That phrase couldn't have meant more this weekend. In spirit of St. Patrick's Day, some friends and I went to Busan, a city on the southern coast, for the weekend. There's a popular Irish pub there and we all needed to get out of Pohang for minute.Busan is a pretty big city and it's only an hour and a half from us. So Saturday morning we hop on a bus (then another bus then a subway) and get to where we need to be. We had a great American lunch then enjoyed some beverages on the beach.
Once it started getting chilly we decided to find a hotel.
In Korea "love motels" are in abundance. They are inexpensive hotels that get their name because it's where Korean men (and couples, too, I suppose) go to...umm... have relations... with their mistresses. For us (and most in the foreign community), they're a place to sleep.
We find an area with a lot of hotels and split up to compare prices. My friends Frances and Lauren meet back up and announce their hotel just said "NO" when they asked how much... And Palan and I say ours is 30,000 won per night (about $30). Not bad... So we get two rooms.
Lauren and I go into our room and it's...minimal. It's terribly old and outdated but it has a bed and a bathroom. We quickly find out it doesn't have a working bathroom. The toilet was broken (coincidentally when both of us had to pee after consuming out beverages...). We had to find the old lady to try to fix it. She used this plunger "contraption" a few times and said "OK" and Lauren told her to try to flush. She said no. So Lauren helped her. What a surprise...it still didn't work. Then Lauren asked her in Konglish to just give us a new room. She said no. Then Lauren, in Konglish again, insisted she give us a new room. She did.
Our new room had a working toilet at least. And stained walls and flooring. Our wooden door had I think five types of wallpaper on it to cover the holes. There was no heat. But there was a (broken) condom dispenser...
Need I say more...?
I nicknamed the place "The Dirty 30." And it fit quite well. The night was great. Everyone had a lot of fun. I don't think I lot of sleep was gotten at The Dirty 30 but it provided a good story to pass along. Our friends stayed at a hotel close to us. We thought they only paid 40 for their room. We should have splurged the extra 10. We found out they actually paid 60 so we were fine with our rooms then. You just couldn't wipe your face with the towel after washing it (there were nasty Korean hairs all over it) or walk around barefoot. We got what we paid for. And a funny story to tell to our friends and family.
I can't wait to go back to Busan again. Maybe next time I'll camp on the beach instead. It will be cleaner.