South Korea’s Day in the Sun: Mudfest 2013

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South Korea’s biggest international event, Mudfest, recently took place in the small coastal city of Boryeong.  Despite South Korea being consistently pummeled by rain during a true-to-form monsoon season, the sun managed to breakthrough and find South Korea on the one day when everyone decided to go to the beach – yes!!!

I’ve been to Mudfest three times and this Mudfest was undoubtedly the most impressive due to the beautiful weather.  A golden sun, a rare blue-skied Saturday, and an incredible firework show highlighted the trip.  Add a bunch of beautiful foreign and native girls in bikinis with some alcohol and a splat of mud, and you have an international cocktail for a perfect weekend.

I’d like to use Mudfest as an example of how keeping an open mind makes life much more enjoyable in Korea.  Someone’s experience at Mudfest is a lot like living in Korea – people either really enjoy their time in Korea or they can’t wait to get back “home.” Just like anything else in life,  if you choose to be positive and embrace your experience, you will have an amazing time.  If you choose to remain negative and cynical, you’ll hate not just South Korea and events like Mudfest, but you’ll probably hate anywhere else you live.  Life is what we make it and our attitudes typically define our experiences.

I recently posted 11 Reasons Why You Should Go to Mudfest and I shared the article with Korea Bridge.  The article was lighthearted and fun, and I tried to encourage readers to break out of their habitual weekends and give Mudfest one shot.  While I’m used to miserable people tearing apart my articles on Reddit, the comments on Korea Bridge were unusually depressing to me.  Let me share them for you:


Re: 11 Reasons to go to Boryeong Mudfest in 2013

You forgot, herpes


Re: 11 Reasons to go to Boryeong Mudfest in 2013

Herpes, HAHAHAHAHA. I could not get paid enough to wallow in mud like a bunch of drunk pigs. If that is the best experiance that weekend, the whole country should be depressed…

Re: 11 Reasons to go to Boryeong Mudfest in 2013

The Mud Festival is the quintessential obnoxious foreigner event of the year.

Besides the lack of clever commentary and adequate spelling, these comments are poisoned with pessimism and gross generalizations.  To say that Mudfest is an obnoxious foreigner event when hundreds of Koreans make the trip with their families every year is both disgusting and insulting to Korea.  To also compare a mud festival, which many different countries host, to wallowing in the mud like pigs speaks volumes more about the writer of the comment than the event itself.  Plainly speaking, these people are miserable and it’s a shame they have the right to describe South Korea to other people.  If girls in bikinis, handsome Korean men with abs, mud-fights, dancing, fireworks, and being with hundred of people who are all smiling doesn’t make a grown man or woman happy, nothing will.

On the other hand, let me show you the difference of someone who approaches Korea with an open mind and a great attitude.  My friend Laura wrote this post on her blog and she did a beautiful job describing her first experience at Mudfest.  In fact, she did such a great job I believe reading her description of the event will provide you with a better understanding of Mudfest than anything I could write.

Read Laura’s account here:  You’ve Got A Little Mud. . . Just There.

Laura perfectly demonstrates the extreme differences between people with great attitudes and bad attitudes.  Everyone who follows Kimchibytes is well aware that I criticize Korea – I do not think it is a haven for sightseeing and I’m unsure if it deserves the international acclaim it continually receives from abroad.  That doesn’t mean, however, that this is not an amazing place to live.  Despite horrid weather and gray skies, Korea has this ability to continually show you something new every day.  It’s not something I can explain, but I feel people who live here will just be nodding their heads in agreement.  There are amazing places to visit, food to devour, culture to observe, people to meet, and plenty of things to do.  I feel this way about most countries, but I live in Korea so why not enjoy what Korea has to offer?  The only difference between those who enjoy their time in Korea and those who don’t is their attitudes (with the exception of bad employment situations).

In case you missed my points: Mudfest was amazing and have a good attitude while living in Korea.

I have one more thing to say.

In 11 Reasons to go to Mudfest, I warned you about the Korean Photographers!!

Don’t say I didn’t tell you so!



Special Thanks to Paige Stewart for the use of her Photography.








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