Eat Ddukbokki BUT don't stare at a single Korean waitress

Just three set of words describe today’s experience.

  1. Korean.
  2. Good food.
  3. Physically attractive women.

It might seem to you like two of the above three are recurring themes in suti’s life.

^_^) Hehe you’re probably right. Suti no can deny writing a lot on Korean and that other topic. 1

But you might suspect suti trying hard looking for these kinds of adventures.

^^;;) *shakes hand in front* ’Tis not true! No planned this. Not this, at least.

*whispers* But suti does welcome these random events with open arms ^^

Today… just happened.

Walk around your city & find the unexpected

You see until this point of the day, sutiben had spent about 3 hours walking around NYC with an old Filipino friend.

_| ̄|○ And suti means going through lots & lots of blocks. Nearly 60 blocks. Under the sun. On a hot day!

Illustration of New York City streets from above with the visible sun hovering over an individual

By now, sutiben’s legs are hurting. Mouth thirsty. Body sweaty.

No felt so drained before.

Fortunately, our time together ends as sutiben drops the Filipino off outside the Grand Central station around 3:37pm. So no more exploring Manhattan. (Read: walking)

The bad news? Sutiben still has to go back home using own legs, which itself is a long walk.

And that’s what suti does. Block after block, sutiben moves one leg after the other to cover the large distance home.

Picture of a stick figure and its lower half body in the process of walking

^^; suti no wanna waste money on transportation fees when have two working legs… suti that cheap.

Maybe because sutiben had rested a bit while saying goodbye to friend that suti’s body doesn’t feel as tired compared to two hours ago.

Could the Gatorade from earlier have helped?

Or is it all just adrenaline from currently moving fast and nonstop?

No matter.

Just imagine a guy crossing many streets as though he has somewhere urgent to go.

W(`0`)W Nothing will stop the march of sutiben.

How much convincing do you need to enter this small Korean place?

Well, that is until these food posters stuck on a window shop capture sutiben’s eyes. Don’t know what about these medium-sized signs that grab suti’s attention. Think ‘tis the bright colors surrounding the store front, specifically the green.

The outside of a Korean restaurant with bright colored signs

Either way, sutiben stops walking and moves in closer to the store window. Only upon looking closely does suti realize this is a restaurant, more importantly a Korean restaurant!

\(^^)/ Waaah, tre bien!~ Thought ’twas a vegetarian joint at first but no. All Korean. suti no try lots of Korean food and really wants to now.

Yet, uncertainty seeps into sutiben’s head about going inside.

  • Earlier in the day, you had a big meal. Won’t eating now overdo it?
  • Do you really want to pay for food when you’re not hungry?
  • Don’t you have to return to your house soon?

Of course, questions easily dismissed after sutiben remembers Jihae once asking if had tried a certain popular Korean meal. What a great chance to find out if it’s any good.

Scanning the photos of the dishes outside and not finding it on display, suti pushes open the door and enters the premises.

The hot Korean waitresses huddled together & your divided attention

At this moment of time, sutiben can only imagine later telling the Korean girl proudly how suti ate and experienced the dish she mentioned.

A guy remembering when Korean friend mentioned a famous food from Korea

Surely, she would ask all about the details next time we meet!

  • When did you go?
  • Where did you eat at?
  • How was it? What did it taste like?
  • Can I cook you a homemade Korean plate? 2

As sutiben enters further into the small restaurant, suti is immediately hit with the sight of a bunch of Korean women. Good-looking Koreans. 3 It’s almost hard to focus on one specifically.

A group of sexy Korean waitresses confronting new visitor

(*^^*;) *covers face* suti’s shyness usually spikes in front of a group. No know why never been comfortable next to lots of people. Add to that they’re girls. *looks at floor* Worse pretty girls.

For one second, one second, they stop sutiben in his tracks.

Drawing of a sexy Korean with long legs in short shorts sitting in a chair

Sitting on the chair to the left is a tall woman with shorts and long legs. She has that confident look, one that is best described by the following saying: “She’s beautiful and she knows it”. The way the other girls sort of surround her table makes her like the “leader”.

