Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Wearing Green and Pretending to be Irish... It must be St. Patty's in Korea!

St. Patrick's Day is a big deal back home... and, as I found out, also in Korea.  For twelve years, the Irish Association of Korea has been organizing and hosting the free St. Patrick's Day Festival in Seoul to celebrate Ireland's patron saint... and to give everyone an opportunity to wear green and get uncontrollably intoxicated.  So we decided to partake in this year's festivities with a beer in one hand and soju in the other!
I'm actually just posing with Chris' beer to "look" cool.. I started drinking much later!

After a quick run in the morning, we left Jukjeon station just past noon.  The events in the D-Cube plaza near Sindorim station were set to being at 12:30pm so we had planned to arrive fashionably late (or more likely to pace ourselves).  However, when we met up with our usual accomplices, Chris and Bri, they already had a drink in hand.  A few short subway stops later, our friend Barry met up with and and we set out, all sporting green attire, to conquer the Irish festival.
Chris and Bri showing the love!! This pic is from later... But it let's imagine where we are headed!
By the time we arrived at Sindorim station, about an hour later, Chris had already managed to consume an enormous amount of alcohol.  I, being older and not as tolerant, had decided to pace myself, having only a few sips here and there.  But once we stepped out into D-Cude square, the atmosphere reminded me that it was time to get the party on.  Barry led us to the local Home Plus where we purchased more beer than we should (or in Jen's case a half mickey of soju and orange juice), and of course, the mandatory pints of Guinness.
Find Chris and Bri

Back at the festival, a Korean U2 tribute band had invaded the stage and was rocking out all of the classics.  Jen and I decided to get in line to get our faces painted with some traditional Gaelic symbols.  A few beers later, I was sitting in front of my face-paint artist, waving my phone at her to show her what I wanted to get. Until then, all the people had a small symbol painted on their cheeks... but that was not for me.  I wanted the whole package!  Luckily, after a few "OMGs", she accepted my request and I happily ended up with this (to say that beer clouded my judgement might be an understatement):
Me: This is what I want; Korean lady: Oh My God!
Jen's art... Somehow butterflies are Irish now.. just like the rest of us on this day!

We then met back with Bri, Barry, and Chris, who was in a very very "happy" mood!  Our friends Katie and Mary showed up a few moments later with even more people to complete our party of extraordinary people.  On stage, some Korean Irish dancers were dancing up a storm with the huge congregation cheering them on, all compulsorily clad in green.  The atmosphere was very jovial with the sun shinning bright over the vast crowd of intoxicated foreigners.  When a traditional Irish group took to the stage, Jen and I decided to come down from the bleachers and participate in the Gaelic dancing happening on the floor.  We met up with yet more friends who were also shaking their @$$ to the convivial Irish melodies produced by the band.  We were all  undoubtedly having a jolly good ol' time!
Dancing and singing with Chris
Dancing with Niko
As the event was soon drawing to an end, we transferred over to Itaewon, where we met up with Dana before going to the Rocky Mountain Tavern for dinner and to continue the festivities.  By this time, Chris could barely speak, but he could still manage to chug down copious amounts of beers (Boy, can that guy drink!!!)  A few hours later, the party crowd found us and invaded RMT to fire up yet another round of drinking and dancing.  (Some Koreans even came to have their pictures taken with the crazy face-painted "Irish" guy in the corner.  I momentarily thought about charging a drink for a picture, then decided on better judgement.)  "Have No Name", the U2 cover band we had seen perform earlier, even plugged in their instruments and rocked the place to shambles.  RMT became so packed that it was an adventure just to go to the bathroom.  I guess that is about the time we decided to take out leave, but not before a trip to McDonald's for some much needed (NOT) junk food (I preferred stopping at Subway on the way).

Yes random lady, you can take a picture with me
Just past midnight, we jumped into a cab, despite Chris' objections, that took us back to Jukjeon.  While I passed out in the backseat (I just can't drink the way I did back in University), Chris serenaded us by singing along to whatever was playing on the radio.  It was the end to a great day of binge drinking with incredible company!  Where we will celebrate St. Patrick's Day next year, nobody knows... but it will be hard to surpass the fun factor we experienced on March 17th 2012 in Korea!


As I was researching what to do on St. Patty's Day in Korea, I came across this video that definitely put a smile on my lips.  I thought I would share it with you!  Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. Duh! i didnt know i added you guys video and i know its bit late, but i think i saw you guys face in Saint patrick Sindorim d-cube festival haha
    glad you guys having blast in here! thanks for post!