[Fan Account] Star’s Encounter 10.17.10
Seeing Hyun Joong in Seoul
courtesy of Lavender
The guest house is quite far from the airport and the bus only comes every hour, so in order to catch my 10 o’clock I need to get up at 6:45. I am not a morning person and hate to get up early, but somehow I woke up at 6:44. Checked my email before I left the guest house, the Korean fan emailed me that she may know HJ’s shooting site later and I can go with her. Another chance to see him, can’t complain.
The morning air was so fresh and it was still foggy, then sun hung in the sky above the mountains, beautiful scene. This is going to be a good day, I tell myself. The bus was really on time, if I missed it, I would have to take a taxi and it ain’t cheap. The bus ride to the airport was uneventful, passing all the farm lands. Some women were already working in the field, squatting down and using hands to plant or pull something. For them, there’s no Sunday. Watching them reminds me my great aunt who took care of me for several years when I was a child. She is the most generous and kindest person I know, she treated me better than her own children or more like spoiled me. She was always the first one to get up in the morning and did all the house work. She would buy vegetable seeds and planted in their small piece of land, later she would go to the market to sell the vegetables for a few dollars.
It took an hour and half to get to the airport, I was hoping to get on an earlier flight but it was full, so I got an hour to kill. Well, since I forgot to take pictures of the airport when I arrived, now it’s the time. So I marched outside to the parking lot and tried to look for the spot where HJ waited for Hwang Buin. The ladies directing traffic are very pretty and wore nice red uniform, can’t help taking their pictures. So when I figured out the spot, I asked someone to take a picture of me there, he did obligate but I know what he was thinking, is this woman crazy or something why does she want to have a picture taken in an airport parking lot standing next to a trash can. Oh well, ajussi, there are crazy people out there of course, the world needs normal and crazy people to balance things out.
Now it’s time to get some breakfast, there is a food court in the airport and I ordered abalone porridge. I asked for a corner table so I could watch WGM Joongbo honeymoon on my laptop without other people stare at me. No matter how many times I watch it, it’s still funny, the 4D prince. Now I paid very close attention to the surroundings. Oops, the spot I took the picture was not the one he stood, oh, well, didn’t want to go back out, at least it’s within 100 meters, I comfort myself. When they arrived in Saees, they walked through the court yard which is actually not the direct route, but I guess the space is bigger and easy for filming. The porridge didn’t taste that good and it cost 10,000 won, a total rip off. Soon it’s boarding time and got another dose of SS501 singing the Jinair song. Don’t know why they play this nonstop, gotta feel sorry for the crew, I love SS501 dearly, but listening to the same song over 100 times a day would drive me insane.
The plane took off and I looked down, it was still foggy. In my heart, I said anneoyo to Jeju Island and was thankful it gave me a good memory. Then I got sleepy and dozed off till landing. Took me an hour and half to get back. When I checked in the front desk, I quickly checked my email and the Korean fan emailed me the time and location. I asked the staff to call her to check when and where to meet. Shooting would be at Citizen’s Forest Park in Gangnam Gu at 1:30, kind of far from me. She was on her way and told me to hurry, it was already passed one. So I dumped everything in my room and flew out again. Since I would be late, thought about taking a taxi, but in the end I chose to take the subway. It’s OK if I am late and shooting is usually late anyway.
It was warm so I wore a sleeveless top, but when I got outside and realized everyone wore layers and no one I mean no one wore short sleeve clothes, let alone sleeveless. Aren’t they hot? I got a bit self conscious and started to look around to see what other people were wearing in the subway, aigoo, most people wore dark and long sleeves, I really stuck out. Fortunately I brought my cardigan sweater. But it is the same one I wore in Jeju, now I worry the crew might recognize me, this one again. Oh, well, too late now.
It was almost two when I got to the park, but I walked around and around and couldn’t find any filming. Saw people wearing colorful traditional hanbok, there’s a wedding, I got excited since the wedding scene is yet to be filmed. But when I got close I found out it was a real wedding. Odottke. I should call her, but couldn’t find her number, I was sweating. Then miraculously I found it and called her, she told the location. I asked around and it was right behind me, like 50 meters. There were around 40-50 fans standing around, I soon spotted her. I was screaming “Komsamnida” to her because without her email, I would’ve never had the chance in Jeju. She pulled me aside and told me HJ was still in the car. I looked up, the black van was parking on the roadside, Cody noona and the manager were standing outside the door, apparently she was fixing his hair. The fans were waiting patiently and told me no pictures were allowed, I saw some had long lens one but they didn’t take pictures. They just waited to see him getting out of the car and walking to the shooting site, that would be like 15-30 seconds. I got a pretty good spot behind the van and would be able to see him clearly, I took out my not so good camera, the Korean fans said maybe it’s Ok since I am a foreigner. Since he is in the public space and I don’t feel bad taking a few photos if I can. Just a few minutes later, some movement by the van, he is coming out, people started to move around. I zoomed in and started clicking. He wore a black coat, a white shirt and black stripe sweater underneath. Black pants, making his legs looking very I mean very skinny, he really needs to gain some weight. He was holding the script and I saw his lips moving as if he was practicing the lines. He walked very fast with a serious expression, you can see in the photos. I was able to take 5 or 6, only one clear front, how I wish having one of those can take 10 pictures in one second. I was not aware if any Korean fans took pictures, they said encouraging words to him as he walked by. The shooting site was probably about 100 meters from where we stood. Some fans brought their binoculars, well I put mine in ET’s suitcase, darn it.
