The year 2013 has been a challenging year to my homeland. As if the recently exposed case of graft and corruption widely known as Napoles case in the Philippines is not enough, series of fortuitous events put our country in a difficult situation. The earthquake in Bohol destroyed some of the oldest churches we have and took the lives of a lot of Boholanos and perhaps the worst typhoon in the history of the Philippines almost wiped out Tacloban in the map with 2013 super typhoon Yolanda aka as Haiyan internationally.
What these unfortunate events brought us are people sending their love all over the world. It was heart warming enough to keep the Filipino spirit alive. And so despite the hardships, I would like to welcome 2014 with even greater hope towards the healing of our nation.
May the blessings of the Lord shower upon us this 2014. As the Korean way to say it:
One of the first expressions I learned in Korean is the verb+고 싶어요 (-go shipeoyo). This expresses wish to ‘verb’ just like how 보고 싶어요 (bogo shipeoyo) would mean I wish to see you or in most cases would mean I miss you.
This lesson I just read reminds me of the first days I tried having a Language Exchange Partner (LEP). He told me how 좋겠어 (chokesseo) in the end of the sentence would also mean expressing hopes and wishes. I didn’t understand back then. He must have had a hard time explaining it to me because i don’t really understand Korean grammar then (well at least now I have better idea).
The format I have learned now is 으면 좋겠어요 (eumyeon chokesseo). 좋겠어요 corresponds to would/will be good or nice while the 으면 refers to if something is blank blank so this expression means it would be good or nice if something exists or happens.
여름이 가지 않으면 좋겠어요 (Yeoreumi kaji aneumyeon chokesseoyo)- I wish summer would stay. It literally mean if summer didn’t go, it would be good.
새 옷 많이 하면 좋겠습니다 (Sae ot manhi hamyeon chokessumnida) – I wish i have many new clothes.
Lastly, this is something I really wish for my self. 한국말을 잘 하면 좋겠어요. (Hangukmareul jal hamyeon chokesseoyo). It would really be good if I speak Korean well.
Having this post, I suddenly missed 진명. I wonder where he is right now. He was my first LEP. 진명이 서울에 만나면 좋겠어요!
So i have learned that the simple modifier (으)ㄴ can be easily done by attaching it to base for of the verb. USing this modifer allows creation of noun phrse or a clause that modifies a noun. The simple modifier has two meanings. With an adjective it means that is or equals noun.
큰 가방 (keun kabang) 크 descriptive verb meaning large added with simple modifier ㄴ and 가방 meaning bag. This noun phrase means large bag or a bag that is large.
좋은 아침 (choeun achim) good morning or morning that is good
예쁜 여자 (yeppeun yoja) beautiful lady or a lady that is beautiful
This simple modifier when added to a processive (action) verb, it has the past meaning like has done or that someone did or has done. The tense is the difference compared to the use of simple modifier with descriptive verb.
떠난 남자 (ddonan namja) 떠나 meaning left and 남자 meaning a man or a guy. This noun phrase means the guy who left.
읽은 편지 (ilkeun pyeonji) the letter that (I did) read
만난 친구 (mannan chingu) the friend I met
Since the processive verb when added with this simple modifier has the past meaning, it is therefore impossible to put this simple modifier to past base form of the verb like 만났은 친구.
Looks pretty easy for now. Although there maybe slight difference the way you do it in English, this is the beauty of the Korean language with just a simple addition of ㄴ to a verb followed by a noun you instantly make a noun phrase.
Every time I open my Continuing Korean book, I always end up reading the lesson on modifiers. I wonder if I would be able to move forward from this lesson. It looks really easy from the beginning and gets difficult as you build your sentence.
I just reviewed how to turn verbs into a modifier form. It really is so simple, just add ㄴ to the base of a verb ending in vowel or 은 if the verb ends in consonant. Here are some examples:
This simple verb in modifier forms has two meanings.
With a descriptive verb, it means the noun that is –> 좋은 아침 (choeun achim) good morning or a morning that is good.
With a processive verb, it has a past meaning –> 만난 사람 (mannan saram) the person that (i) met.
After missing a year of traveling to South Korea, this 2013, I made sure I get reconnected to this country that fascinates me a lot. Although I never really splurged in my visits before, 2008, the first year I visited Seoul was definitely costly than my 2011 visit. These days traveling to South Korea for a Filipino citizen is made affordable with budget airlines. The plane fare in 2008 was around PHP31,000 or about 620USD however these days watching over budget airline sale will only cost you as low as PHP11,000 to a very low PHP7,500 about 175-255USD. Thanks to the stronger peso, a dollar is just PHP43.00 compared to PHP55.00 5 years ago.
