25 (Tue) August 2020
from Onjeong Son Mandu
-Changgok, Sujeong, Seongnam, Gyeonggi, Republic of Korea-
with the Family
For various dumbfuck reasons, I am still in the process of getting my F4 visa to live and work in Korea, with only 5 days remaining until my 3-month tourist visa expires. One dumbfuck reason is that the immigration office doesn’t allow for the simple renewal of an expired F4 visa, which I had for decades until I forgot to get it extended while I was in the Philippines. Another dumbfuck reason is that the new application procedure for US citizens requires an FBI criminal background check over the past 10 years – I lived 6.5 years of the past 10 years in the Philippines, and 3.5 years in Korea – which took time to obtain due to delays in processing at Quantico, because presumably/hopefully the FBI has better things to do. A third dumbfuck reason is that the FBI background check also requires an accompanying apostille – as a lawyer, as something of an international lawyer, I had never heard of such a thing until today, when I went to submit my documents and got rejected because I didn’t have the apostille. Having spent the past 6.5 years griping about bureaucratic bullshit in the Philippines, this is karmic retribution.
I’m scheduled to start my new job next week, which I’ll have to do as an undocumented worker.
Onjeong Son Mandu (온정 손 먼두) is a Korean restaurant. Specializes in handmade (son) dumplings (mandu), as well as handmade noodles (kal guksu).
I discovered the place on my prior trip to the immigration office – including today, I have made 3 trips thus far. I had arrived a bit early, hungry, and the building had immediate parking out front, so I gave it a shot. The food was excellent. After I was done eating, I left the car there and walked to the immigration office.
This time, I scheduled my appointment for 1100, so I could complete the appointment and eat lunch at the restaurant.
Again, the food was excellent. I ordered the mandu kalguksu, which comes with both the dumplings and the noodles. The simple anchovy broth was rich and crisp. The noodles were thick and rough and chewy, as were the skins of the dumplings. Within, the dumplings were fluffy and meaty and nutty. Though still enraged, and confused, by the apostille crap, I was happy with the meal.
The restaurant sells mandu to go. 24 dumplings, raw, in a box. I couldn’t resist.
However, they didn’t taste as good at home, maybe because I’d boiled the dumplings in plain water, compared to those served in the anchovy broth at the restaurant. Or maybe I was mandued out.
(For more details re food, see WHAT)
(For more details re venue, see WHERE IN KOREA)