Close up of a Korean waitress with a serious almost dead look

Standing in front of sutiben is another female about suti’s height with pale skin and brownish hair. She gives off the feeling as though she’s a serious, no nonsense kind of girl. Not uptight… just not revealing much emotions across her face. Think stoic is the right word. (Had to look it up a dictionary)

There might’ve been another girl in between them but no can remember.

^_^ And to think all these impressions come from the first few seconds. hehe suti a trained observer though. When you’re quiet nearly all your life, you can’t do anything but observe.

Some people would describe them as sexy based on their clothing revealing a lot of their figure. Nevertheless, despite pleasing to the eyes, surprisingly, they aren’t on suti’s mind. 4

In fact, they’re an after thought.

Do you guys sell dobokki? Uhm Ddoddopik?, sutiben quickly asks while at the same time looking around unsure who to address exactly.

They all appear to work there.

The brown-haired Korean speaks up to confirm they do and asks if it’s for here or takeout.

^^)/ Yatta! Will get to taste this Korean dish. More glad they understood suti’s pronunciation cuz no remember the right name.

Takeout, suti replies not sure if wanna stay.

You have to remember sutiben’s heart beating fast and whole body sweating like a pig from walking all day under the hot weather. Sitting down near others in this condition probably not the best idea.

The change of heart: When you’re exhausted, not even lovely Koreans matter

At once, the Korean waitress points suti to the cashier designated for takeout at the back of the restaurant. There, sutiben is greeted by another Korean, who compared to the others, isn’t as pretty.

Guy thinking about what to order in front of cashier

When sutiben inquires about “dobokki”—don’t even know if saying it right—the cashier nods and confirms by pointing to it on the visual menu. However, she then proceeds to ask if this is a takeout order.

Sutiben no sure why she asks again but having more time to think, suti changes his mind. Forget being embarrassed around the waitresses. The working ACs and the seemingly comfortable seats were calling for sutiben’s overworked body.

Almost disappointed, the cashier then points sutiben back to the waitresses, relaying suti’s order.

^^; The flip flop must’ve been confusing.

The brown-haired waitress then comes and sits sutiben on a small table, putting down forks, chopsticks, and a napkin.

Now the only thing left is the food.

What do you do waiting for your exotic Korean food when it’s not polite to stare?

Sitting there motionless for a few minutes, sutiben senses for the first time how much sweat is coming down all over suti’s face.

A guy sweating like a pig

(´・Д・)」 Waaah, even after wiping face with paper towel many times, sweat just keeps pouring down. Even arms too! That walk must’ve been one heck of an exercise.

Guess the effects of working out only hits you when you stop.

Eventually more minutes pass and sutiben starts feeling a lil’ uncomfortable. The way suti was seated forces sutiben to face and stare at the huddled girls in front.

The field of vision of a guy when looking straight ahead

’Tis a lil’ hard but sutiben forces self to look elsewhere from the menu items pictured above, the cook hidden behind the counter preparing suti’s food, to just dead air.

A guy looking above at an angle

Then an idea hits. Why not make good use of this time?

Sutiben digs into his book bag, pulls out his trusty old note book and heads to the cashier girl in the back.

Seeing suti going in her direction, she looks slightly startled probably wondering what’s wrong.

A guy handing the Korean cashier a notebook

Can you write the name of suti’s dish in Korean here?, sutiben asks while handing her a pen.

She does: 떡볶이.

The Korean word 떡볶이 written on a notebook

While writing it down, suti peeks at the menu next to her and finally sees how this popular Korean dish is properly called in English: Ddukboki.

\(^^)/ Yay! Sutiben no longer a dummy, not knowing what will eat.

Given the notebook back, sutiben looks over the Hangul carefully for a while as though it is a holy script.

You see, Korean friend only said Ddukbboki in passing and so everything suti was repeating until now was from a loose memory.

Savor your first Korean 떡볶이 when it arrives

Returning to suti’s seat happy, it’s only a few minutes afterwards that the waitress brings a tray and a bowl. To be honest, didn’t know what to expect. Sutiben thought 떡볶이 was some kind of typical meal consisting of meat with rice on the side.

