Friday, August 03, 2007

japan trip

I think every time I've traveled a fars way, it's been by plane or car. So this made my last trip to japan a little more interesting.

I set out with my buddy Chris, and we took a bus out to the KTX station. It is a super high speed bullet train, that can pretty much cross Korea in 3hrs. At one point we were traveling about 310km/hr. It was a really comfortable and smooth ride, with lots of nice scenery along the way.

The train took us too Busan, which is the biggest port city in korea. It's really nice there, and the weather was a lot nicer considering it's so much further south. More on Busan later.

From Busan, we took a hydrofoil boat known as a beetle to Fukuoka, Japan. The thing was really cool to look at, I'd never seen anything like it. On top of that, the thing really flew and had beer at duty free prices. :)

Total travel time was about 8hrs I think, and costed $250 for the roundtrip.

I've only been to Japan one other time, and that was in Osaka. I guess I was a little surprised at how nice the weather was. Palm trees everywhere, and apparently a pretty sweet beach that we didn't get a chance to check out. The city was really similar to Osaka, but just a little more chill. We walked around for a while, trying to find a hotel a buddy recommended with no luck. One thing about Japan compared to Korea is the amount of English spoken. In Korea, soooo many people speak English, but Japan is truly a different story. Most people we met had like ZERO english. I guess it didn't help that we had been drinking for the past 8hrs. :)

So whatever, we found a hotel for the night, dropped our bags and hit up a popular bar called sam 'n daves or something.

While trying to find our hotel, we bumped into this plump white girl who was also from Korea on a visa run. She tagged along to the bar, which ended up being PACKED:

So yeah, we just had a drink, ordered up some awesome chicken wings, paid, and then ditched the white girl because we're jerks like that. lol

So we hit the streets trying to find something to do. Nothing really seemed to be happening, and if it was, we couldn't find it. My friend was exhausted and went home, but I stayed out until about 4m just wandering around and meeting random people. I ended up getting completely lost. But I met this really nice girl who spoke no English, and she walked me the 30mins it took to get back. :)

The next morning we got up at about 11am with a plan in mind. My buddy wanted to get some more ink done, and I was considering getting another tattoo too. I wasn't sure, but figured if I got inspired I would do it up. So after a few hours of searching and grabbing brunch, we find a place that was recommended to us and head in.

We end up staying there until about 6pm when Chris' tat is done. During that time I had looked through about 40 tattoo magazines and came up with a theme and some ideas. I left the artist with the idea, and said we would come back tomorrow to see what he came up with.

We then hit up a bar where we knew the owner through a friend in Korea. It was like a punk rock club, and was very cool. Drinks weren't a bad price, and we got treated really well. We drank alot, yadda yadda yadda, and made our way back to our hotel.

The next day was exactly the same as the last, except with me getting tatted instead of Chris.

Took about 5hrs, but it turned out pretty sick.

We ended up at the same club that ngiht because it was close to our hotel, and they had a 2for1 drink special. More yadda, yadda, yadda-ing, and we call it a night really late. oh and I bumped into this guy on the way home:

Our boat back to busan left in the morning at 7:30am, and we woke up at 10am. So much for a wake up call.

So obviously we sleep for another hour, and then head to the boat station.

It ended up not even being a big hassle. We got our time changed, grabbed some food and didn't even have to pay a fee. AND we only had to wait an hour. So by about 5pm, we're through customs safely and back in Korea. I text my girlfriend to let her know I'm in busan and should be home in about 5hours. This was easily the biggest mistake of my trip.

So yeah, like I said earlier, Busan is a port town. This means there are tonnes of foreigners kickin around from all over the world. It was pretty dirty, and dangerous from what some people have said. My girlfriend told me there are tonnes of gangsters there and whatnot. Also, there are tonnes of hookers and other illicit stuff, if you're in to that sort of thing. Anyways, you get my point.

So me and Chris duck into this Philippino bar/restaurant and grab a cheeseburger and a beer. One thing leads to another, and we've lost track of time and missed the last train. Oops. Whatever, we're not in a rush and it's cheap to stay in Busan. So we get drunk and party, but my phone is dead and I can't get hold of my girlfriend. I figure she'll be worried, but how bad could it be? Well, it was.

We got back to our apartments around 4pm the next day or somehting, and I have about 20 text messages that are progressively more scared and worried. I finally get hold of her, and she probably cried for the first 2hours. She had called the police, immigration and just about every office you could think of trying to find me. But they can't give out that information at immigration, so she was left clueless. To make things worse, the immigration guy told her:
"There are two possibilities. #1, he didn't get into Korea and was deported. Or #2, he found out how much fun Busan is, and was having a 'good time'."

LOL, jerk. So yeah, after she stopped worrying and was finally reassured that I was safe, she went off on me about how I was probably cheating and all kinds of other things her imagination could contrive. But whatever, it took a while but i smoothed everything over. Lesson learned.

So that's about it. I'm gonna grind for two more weeks, then I'm off to Bali. Ahh, you've got to love life. :D


Anonymous said...


awesome trip, but damn your tattoo came out soooo sweet. good choice

Anonymous said...

sick trip report john.

LOL @ immigration officer.

you're living the life man.


Anonymous said...

i'd like to say nice tatt......but.....

also is that a double chin you are sporting in that pic of you and that girl?


the_main said...

I figured you'd like it goober. :(
i'm gonna cry myself to sleep tongiht.

also, yeah its a double chin, I'M WORKING ON IT. But hey, thanks for being a dick.

I'm soooo gonna stack you.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a good time. Why didn't you get the other tat re-done?

Michelle and I set a date for October 25th 2008. I expect to see you and your girlfriend in California!


the_main said...

Yeah I'll be there of could I miss it?

Conrats again guys.