Gwangju: It’s getting hot

I like to think that’s because of me, but given my truly German beer belly and my overall statue, I highly doubt that. Unless we’re talking thermal dynamics and gravitational heat or something  but physics are for nerds and I’m here to have fun so whatever!

(Those of you who are just here for food pictures might as well scroll down to the end of this post.)

The past few days I haven’t really been keeping up with blogging so much and that has mainly to do with my girlfriend wanting to study in Germany and Germany over complifying every single possible thing. Hence I spent my time figuring out things and going out with friends to relax. Of course I still saw some things and today I want to tell you about some of them.

First of all, one of my biggest fears has come true: Korean Summer is approaching rapidly. For those of you who don’t know: I am really not a fan of heat above 15° C and summers in Asia are pretty terrifying to me. I have no idea why I keep ending up around here in exactly this season but I seem to be trapped in an Asian Summer limbo. Of course I will try and make the best out of that situation and make my way from AC to AC.

On Saturday, my girlfriend, her mother and I went to some flower mountain nearby. These days, there’s red, purple and white flowers blooming everywhere on the sides of the mountains and it looks absolutely stunning. In a few weeks it’s supposed to look even more nice though so we’ll head there again!

The flower mountain! It looked really nice. The name of this place is Man-yeonsan and I recommend visiting this place if you ever happen to be around the Gwangju area in spring.
All of those mountains have names. They didn’t tell me their names though so I could only guess and upset them. I don’t want that so I’ll go with “mountain”. This specimen had a bridge and an observational platform on top of it, which I’d love to visit.
More flowers. Actually, there’s even more of them just outside the picture!
This is a temple we visited right after the flower mountain. It was really calm and peaceful. It is conveniently named after the mountain it resides on and goes by ‘Man-yeonsa’. There’s just an ‘n’ missing at the end. I’m not sure if that’s a typo or not but if it is they’ve been going with it for quite some time.
Another shot of the temple. I really liked the sun there!
This is a lake next to the Man-yeonsa temple. It was full of tadpoles, which my girlfriend apparently thinks are super disgusting. I loved it though so the lake got that going for itself. Don’t worry lake.

After that little trip, I was invited to eat duck with my girlfriend’s family. There I met her cousin and her cousin’s mother. It was fantastic! First the Sashimi and then this, I can’t even describe how much I love Korean food! If I could, I’d totally spend more time here. Instead of boring you ot death with my anecdotes, I’ll just go ahead and post pictures. I think they’re perfect lazyness enablers so I don’t have to write so much. Be warned though, you should read the description, as the pictures are in random order – thanks Obama – and didn’t want to cooperate sorting them. There’s pictures unrelated to the family dinner but I’ll explain which is what! 🙂

This is called Ddeokkbokki. It’s a spicy Korean dish, that you can get at just about every street corner. It tastes different everywhere and some are amazing while some, especially the sweeter versions, aren’t really my cup of tea. This one was fantastic though! From top left to bottom right: Fried pork cutlets, pork innerts (mainly liver and kidney), Ddeokbokki, Tempura.
Here’s the raw duck from the family dinner. It was fried on a stone grill directly at the table and a fantastic experience! I’m really thankful for the invitation. The Korean and Japanese way of eating slowly with lots of different dishes and alcohol is something I could really get used to. It’s just too much fun.
This was also at the family dinner: Fried rice with egg. It was served on the same stone as the duck, after it was eaten. It was really good, especially with the Korean side-dishes (Banchan)
Here you can see the aftermath of the dinner and all the side-dishes (Banchan). There really was a lot of food and most of the Banchan usually come with free refills. Just make sure you’re flexible when you eat a meal like this or Shabu-Shabu, as you usually have to sit on the ground. My legs died a bit that day but that’s a trade I’m willing to make!
My desert was fish-shaped ice-cream with red bean and vanilla flawor. It was also really good and reminded me a bit of Japan. I really missed that red bean flavor.
 A salmon salad that served as a snack in a beer-bar in Gwangju.
This was my lunch today. Happy-hour at the Shabu-Shabu restaurant! It was really good and amazingly cheap. I think together we paid about 15 € for the whole table – about 7,50 € per person.
Jjamppong – a kind of spicy Korean noodle soup. Our dinner today also really good. I think I have to stop saying that Korean food is good because I’m repeating myself. Imagine spicy ramen with spaghetti-esque noodles instead of ramen-noodles.
Another kind of jjamppong. Try to pronounce that, will you!

That’s it for today folks! I hope you have a great time and stay alive until I post the next update to my blog!

Xoxo Robin

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