But in fact, it looks more like soup.

The first thing that strikes you is the reddish color coming from the sauce. Swimming on it are what looks like seaweed, black dots similar to pepper, and floating white cylinders that suti has no idea what they are.

A bowl of 떡볶이

Although the waitress brings a spoon, sutiben opts for the chopsticks.

Not sure but think since didn’t order a drink and they probably saw suti sweating, a new Korean waitress with black hair pops in out of nowhere. Didn’t see this short girl earlier but she places a glass on the table and pours suti a drink.

(^.^) Waaah, suti drinks nearly half of it in one shot the moment she leaves. Grazie! Body happy happy after this. This along with the cool temperature inside calms sutiben’s flaming body over time.

Anyway, inspecting the Korean food carefully, suti takes a sniff.

No, it doesn’t smell funny.

Slowly with the chopsticks, sutiben picks up one of the white cylinders 5 and takes a bite. Don’t know what to make of it. It almost looks like white crab in color but doesn’t taste much.

Also, despite being large, they’re not that easy to hold onto with the chopsticks. Sutiben struggles. At times suti would have them in between the sticks only for it to fall back onto the soup.

*^^*) suti probably looked like a baby playing with food…

Next sutiben picks up the seaweed-looking thing which also doesn’t taste much. Is that how it’s supposed to be?

By themselves not much, but as a whole Ddubokki is really yummy. The red sauce is what brings everything together. It’s a lil’ bit spicy though so it doesn’t help a burning body. 6

The hunchback exists & this is why

While this is going on, like earlier, the group of Korean women are still in suti’s field of vision—which suti continues to avoid— just a few tables ahead. Except now the brown haired waitress is standing only a few feet away from sutiben’s table looking almost like a bodyguard.

A Korean waitress watching over a client enjoying his food

^^; And suti no like eating in front of others *whispers* suti eats like a baby.

Let sutiben repeat: wherever suti looks, there are pretty girls.

(o_o) …

*closes eyes tightly*

To avoid staring at anyone while eating, sutiben looks down at the bowl the entire time. Almost hunching over. Guess ’tis a ’lil weird to be in that position but not too hard. Sutiben genuinely interested in the food. It also allows suti to be closer and inspect each bite.

Midway through the meal, suti must’ve finished glass of water because the black haired waitress returns once more. Almost like a mouse, she appears out of nowhere. Only notice her when hear water being poured from a pitcher.

Water pitcher tilted to pour a drink into a glass cup

( ^ ^ ) Waaah, now that’s service!

Since she’s here, sutiben looks up to her, Do Koreans normally drink the broth of Dokkboki?

A petite Korean waitress holding a pitcher

You see, thus far, sutiben been consuming everything except the red liquid. Don’t wanna look like an idiot by drinking it if not supposed to. What? That’s why suti asking.

The short Korean then goes on to answer.

What happens next sutiben immediately regrets doing.

Standing up, sutiben holds her face with both hands and plants one right in the middle.

Drawing of a lips with the Hangul 키스

(≧∇≦) hehehehe just kidding. suti wouldn’t even have the courage to hold her hand, let alone kiss her.

Actually, what does happen is worse, at least to suti.

Shaking head, sutiben lifts right arm in the air and shakes hand basically saying “forget it”. Just couldn’t understand what she was saying.

Drawing of a human hand waving

She tried explaining a few times but her English wasn’t strong.

*hangs head low* suti should know better than to do that. Didn’t mean to dismiss her like that. ’Twas a quick reaction. Seen others do the same and ’tis mean because you break the speaker’s confidence especially when they’re trying so hard.

Of course, she stops trying and leaves. Didn’t seem upset but suti sure she felt bad. 7

m(_ _)m 미안해! suti sometimes meanie when no mean it.

Take the bill & leave an impression

The tasting goes on for at least 30 mins. From afar this must’ve been a silly sight to watch. Every now and then sutiben would bring each piece to sutiben’s nose to smell before biting.

