos from Korea. 

Till next time. Byeeeeeeeee


Friday, 3 January 2014

Happy New Year!! Can't believe that its 2014.

First off, I would like to wish whoever that is reading this, a happy new year.  2013 has been a very tough year for me.  In Sept, I lost my father and while we were not close, he was my father.  I do miss him.  Sometimes I would do something that he had taught me or something he had lectured me endlessly about, I would hear his voice telling me over and over again. Reminding me what he had taught me.  While I am sad with my father's passing, I do think that he is in a better place.  And life goes on.

I finally got a job I really like.  I enjoy going to work and while it time consuming and sometimes is rather irritating, I do find it interesting.  Being a store manager of a large clothing store, was a little daunting at first.  I had to lead a group of people to do best. Sometimes, I feel like I am headmistress and all my staff are students.  Some a good and hardworking, and some lazy and trouble makers from the get go.

After 3 months working there, I had to terminate about half of the staff in the store leaving me with barely enough staff to run the store.  Even now, I have a tough time getting enough staffs to work.  Each day I get new challenges to different problems and I have had not encountered before.  While it does keep the job interesting, it also make me really weary with the job.  Ok, enough whining about the job.

In 2013, I have also lost friends.  No....they didn't die.  I lost their friendship.  My friend, H, whom I had known for more than 10 years did something that totally pissed me off.  While she knew I was angry, she didn't try to make it right.  Instead she made fun of me.  That pissed me off even more.  I stopped talking to her for quite some time.  Although we are in talking terms now, the friendship had changed.  We don't talk as often, and we have stopped sharing our thoughts and feeling.   Either way, the friendship we had is gone.  I don't think it will ever come back.

Another friendship was my friend L.  She was my brother's ex girlfriend,  While we were very different, I had always considered her as a good friend.  Soon after she got married and had a child.  After that she just stopped calling me.  Even when my dad passed away, she didn't call, nothing.  It was all of a sudden I don't exist.  Her world just revolves around her family and husband.  OK, you might think I did something wrong to make her angry at me.  But I didn't.  Our last conversation we had was trying to decide where to go for coffee. In the end we canceled coz she was busy.  I don't understand what happened but I really don't care anymore.  She is in the past and I will leave it there, in the past.

However the wonderful thing in 2014 is that I found two wonderful friends,  LN and J.  I had known LN since my university days but we never got close.  But then we started hanging out and before I knew it, we were friends.  J is LN's friend whom I had come to know and love.  They are wonderful girls and I enjoy hanging out with them.  So I have 2 new friends, which in my age, its rather tough to make new friends. Especially with my work and family obligations, who has time to go out and meet new people.

One of my new year resolution is to write in this blog whenever I have the time.  I had neglected this blog long enough and I will try to at least write something once a week. It was LY's idea to write and record my life as I live it.  I think its a good idea.  While I don't go or do anything exciting, I can at least leave my thoughts and feeling out there in the internet universe.  Nobody has to know but me....