May 5th is children’s day in Korea so I had no class and every school in the country is closed, but I’m not fully sure if offices are closed. So I wanted to go to Secret Garden inside the Changdeokgung place but my friend had work to do so I ended up going with two SNU buddies. From the campus, it’s almost an hour ride to the Palace, but when we got there the tickets for the Secret Garden were already sold out – I would recommend buying tickets online before going, because they sell out really quickly. It was a day when everyone was outside, so decided to walk to Gyeongbokgung which was only about a 15-20 minute walk from there and if there were too many people we would find another place to go to, or else we would go inside.
While we were there almost everyone was wearing the Hanbok (Korean traditional clothing) and I was so mesmerized by it that when walking past a store where you could rent a Hanbok near the palace and I dragged my friends in saying that I just wanted to see, but we somehow we got distracted among fabrics and on the spot decided to that we were going to rent them. This experience was absolutely amazing, I felt an overwhelming sense of happiness towards the prospect of dressing up in traditional attire. My mom always tells me that I have expensive taste because everything I want seems to be the most expensive thing in the store, so when I went to the Hanbok store the skirt that I wanted to wear ended up being part of their very small “premium” collection, meaning it was twice as expensive than the normal skirts, which I thought was absolutely hilarious, no matter where I am my taste will always be the same.
At first I thought I wasn’t going to fit into the top but it did, and I was really happy. Honestly, it felt like Eid (the big celebration after the month of Ramadan) to me, since on Eid we wear really nice clothes and since this year I couldn’t do that, this felt like an early Eid celebration. I think the best part of the whole experience was when one of my friends had a whole identity crisis in the middle of the store because she couldn’t decide if she wanted the male or the female Hanbok, (I was slightly encouraging her towards the male one so I could take K-drama like pictures with her). Also if you are wearing the Hanbok then you don’t need to buy tickets for the place, it’s free, which is great. It was probably one of my most favorite days here.
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