Monument to Rudolf Maister, our general.
This was my second day as tour guide for my Korean friends. It was Sunday and I was about to show them our capital city Ljubljana. I came to Ljubljana in the afternoon, around 3pm, because they were visiting our beautful Bled. So we met at the trainstation and then headed towards the centre. The city was virtually empty. The only people left were tourists. It was hot and dry, so it was quite tiring to walk so much. But anytime I asked them, if they want to see some building that was a bit far off, they said yes.
Zavarovalnica Triglav building, designed by Plečnik.
The highlight was Ljubljana's Old town and the castle. While walking around thru the old narrow streets, I saw trouble ahead. There was a bunch of people, maybe 2 or 3, on bikes and one of them was shouting and harrassing passers-by. He had a golf club in his hand. And guess what? He was a skinhead. Now imagine I pass by with four Koreans. Luckily I saw a street on the left and I started walking faster and telling some stories to them, to distract them. Those assholes became louder and louder and I was afraid that they might follow us. Luckily they didn't. I remember that while these Koreans were in Austria, they told me someone look at them strangely and they didn't like it there. Then you can imagine how nervous I was that maybe some idiot says or does something stupid. Fortunately, everything was fine. Later I asked them, if they saw any people who would look at them strangely here. They said no. Pheeewww... I was relieved. Then we went up on the castle and they snapped some nice panoramic photos of Ljubljana.
The time for my departue came nearer. I had to go back home at 19.45, if I took some other train, it would be a very slow train and I'd come home late. And they were tired, too. So while we walked back to the train station, there was this girl like 50m infront of us. She was walking very slowly in high heels, she had shorts and a black yet transparent shirt on. Her body was amazing, I thought she was a model... and how he butt swung... wow... We were walking faster than her, so we caught up with her near the train station. All of us were waiting for the green light and I saw that she was checking us out. Maybe we were just a funny group: 4 Asians and a white guy, talking in English. Anyway, we crossed the road faster and the guys were hungry, so we went straight to McDonald's. 1 min later, she was in there, too. Maybe just a coincidence. The guys ordered some big menues, while she just ordered a small burger and sat very close to our table (hmm, I wonder). Eric said: She's hot. I said: Yea. Eric is the oldest one, he's the only one who smokes. He looks like a cool guy who would pick up a girl. Well, they were so busy with food and I busy with them, that the girl left and nobody, besides me, noticed. So Eric suddenly wondered: Where is she? She's gone, I replied. He was disappointed. Well, I never asked, if he would talked to her, but he might. We'll never know now.
Anyhow. After McD, we went for a beer and chatted like 1h. It was fun. They told me a lot about Korea and I told them things about Europe. Time just flew by and we had to say good bye. They told me they had a great time in Slovenia, better than expected and they thanked me a lot. It made me feel good that I was appreciated. But we had to part and I was kindly invited to go to Korea next time. I hope I will, because I always wanted to go (Update: And I did!).
Some more photos from that day:
What happened after the trip: Interestingly, Hwan (actually Kim Tae-Hwan), who was my friend for many years, suddenly unfriended me, when he returned back to Korea. It didn't happen right after the trip, but gradually over the summer and autumn of 2009. We were still fine in September, but in October he became distant and started to blame me for some things. It was right at that time, where I met my current girlfriend Lily and spent more time with her online and less with him. I thought a friend would understand that, but apparently, he didn't. He slowly blocked me in his emails, Twitter and Facebook (as Patrick Kim). He also kept changing his Western name from Shayne to Patrick to Simon... He deleted his blog, locked all profiles and stopped replying to all my questions. First I was surprised and didn't know what was going on, then I begged him to give me an answer why is he doing that, then I was angry and tried to spite. But I guess I never really got over this weird move. He adored me, called me hyong (big brother), he was so happy to meet and he promised me to guide me in Seoul, if I come to visit. Then he suddenly unfriends me and pretends like I don't even exist! And I was so nice to him, tour guided him around Maribor and Ljubljana, drove him and his friends around and even treated them few times. I don't regret that at all, but I would expect a little respect from him. Before going to Seoul this May, I begged him to meet me and to help me find my way. Guess what? He just ignored me. Just ignored and pretended I don't even exist and I went to Korea just to meet him. All his promises from the past faded away. And he tries so hard to have a good face (especially at AISEC Korea, where he's active), but what he did to me was beyond disgraceful. I'm still disappointed.
[All photos by MKL, 2009]