About three weeks ago, I went to the Lotus Lantern Festival in Seoul for Buddha’s Birthday. This festival is held annually and this year, it fell on April 26th. This event brings local and international visitors together for a fun filled evening under thousands of illuminated lanterns. The parade began at Cheonggyecheon Stream and moved toward Jogyesa Temple and Bonguensa Temple. The lantern parade was said to feature more than 100,000 large lanterns, varying in shapes from lotus flowers, to elephants, to dragons. This was definitely accurate. The parade itself lasted over 2 hours.
A group of us decided to head down to the Jogno street area at around 6 pm that Saturday evening. When we got there, we noticed chairs lined up along both sides of the street. We looked around but majority of the seats were taken. We decided to stand in an open area to ensure we had a good view. That’s when a few ajummas grabbed us, threw ribbons around our necks, handed us candy, yogurt drinks, lanterns and made us sit with them. It all happened so fast that the five of us were in shock. They were so sweet!!! They were excited to hang with us and asked us to take pictures with them. That was probably by far my best and will be my most memorable experience with ajummas in Korea.
Once the parade was over, we headed over to Vato’s in Sinsa for some Texas Tea, kimchi fries and burritos! Once we were done feasting, we made our way home with full, satisfied stomachs!