Sunday, September 2, 2012

a taste of night life

I should preface this by saying that I don't really drink. During the school year, I didn't go out a whole lot, as I was working weekend nights at a bowling alley on Georgia Tech campus, and had much more important concerns (i.e. maintaining my GPA) than partying. But, boy, do I love to dance.

the area near Galleria Time World, that looks absolutely stunning at night
And dance I did. Along with a bunch of international students, I went to a "western bar"/club in downtown Daejeon called Sponge. For those curious, the drinking age in South Korea is twenty, but not in the Western sense of age conventions. To calculate your Korean age, add a year to the age you are or will be turning during the year. For instance, I am eighteen years old outside of Korea, but will be turning nineteen in November (yes, I'm young... moving on). That means I am twenty in Korea, and can legally buy or consume alcohol, should I wish to do so.

Anyway, Sponge. We arrived by ushering slightly less than fifty international students onto two Daejeon city buses, exiting at the stop near Galleria Time World, a massive department store akin to Macy's in New York City. When we entered to the sounds of Caravan Palace just before 9:00pm, there weren't too many other people inside, allowing our lot to occupy the billiards tables, and snag a few booths. But as the night went on, the bar populated, seeming much less like a bar, and more like a club. Now, I don't have much experience with clubs elsewhere in the world, but from what I heard from the other internationals, South Korea blows them out of the water. With the progression of the hours, the music shifted from quirky electroswing to a smattering of American tunes from the early 2000s, rap, and Korean Pop. And believe me, you do not understand the wonder that is Gangnam Style until you have danced it with a room of drunk Koreans. Not that I was keeping count, but I'm pretty sure I danced with someone from every continent, and about fifty percent of the countries in the EU.

And while the music at times felt like it belonged at a junior high dance in 2005, many aspects of Sponge were nonetheless iawesome. Around 2:00am, the bartenders staged a "cocktail performance", beginning with acrobatics with bottles, and progressing to fire breathing. It was, needless to say, impressive. Although, there are very few moments when South Korea is not absolutely awe-inspiring.


  1. I like to put the Korean age logic this way: How many different calender years have you lived in?
    The year you are born, it is your first year of living, that makes you 1 year old.
    If you are born in 1993, 2012 is the 20th year you have lived in, hence your age is 20.

    Further comments: I want to see more pics!

    Cheers from your biggest Norwegian fan.

    1. That's also a good way to calculate it. I would include more pictures in this post, but I didn't want to take my camera out to the club, out of fear that I'd break it or something. And, it was out of battery while we were in Mulpyeong, so I'm kinda relying on everyone else to upload their pictures. :/