*whispers* There’s a reason suti a slow eater.

Soon all that remains in the white bowl is the spicy red liquid. Seeing suti done, the brown haired waitress comes over.

’Tis weird.

It could be because she was nearby this whole time but sutiben feels more comfortable around her now. How can suti tell? Sutiben able to look directly at her.

(? ?) Wonder if only get nervous when first meet a girl because scared.

Before she cleans up, sutiben looks at her slim oval shaped face and tries again with the questioning: is it normal to drink the broth of 떡볶이?

It looks like she expected this question. Unfortunately, sutiben doesn’t understand her response. Her sentences are more complete than the other waitress but suti gets nothing.

However, remembering lesson from earlier, sutiben simply nods and acts as though followed along.

ヾ(´・ ・`。)ノ” …

In the end, she brings out the bill and takes away everything as is.

While wait for her to return, suti heads to the back towards the cashier girl.

Sutiben forgot something.

Despite having Dokkboki written down in Hangul, sutiben doesn’t know how it’s supposed to sound and so ask for her help. Don’t want to leave with just a guess and regret later. As she teaches and pronounces the name of the Korean soup for the next few minutes, the nearby cook leans closer trying to see what is happening. 8

With that out of the way, sutiben returns to the table repeating “떡볶이” under his breath and pays the brown haired waitress.

Ready to walk back home after a long rest and a filled stomach, sutiben moves towards the exit. Not a moment sooner does suti hear a serious “bye” coming from the brown haired waitress behind.

At least, it sounds like ’tis from her.

Bye!, another girl’s voice rings with such joy it seems like she’s happy to have met suti.

Turning head slightly back and to the side to see who it is, sutiben notices the black haired Korean; the water pitcher girl!

^ - ^ Waaaah, standing next to her, suti notices how short she is and with that infectious smile can’t help but like her. Didn’t pay much attention to her earlier but she’s really cute as a button!

Caught by surprise at their response, sutiben can only muster a nod before leaving.

Doh’! Should’ve said bye at least. Maybe next time if ever return here.

Once outside suti finds can’t move one step further because want to go back inside. Literally just stands and looks at the restaurant. Luckily, sutiben knows self a bit. To force self to walk away, suti takes out camera and snaps photo of place as a record.

‘Tis a trick suti learned. When can’t forget past, suti just needs a memento.

To be honest, sutiben happy didn’t stare at those Koreans even though they had what seemed like skimpy outfits. Well, to suti at least. If anything felt a lil’ bad for them while there because maybe they’re forced to wear that for the job.

But more importantly, the waitresses weren’t a distraction from the food. Sutiben was able to focus heavily on the food and enjoy ^_^)

  1. Actually, what suti really planned for was totally different from what you’ve been reading lately. Sutiben expected to be covering the Japanese stuff. Nothing about women. So this totally unexpected for suti too.

    *whispers* suti just rolling with it though ^^ ↩︎

  2. ok ok. Maybe the last question Jihae won’t ask. And maybe ‘tis something suti just hoping.

    What? No make fun of suti’s dreams… ↩︎

  3. Even though was watching outside in from the store window, suti was looking at the food photos. Sutiben no even notice any waitresses. ↩︎

  4. sutiben honestly proud only had one thing in mind: food. Felt uncomfy but only because ’twas a group of waitresses. ↩︎

  5. Although ’tis been a while since used them, suti did pretty good with the chopsticks. (v^_^)v Yay, still remember when Asian friends from school taught suti. They were the best! ↩︎

  6. Actually, not that spicy. Only coughed at the end. Can’t be sure if it was because hot or,was stuffing face lots. Hehe. ↩︎

  7. Think she talked it over with the brown haired waitress. Can’t be sure because remember suti’s eyes went right back to the bowl. ^ ^ ↩︎

  8. Hehe funny scene. The cook had nothing better to do but to try listening in. suti strangely gets this reaction a lot. ‘Tis almost as though whenever suti speaks, ‘tis the most interesting thing ever. No know why. ↩︎

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