While waiting for the filming to start, I wanted to show the fans my pictures of the signed CDs, but somehow I couldn’t find it, maybe they were deleted from the camera when I uploaded them to my laptop last night. Oh, well. Then my camera battery died, and my iphone battery died too, how timely. The Korean fans are quite envious and they it’s actually very difficult to get HJ’s autograph and I got two. I felt very lucky and just can’t thank the good fan enough.
The shooting finally started, HJ (BSJ) and JSM (OHN) walked together in the park, BSJ said something to OHN and she screamed and jumped around. BSJ just stood there. They did the same shoot 4-5 times, each time we could hear the scream very well. As I said before, she is loud and for sure she can scream. But I bet I can scream louder than her if HJ (BSJ) said the same thing to me! JSM had to work hard and all HJ needed to do was just standing there, not too bad. During one shoot, a kind Korean fan let me use her binocular, I saw HJ’s facial expression clearly, he was smiling when JSM screamed. I just love love his smile, heart melting!!!!!!!!!!! I was guessing that BSJ was telling OHN that he wanted to go to medical school that’s why she was so happy. But Korean fan told me that he told her that they were going to Jeju for honeymoon.
Then they did a close up shoot for the same scene, again did several takes. In between, they just stood around, Cody noona of course was trying to fix his hair every chance she got. It is really a lot of work for shooting such a short scene. For over an hour of work, we may only see 30 seconds of it on screen. The crew and manager were very strict, walking around to check and making hand gestures to tell fans no photos.
Oh, almost forgot, I was able to thank HJ’s manager personally. When I saw him coming back to the van, I walked up to him and thanked him for dropping of the CDs at the hotel. He didn’t understand much English I can tell, then I said “Jeju do, Saees, SS501 CD”, he was like “Ah.” A Korean fan who speaks English came to help me out. I said Komsamnida to him several times, I was very grateful to get it since I traveled so far to here. He was very polite and acknowledged. I am very thankful that HJ is now under Keyeast, he is in good hands.
After the shooting finished, HJ, Cody noona and manager walked back to the van, fans again lined up to greet him with encouraging words. I didn’t take pictures this time because I COULDN’T, the battery DIED. The next filming site is quite far, 2 hours away, fans were debating whether to go. After discussion, they decided not to go. I wanted to go to Jaksal Chicken restaurant, and the Korean fan I met in Tokyo said OK, so we went there with another 2 fans, they speak English very well. In the car, we were exchanging stories of how we became KHJ fans. It was very fun, I was happy beyond words. I can’t believe that I was able to meet them. They know everything so I asked a lot of questions, sorry I have to keep some to myself and can not share.
When I saw the Jaksal sign, I was so excited and screamed “Jaksal!” It’s at the corner of the streets, not big. Seems some fans were already here, I am sure HJ fans frequent this place a lot. One guy in orange shirt came to greet us, he is one of the 4 HJ chingus working in the restaurant and he speaks good English. He lived in Canada for a while. Other fans told him I am from US to see HJ. He told me he is HJ’s high school friend, the other three were from same elementary school. He and another guy went to Spain with HJ, that’s one went to the soccer game with HJ. I told him that a fan in Morocco was able to spot HJ from the TV and also I saw them playing soccer in HJ’s Spain trip videos. They all seem very nice. We asked when was HJ here last time, he said HJ stopped by last week. But he usually comes very late, now he is busy shooting drama. It’s so good to know that HJ is able to maintain close relationship with his childhood friends.
We ordered various kind of fried chicken, dobotke (not sure about the spelling, you know the famous spicy rice cake HJ can cook). The serving size is huge and we all share. The chicken tastes very good, but soon we forgot about food and just happily chatted away. I was so excited to find out the ones who were with HJ when they got beaten up by the thugs. HJ talked about it in an YYMM episode in 2009 during BOF promotion. These boys sure have grown up to be good now. We swapped stories and gossips. I got to ask him questions when he has time, he is very nice and patient. I told him that I went to Jeju island to see HJ and wrote him a letter in English, I am sure he got the letter, please translate it for him when they meet next time, and please teach HJ English. He said he would try, very cute. I like to take pictures of food so I ask a Korean fan to take them and send to me, but I got a menu flyer as souvenir, and I want the owner’s autograph, am I getting too greedy?
Of course before I leave, I have to have pictures. The orange shirt guy (sorry, haven’t got their names straight yet) got another guy (white shirt) to post pictures with me together, he is the one HJ called during one of WGM episode, I am sure you know what I am talking about, right? I told him he is famous among international fans, he was like, no no, he speaks some English too. How come our boy doesn’t! He is cute, and for sure has been working out, got very nice arms, all muscles, I don’t think those are from frying chickens. Just make sure to drag your buddy there too so he can put some meat on his body (OK, just my inner thoughts, didn’t really say that to him).
Another happy day for me in leaderland. Let me stop here for now, need to go to sleep. Will check my memory again tomorrow to see if I missed anything today. Pictures later.