I also did get to try a business hotel from financial district in Jong-no to a 3-star hotel in the same area. My overall expenses went down as I learned how to move around Seoul. This year I went from a high of PHP150,000 in 2008 to PHP30,000 in total expenses. It’s not that prices went down but rather being wise about expenses. Since I love traveling to South Korea, I enjoyed every walks and adventure I had from getting lost to finding cheap eats.
Sounds unbelievable but I only spent about 700USD for my 5-day trip to South Korea last April and that includes a side trip to Jeju already. My expenses are broken down as follows:
Food averaging 6,000KRW or PHP300 per meal not to mention all the free breakfast and water were (PHP3,500)
Rest of the budget for transportation such as subway metro, bus and few taxi rides
Our day 1 is supposedly a trip to Nami Island but it rained steadily through out the day so we ended up with a Plan B. Spring came late this year and all our clothes were suited for spring it was so cold temperature dropped at 1~3 degrees celsius. We arrived late night of previous day and took the Airport Express from Incheon to Hongdae so we woke up late and had brunch on this restaurant which we saw on our way to Hongdae Subway station.
Our Plan B destination is no other than the shopping district of Myeongdong. Accomplishing the task of buying bucket of make-ups that my friends back in Manila had requested me to get for them. Despite the trickling rain and the cold we braved the streets of Myeongdong hopping from Skin Food, Etude, Nature Republic, Faceshop to Missha. Going inside each shop was such a big comfort, if it was aircon back in my hometown heater it was for South Korea during that time.
Cafe serving coffee are scattered all over Seoul from international brands to local. Starbucks was not a top choice in Seoul simply because there are so many options available. Coffee was perfect for the weather and we got to try Hollys.
We wrapped up our Day 1 with a HOF couple of blocks away from our hostel. I forgot the name of the HOF, the only thing I can remember is the friend chicken and pickled radish that we had best enjoyed with beer and cider. This was our dinner for the night. How I wish there was rice on the side but it may be weird to eat the chicken with rice as HOFs are place for beers and chicken.
Day 2 was still gloomy, from the free wifi in our hostel, the weather forecast said the chances of rain was 30%. We are determined to go to Nami otherwise our itinerary will be ruined completely. From our hostel we took the Green Line up to Wangshimni and then transferred to Sangbong (Jugang Line) and alighted at Gapyeong Station. We took a short taxi ride from the station to the Nami Island port for another short ride, this time via boat.
Funny as it may seem I have been to Seoul 4 times already but it was only on this visit that I saw the beauty of Nami Island. The place is actually a must see, the Winter Sonata drama made this place famous to every tourist who watched Choi Ji Woo and Bae Yong Joon. Nami Island is simply breath taking.
We spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the island and returned back to Seoul late in the afternoon. Just in time for dinner with a good Korean friend. Felt so lucky to enjoy another good authentic Korean treat.
I met my Korean friend who brought us to this restaurant that served 삼겹살 (samgyeopsal). The place is called 구이마을 (Guimaeul) in 신촌 (Sinchon). True to their culture, dongsaengs grilled the food and served their noonas . To me those experiences were priceless, the warmth of friendship and cultural exchange through food. Another good memories to bring back home .
Day 3 we had to check out and leave our baggage from Twin Rabbit Hostel. We headed to Gimpo airport for a plane ride to Jeju. That was the first time I took a flight from Gimpo, the airport that is mostly used in Korean dramas. We had brunch in Lotteria, a local food chain similar to Mc Donalds.
Our first day in Jeju is spent looking for the guesthouse we had chosen that offers traditional accommodation similar to those Hanoks in Bukchon. The place is called 민박 향나무 (Minbak Hyangnamu) which was located in Hallim-Ongpori. We spent hours looking for the place, the street signs drove us crazy. But it was all worth it, sleeping on a traditional ondol room is one of the activities that I had in my South Korea bucket list.
From Ongpori we headed to the Teddy Bear Museum the next day. I had always been to the teddy bear museum in N Seoul Tower. Now it’s time to see the bigger one, the Teddy Bear Museum in Jeju. The place where one of the scenes from the popular drama 궁 (Goong – Palace) was taken.
