I had an American flashback today. We were sitting in Burger King having lunch, and I noticed an NBA game on TV. Americans and American English filled the place. I felt like we were back in the United States again! In many ways it felt more "American" than life in multi-cultural Washington, D.C. I know that I previously dissed Burger King in an earlier blog entry, but there was a good reason why we eat at BK today. We had been out shopping and our son was very hungry. BK was the closest restaurant we could find, so we ate there. BK has a big play gym for kids, so we couldn’t help but stop for a burger and watch him play. Also, I have to admit that I can’t eat Korean every day and need my American fast food fix from time to time. It’s too bad that fast food is just about the only "American" food you can find overseas.
Afterwards I went to a nearby store, where I saw the brand-new Ford Mustang on display. The new Mustang sports a retro look reminiscent of the 1960’s-era Mustangs. It’s a muscular and sporty car. I’m not a big fan of American automobile styling, but I have to say that I was impressed. I can’t vouch for what’s under the hood, but I really liked the car’s outward appearance. The Big Three automakers, especially General Motors, have made great strides in recent years to improve both quality and styling. GM cars are now among the world’s higher quality cars, not too far behind quality champions Toyota and Honda. Still, like many Americans we’ve grown used to assuming that American cars lag behind their Japanese counterparts. We’ve been fond of Japanese cars for awhile, but their styling is dated. Toyota has been trying to remedy that with updates such as the Toyota MR-2 and the launch of the entry-level Scion brand in the U.S. I much prefer European styling to Japanese stying. A Mustang is too sporty for a family guy like me, but I might take a look at an American car the next time we plan to buy.
We eat Korean food tonight, getting back into the routine of eating the local cuisine. We went out with friends tonight for "pancake bulgogi", a special type of bulgogi I have never eaten before. It had a unique taste I enjoyed. I’m used to bulgogi; this special type of bulgogi will take a little getting used to. I didn’t catch the name of the restaurant, but my friend who arranged the meal said that people come from miles around to eat at this restaurant. If you visit Seoul, have someone take you for "pancake bulgogi." I enjoyed getting out and exploring Seoul a bit. We took our first walk through a subway station, using it as a shortcut and staying out of the cold. The evening was cool and clear, warmer than the weather has been here in recent weeks. I enjoyed getting together with friends for dinner. We had to divide our time between conversation and watching the children, but I think we still had a good time.