Along with memoirs of true friendships, this post also contains brief references to Prostitution and Illegal Trading. Read along only if you are not offended by any of the above topics. If you belong to the other category, please click http://www.cartoonnetwork.com for an appropriate website. 🙂 🙂 🙂
Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) Rating for this post: NC-17 (No one 17 and under admitted) / PG (Parental Guidance Suggested). Source: http://www.mpaa.org/FlmRat_Ratings.asp🙂
Am just kidding guys… I believe all the readers of my blog are adults.. Read on..
This post is the second in a series dedicated to some of the most beautiful people in my life and I don’t mean just the outsides alone. You can find the first one here. This one is about my Mentor became friend Kim Hak June (Korean: 김학준) and his girlfriend Kim Sung Eun (Korean: 김성은).
Let me start with a funny and “weird” instance that I remember. Seoul is famous for prostitution, thanks to the US Army base here. And there is a US Army Base camped at Yongsan, where Hak June and Sung Eun lives. Once I visited Yongsan and told them that I want to see the red light street in Yongsan (since I never saw one before). Here in Seoul, I cant call it “Red Light Area”. It’s different and i believe it should be called “Pink Light Areas”. Such roads have arrays of rooms with one wall completely made of glass (facing the road), beautifully decorated. Each of these rooms is like a bedroom with a makeup table and a mirror. The sex-workers sit inside them wearing minimal to normal measure of clothing and acts out daily routines like doing a make up in front of the mirror, comb their hair etc. All these rooms have pink curtains in front and is is flanked with a dim “enticing”??!!?? pinkish glow. Any “customer” who goes there, watches them through the glass walls and “selects” his “friend” for the night. I was really intrigued when i had heard about such a different system and was really longing to see one of such streets. Naughty Naughty Me!!! 🙂 Sung Eun was really bold and told “Kiran if you wanna see.. Lets” and we walked through a smaller version of the above described road, since if we dare to go through the main streets, the sex-workers will come to us and then you know what… 🙂
I first met him as a mentor when I came to SNU as a first semester student and our friendship has been growing ever since. It’s through him, of course, that I came to know of Sung Eun and we three became really good friends, in other words “clicked”. SNU, like many other universities had a tradition of assigning a Korean Mentor to every foreign student admitted here. It’s more important here in Korea due to a social handicap. That is, you cannot survive here (outside SNU), if you don’t know the basics of Korean language. As any newly admitted student, we had to do some bank work like opening an account and filling in all the details for internet banking, academic work like course registration, registering for dormitory, and the initial shopping for all the necessary things etc. could not have been done without his help. Thanks to him, the expected “few difficult months” in the beginning turned out to be not so difficult at all. Thanks bro. Thanks a lot.
Then through him, I met Sung Eun, another wonderful individual. We three became fast friends and months passed by; they are the people I meet the most excluding my lab mates at MWNL, whom I meet every weekday. Hak June even gifted me my first mobile phone in Korea. I still have that wonderful piece of technology with me and obviously it is an integral part of my daily life. Ever since we met, we have been visiting some places and we have also had opportunities to have dinner together. Since the couple stays at Yongsan, I have been there a lot of times and it has one of the biggest railway stations in Korea, as far as I know.
Did I tell you that Sung Eun plays good violin too? She is really good that she was invited to play as a part of a really famous concert at Yonsei University. SNU, Korea University and Yonsei University are called as SKY universities. The letters from the first letter of their names, and these three are the top universities in Korea (Though the other two are incomparable with SNU in the world ranking 🙂 ..). She was like a really kid playing violin amongst really old and thereby experienced people. I was invited for the concert and Hak June and I went to Yonsei University on 10th November 2007 to see her in action. I had uploaded some photographs of the concert, starting from here, in my online photo gallery (press the right arrow when you reach that page to see more photos).
As a dedication to these wonderful people I had also made a video composing of the photographs of that event. You can view the video here, on YouTube.
We three have shared lots of wonderful time together visiting new hangout locations and tasting different cuisines. Sung Eun is really an adroit person in shopping. She knows how to get things and from where. She has taken me to some amazing locations for certain daily-use purchases (I can’t reveal the details here due to some legal issues, and I am NOT kidding, and NO, it’s none of what you are thinking with your “dirty” mind hehe 🙂 🙂 ). From the road, no one can guess that such a shop exists, and I guess you need to be a known customer for the shopkeepers to let you into those clandestine shops. From outside, they are just old not-used-anymore dusty door covered rooms, but inside they are full-fledged shops with selections beyond your imaginations.
I can never forget the time Hak June helped me with a medical emergency I had. Now, don’t worry my readers. Nothing fatal. hehe 🙂 How can I leave you all so soon?? 🙂 He was with me all the time during the hardships I had faced just like my brother. That’s one thing I respect in Koreans. Accepted that its difficult to get accepted into their circle, but once you are in, you are like a family. I mean a real family. Not like those who say “we are like a family” but they mean “like a family only in terms of disagreements, not in terms of mutual prosperity” (A good example would be I*** for those who know what I mean). Hak June was by my side all the time and he even paid for my medicines, though medical bills are pretty high here in Korea. When I requested to take back the money from me, he just smiled and said “Kiran, This is the least I can do. You have paid a lot for the main treatments; Let me get the medicines for you”. So so so kind of him.
Hmm I can actually go on writing about these friends of mine you know, but the fact is, words cannot describe their character. I am proud to call them my best friends (or rather my bro and sis). Cheers to you guys and Cheers to our bond of friendship. Let us be friends for ever..