The place is not as big as you may have thought but there were lots of teddy bears on display. There could never be just one or two that will amuse you. Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum was just opposite the Teddy Bear Museum but we did not bother enter. Because of the limited time, we needed to head back to Jeju City and find the last quest from our list…cherry blossoms.
We checked-in at You and I Guesthouse located in downtown Jeju. It was adjacent to Jeju City hall. The place is near airport bus stop which was one of the reasons we chose this guesthouse. This way we will never be worried of missing our flight the following day. It was a good decision we made because traveling in Jeju was totally different from Seoul.
The cherry blossoms were almost gone because of the rains. Fortunately there were still some left for us to have picture with. After seeing this, we began to slow down and enjoyed walking around Jeju. The place was laid back compared to Seoul. It is said that Jeju is a crime free place. No wonder gates of houses are left open, I noticed that several times in Hallim. People for some reason is distinct from those in Seoul, I can’t say how but one thing is for sure they are warm and helpful. Despite the language barrier, Koreans in Jeju helped us when we needed directions and even to some extent accompanied us.
As I am writing this entry, I am missing South Korea already. It’s really a place that I wanted to go back again and again.
I certainly love listening to Korean songs. Although it is not a good way to learn the language due to some poetic license, it makes you recall phrases and words that you can actually hear being used in regular conversation. Recently I am inflicted with LSS, short for Last Song Syndrome and the song that keeps on playing in my head these days is an OST from a reality show called ‘The Romantic’. The song is entitled 사랑은 너인 것 같아 (Sarangeun Noin Kot Kata) by 나비 (Navi). That part where she sings the lines 사랑은 너인 것 같아 feels like a big confession of a strange feeling that love brings.
The title of the song is typically translated as ‘I think My Love is You’. I kept on wondering how the title has been translated this way because I only know ‘think’ is 생각하다 (saenggakhada) in Korean plus 같아 (kata) as far as my little knowledge of the language means together with or like. Finally, I saw answer to this. Browsing on my Continuing Korean book, I saw this lesson on Modifiers with 것 같아요. So this modifier actually means seems or looks as if, it literally means same thing as.
The book says it has been very popular expression to young speaker (the book is published 2002 makes me think how young is young ^_^) If I have to use what I just learned then the title of the song can be Seems You are My Love. The book emphasizes on the use of this pattern even on situation where there is absolutely no doubt or question. For someone who speaks English, ‘seems’ connotes a little uncertainty. Typically used if the speaker is not so sure of a fact that he is stating.
Here are some examples of the use of this modifier.
기차가 오는 것 같아요 (Kichaga oneun kot katayo) – The train seems to be coming
감기에 걸린 것 같아요 ( Kamki-e kollin kot katayo) – I seem to have caught a cold
내 책을 잊어버린 것 같아요 (Nae chaekeul ijeobeorin kot katayo) – I seem to have forgotten my book
I was thinking of what to post today. The content I lost for 2012 is not a joke. So my inspiration for this post is the situation I was few hours ago. Traffic in Korean is 교통 (gyotong). The traffic is so bad going out from Makati (south) to Quezon City (north) via EDSA highway. In Korean to say the traffic is bad because of the volume of cars on the road you say 차가 막힌 (chaga makhin). It means the cars are bumper to bumper. I thought it was 나쁜 교통 (nappeun gyotong) which literaly means bad traffic but it is more acceptable or natural to say 차가 막힌.
Whenever I am in the business district or going towards the business district I always find taxi driver saying they are confused in Makati. 마카티는 교통이 복잡해요. (Makatineun gyotong-i bokjaphaeyo). The traffic in Makati is complicated. This is because there are a lot of one-way streets which are not properly marked that if you unfortunately enter these roads you can get 교통사고 (gyotong sago) or a traffic accident or get ticket for 교통 위반 (gyotong wiban) or a traffic violation.
내일 좋은 교통이 좋겠어요. (Naeil choeun gyotong-i chokesseoyo). I wish for a good traffic tomorrow.
I am finally back to blogging. Funny home my last post is about moving to a new hosting server and now I am talking about being back. Yes, I hosted contents outside and I am now having problems getting a year worth of content back. It means all the posts I made in 2012 are gone with the wind 😦
Big lesson, hosting outside may not be a good idea for leisure blogger like me. I practically wasted quarter subscriptions and I miss how easy it is to mange my blog here in WordPress.
Please be back I have lots of things to post plus my 2013 visit to Seoul and Jeju. After missing Korea in 2012 I was back last April 2013. 또 봐요!