I prefer hosteling or couchsurfing because I like to be social and meet new people. Making new friends or finding people who express interest in penetration sometimes happens, but that's a potential bonus, never a goal. Meeting interesting, cool, weird, or fucked up people has always been a significant part of my travel, widening my experiences and giving me glimpses into the wisdom of older, more well-traveled folks. Not that all older people are wise or even well-traveled. Some are shamefully ignorant pieces of shit, and it's fascinating to meet them too.
My first night in Seoul I met Marcel, a German sneakerhead taking his 30 days vacation in his favorite city in the world. I asked him why he loves Korea so much, and he described Germany as Boring Heaven and Korea as Fun Hell. He'd been hitting the clubs every night, much to the chagrin of his Korean girlfriend. We talked Korea, girls, bitches, and an hour later we were getting our eat and drink on with four other hostelers.
The people I came from Busan with went home early but the gay Pole they brought, Marcel, and I were out to get dirty so we got a bunch of dirty soju, walked to the drunk park where all the Koreans and foreigners get their drunk on and told our stories. Here's the two best stories I got out of him. I tried to reproduce his light, accented voice as much as I could.
M: I'm really into hip-hop if you can't tell, I have so many Nikes- I'm a total sneakerhead. Anyway in Germany I was a B-boy, really into it until I broke my back.
F: You broke your back bboying?
M: Well I didn't break it actually, some Nazis did. I was walking out of a club, really wasted and some Nazis started harassing my Asian girlfriend, so I talked back to them. Well they beat the shit out of me, I told her to run and they kicked me down and beat me very badly. Now I take very strong painkillers every day, the kind that most people can't take more than twice a week. But I can't even sleep without them.
Marcel's other story was an observation about Korean cops. He was coming out of a club at 5 AM and saw a guy lying on the curb, no shirt, surrounded by vomit. Some cops saw him, got out of their car and just looked at him for a while. They bent down, gave him a double titty-twister, laughed and just walked away.
Wait no, that wasn't even his other story. Fuck, I'll tell his good story another time. It still won't be great, second-hand stories never are.
Man what can I saw about my first night in Hongdae? It's a club district and that's what we did. We hit up Cocoon, the biggest hip-hop/electro clubs in Hongdae. I hear this place has bikini nights in August. Cover was 20k for a 5k drink, and the floor was PACKED. Total basement fire hazard, but the music was much better than the bullshit in Busan clubs. I would have liked to see more girls, but that's anywhere.
The party didn't stop till sunrise, and we were at it again the next night. Cocoon was tight, but it wasn't my favorite club in Hongdae. Oh yeah, bonus points to these two for bringing New Orleans to Seoul.