Sunday, March 18, 2012

Cubao to Davao

After months of just sharing something from somewhere or someone, I write once again- because this is worth writing about. Last Friday, I took a leap of faith. I left Metro Manila - my family, my job, my friends (and my car : ( ) and took a plane to Davao, where I decided to settle and live the coming [n] years of my life. It was a move motivated not by professional reasons but by personal decisions, most of which, greatly involve marital plans. Suffice to say, I decided, I acted, and now I'm here in Davao, momentarily alone - no family, no friends, no TV, no DVDs, no books - just a small house and a few basic items to just make it through every day.

It's only been three days since I left and it already feels like a week. I kill boredom by driving around and going to malls. I tried talking to the security guard downstairs but he seemed happier opening and closing the gate (or maybe he just find it hard conversing in Tagalog) than talking to me. If this is getting too 'OA' for you then stop reading 'cause its going to get worse.

Friday. My first night here in Davao was depressing, I guess because it was the time when everything just sinks in, knowing that I am already here, starting a life from scratch. My morale gets the needed boost from calls from Tet, my parents and friends. I was dreading the next morning because I already have to start at work.

Saturday. When I woke up, I read an SMS from a friend sharing about her dream and I smiled - thank God for small favors. My first day at work was surprising - I'll just leave it at that. I spent the day being oriented and brought to different project sites. Work ended and I drove back to the house for a little more alone time, awaiting my first Sunday as a Davaeno.

Today (Sunday). I attended my 'first' mass, bought my 'first' groceries, washed my 'first' laundry and paid for my 'first' car wash. The closest human interaction I had were 'conversations' with sales ladies, a car wash boy, two guards and a waiter. All starting with them asking me something in Bisaya and me, telling them I did not understand a single word they said, and them repeating what they said in Tagalog. It's smooth sailing afterwards, but I just have to start with the same ordeal over and over again. It was a full day, and every now and then I look at my phone hoping to see new SMS messages.


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Searching for Authentic Korean Cuisine

Tet and I have been on the look out for restaurants serving authentic Korean cuisine. Since there are already a huge number of Koreans living and studying in the Philippines, its really not that hard to find one. About two weeks ago, we chanced upon this restaurant in Pasig City at Home Depot. The place is filled with Koreans eating dinner so we knew it was the real thing. We have eaten Korean Samgyeopsal in several restaurants like Donday at UP Village and Tajimaya at SM Mall of Asia, but this restaurant seemed more inviting to me, maybe because of its simplicity and the wood panels at the exterior. The restaurant is named SEOUL FUSION - having passed my criteria for ambiance, its time to test the food.

We ordered Samgyeopsal, as usual. An order of 2 sets of meat platter includes an array of vegetable kimchis and of course, a leaf tray. One thing new about the leaf tray though, is that it includes sesame leaves, which I haven't tried before. The set also includes a free pot of hot vegetable and tofu soup.

One thing about a samgyeopsal meal or even an eat-all-you-can Korean meal, is that everything you eat burns easily. I mean, when was the last time you saw an obese Korean? It's all lean meat and vegetables, not to mention all the chilis involved. You may choose rice,   but I prefer the leaf tray.

We also ordered cold noodles that looked really good, with all the different colors in one tray. We however, were unaware that the COLD noodles would be smothered in a very HOT sauce. Our tongue gave up before we even emptied half of it. It was delicious, but a bit too hot for my palette.

The pork meat were grilled over burning charcoals, the fat draining off the sides. I grilled some garlic and chilis on the side. I like a little garlic in a samgyeopsal meal.

When you eat Korean, you have to eat it the Korean way. What you do is, you place a leaf in your palm, put some grilled meat on it, add your choice of vegetables, kimchi, garlic, chilis - well, it varies depending on your taste, the point is, you have to roll everything inside a leaf. After trying the sesame leaf, it is hands down my favorite. It's a bit minty, adding another dimension to the mix.

After we have eaten our full we were treated to a free dessert of red mongo on ice and milk. It was the perfect dessert for a hearty meal. So next time you are in Pasig City, visit Seoul Fusion and treat yourselves to an authentic Korean cuisine.