Occasionally the ship ports in the same place for 2 days, giving us the option to stay on land overnight. My first “overnight” experience was last week in Busan.
I hadn’t been to Busan since joining the ship in early July. It felt strange being there again. I feel like so much has happened in the past month and a half, but being back at the port, I felt like no time had passed. My perception of time is very skewed!
I got off the ship mid-afternoon on the first day in Busan. My roommate and I shared a cab with some members of the sports staff and had an amusing conversation with the driver. In broken English, he asked if I was from Singapore. As a fair-skinned ginger, I was quite surprised by this question! When we got downtown, I took advantage of free, fast internet at a cafe. On port days, everyone uploads photos on Facebook, so I was flooded with notifications all afternoon!
We returned to the ship for dinner and a short rest, and then took cabs out to Hayundae Beach. A few of my cast mates, some ice skaters, stage staff members, musicians, and a few officers all met up at a bar called Thursday Party. Our cab driver wasn’t sure where we needed to go, so he dropped us off in the neighborhood, and I ended up asking the concierge at a hotel and a few people on the street for directions. Luckily, my nonverbal communication skills are pretty good these days, and we found the spot without too much trouble.
We split into smaller groups, wandered into a hookah bar, and ended the night (or, more accurately, the morning) at Burger King. Upon returning to the ship, I climbed straight into bed. A few hours later, we went out again for coffee, internet, and shopping! I have to say, cinnamon mochas are incredible!
While I didn’t really have a cultural experience in Busan, I feel like I was able to see a different side of the city than I would with normal sightseeing. All in all, I had a great first overnight!
We’ll be returning to Busan next month, and I intend to go to the aquarium, some temples, and a famous tower. I hope the next stop there is just as fun!