I miss Korea.

Aka. Mini-review: My Ex and Whys

1. I’ve been trying to hold off watching this movie because – sorry to his fans – I’ve always been annoyed at Enrique Gil’s acting. :shutup: However, I am GLAD that I finally saw it. Both Enrique and Liza’s acting skills have leveled up so much that I did not get annoyed at all. When did they become this good?

2. Liza’s role is a derivative of another female character that I will not name. Only less annoying and actually likeable.

3. Two words: RYAN. BANG. :clap:

4. The story is simple but the screenplay is engrossing and nicely paced. I have seen quite a number of local movies that center around social media but for me, it was best utilized in this movie. It didn’t feel forced or out-of-place. The main plot revolve around how social media affects real-life relationships, after all.

5. The main reason why I’m blogging about this movie: KOREA.

Watching My Ex And Whys made me realize how much I missed visiting that country. :cry: The last time I was there was in 2014, and it’s been too long since. All the memories came rushing back. Strolling around Dongdaemun, eating street food in Myeongdong after a looooong day of walking (I can relate to that scene so much that I nearly cried watching it), the traditional houses in Jongno, and of course. NAMI ISLAND!

Cali (Liza Soberano)’s reaction upon seeing the row of ginko trees at Nami was very familiar, because that was exactly my reaction when I first saw it way back in 2006. Except I was much, much, much less pretty, of course. :hihihi: I find it a bit funny that they were sad that the leaves have fallen off because there are several other rows that still has leaves, as shown in the scenes just before this one when they were running around the island looking for Ryan Bang’s fiancee. But who needs to know that, right? hehe

If only for the nostalgia factor, I really enjoyed watching this movie.

PS: Nice cameo by Sandara Park. Not random and forcing through, at all. :thumbup:

(Image credits: Star Cinema)

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Jjimjilbang.

I had a lot of laughs watching this video of Conan O’Brien and The Walking Dead‘s Steven Yeun having their first Korean spa experience, so I thought I’d share it here:

This video reminded me that I haven’t blogged about one of the highlights of my latest trip to Korea: my own first experience with the jjimjilbang.

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I have never tried going full monty in the company of other people, much more total strangers, so I could totally relate to Conan’s reaction regarding having to go naked in front of other people. :hihihi: At first, we tried our best to “delay” the process by keeping our undies and towels on; but then, at some point, we had no choice but to let it go, so to speak. And that’s when we realized that, it’s totally OK because NOBODY CARES. Everyone else is naked, so who cares if we are, too? It actually attracts more attention to yourself if you’re in a public bath and your body is covered.

We didn’t experience having our body scrubbed, though. The spa that we went to offers full body massage for three hours – yep, you read that right – but it’s very VERY expensive. We’re fine with just the sauna and bath and having to take a nap wearing Princess Leia towels on our heads.

And speaking of the sauna, the spa’s main attraction according to Sookyoung 이모 is this oven-like thing:

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이모 went in first, followed by Charity and then me… and then Charity and I promptly went out as soon as we got in. It’s not oven-like, it IS an oven. :stretcher: When the hot air blew on my face I literally lost my breath and I felt like collapsing. So we transferred to the other oven which is a lot cooler: 42 degrees C, to be exact. Which is totally fine, because that’s the temperature in the Philippines for the most part of the year. I could lodge some pine tree branches on my window this summer and have a Korean jjimjilbang session every night.

So how was the experience, you may ask? Aside from being a relaxing experience after days of walking around Seoul, it was… liberating. It’s definitely the ultimate bonding experience if you’re doing it with a group of friends like we did. I’m just not sure if I’d be willing to do it again, but at least that’s one activity native to Korea that I can cross out on my bucket list.

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Chaos at Cheonggyecheon.

Also known as: our misadventures at the 2014 Seoul Lantern Festival.

If there is one advise I could give to future visitors of the annual Seoul Lantern Festival at Cheonggyecheon Stream, it’s this: never go on a shopping spree, and then visit the festival. Unless you have a place to leave your things, that is.
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