Colorful Crabs

This past weekend I joined two outings that
were both a great time! On Saturday, my friend Katt and I joined in with a
group headed to Yeongduk for the annual Snow Crab Festival. The festival was a
bit small, and we were able to see everything it had to offer fairly quickly
(even with Katt’s broken foot setting the pace!). But it was a nice, relaxing
trip. And also delicious! We were able to try so many delicious crab dishes,
and lots of free samples! We had free samples of crab legs, makgeolli, and
cream-filled bread to name a few. The dishes we purchased were quite
delightful. We enjoyed a crab soup (my least favorite item), a crab wrap, crab
spring rolls and a crab pancake-like food (my favorite item). We also tried the
chicken skewers you can find at any Korean festival for good measure, since we
had wanted to try them for a while, but for whatever reason failed to do so at festivals
we previously attended! It was all scrumptious and incredibly cheap! I was so
happy to eat so much fresh crab. And there were thousands of them in tanks or laid
belly-up on display. There were also many other sorts of sea creatures,
including lobsters, octopus and an intriguing looking animal that looked like a
combination between a fish and an eel. Over all it was a delightful trip, and a
festival worth checking out at least once!

On Sunday Katt and I joined forces again
for the Holi Hai festival in Busan. Holi Hai is an Indian festival that is
celebrated each year to welcome spring. Basically you wear white and get a
rainbow’s supply of richly colored powders. Then you shout, dance and prance
with joy while throwing the colored powders in the air or at your friends (or
complete strangers too!). Face paint is also distributed (think of the acrylic
paint you use in elementary school) to paint everyone around you with. The goal
is to get as colorful as possible. If you do it expert level, no one will even
be able to tell your outfit started out white! The party got into full swing
after we became Easter eggs, and everyone danced to the blaring techno music.
It was a great time.
Ever since going to India, and first hearing about Holi, I have desperately
wanted to take part in a celebration of the event. While I would certainly love
to attend one in India, I was very happy to join the Indians in Korea (along
with other foreigners and Koreans) to celebrate at Haeundae Beach. We didn’t
dance away the entire day at the beach, but decided to get a nice cup of coffee
to help warm ourselves up. Later we went to a nearby “Hawaiian” restaurant and
enjoyed a very scrumptious buffet lunch, though I’m not sure where the Hawaiian
food came into play. Our colorful faces and attire got us some side glances,
and stopped dancing children in their tracks (their faces quickly registered
fear and confusion upon seeing us), but most people just seemed to chalk it up
to foreigners being crazy foreigners. I did have a couple moments in the meal
when I just started laughing, because I realized how ridiculous we looked, but
it just added to the general merriment of the festival. It was a great day and
I certainly plan to go again next year!

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