Through the power of 'followfollow' and the 'www' three intrepid individuals who are based in the Korean Peninsula made contact and a sash bash was proposed, organized and carried out during November, 2010
Kim Jung Il (from the South) and Master Shake (from the North) made initial contact and then contacted Dannats (also South) and the date was fixed for 13th November.
Just days before the sash bash Master Shake made it in from Pyongyang on undisclosed official business, Dannats got back from disclosed official business in the Middle East whilst Kim Jung Il held the fort in his bear cave some 2 hours south of Seoul.
On the day of the meet the brothers converged on the three alleys bar in the tourist area of Seoul, Itaewon, not at high noon, but at 3pm because it was easier to remember three alley's at 3. There was a plan to watch the football in a sports bar but the 9 hour time difference from the UK was a challenge, when supping started at 3. The 3 alleys does a pint of draft lager beer for 3,000 won, or 165 British pennies and it's called Old Blue - another reason to meet at the three alleys!
During this three hour mini sesh Master Shake kindly presented Kim Jung Il and Dannats with the uniform for the day, a Pyongyang 'Chosun Few' Rangers shirt which was just the dab for the ritual sash bash to follow (follow). Much hilarity ensued. We were introduced to some of the other expatriates Itaewon had to offer, including an old man who wore sunglasses to play pool and whose hair had a boot polish sheen, and an English teacher, whose headwear would have given you the impression that he was a member of the Seoul Sherlock Holmes Appreciation Society (if such a thing exists).
After a huge meal on raw meat (Bears love meat) in a Brazilian all you can eat restaurant, and as in nature, it is in a bear's nature to leave his marker in opposition territory, so it was decided to hit the Wolfhound bar, an Irish 'gimmick' bar across the main Itaewon road. Now not all would do this but this troupe did - they got behind the bar, gave the (fake) sellik tap the "pyure vikki", got the photos and then blasted out the sash - marching out of the bar and down the stairs with this admirable lilt behind them. Build my gallows was aired and the place was cleansed. Happy days.
Six hours had now passed and the group headed to the Hollywood Sports Bar for a game of pool and to prepare for the football. This time there was no O.B. so CASS was the call, 9,000 won (a fiver) for a 2 litre jug, at those prices it is criminal not to drink it.
After lots of poor pool playing the ball got stuck and the pool table got lifted, lots of wee wedges fell out, oops… The bar man was not a happy teddy but by that time not a jot was cared. Darkness was falling internally and after some passing abuse at some clueless yank with a 'fields' t-shirt on - and 8 hours after meeting, the bears made their merry way out of Itaewon to hibernate for a while. The fiti on the telly was only man-ure and it was awfy blurred anyway.
From Belfast and Glasgow via Abu Dhabi, Pyongyang and Yongin, to Itaewon in Seoul, a right good sash bash was had by all.
The next meet has been pencilled in for March/April 2011, and will include bears who could not make it last time, NikoBelic and KingCarlos. If you are ever in the area drop us a PM - Kim Jung Il, Master Shake or / and Dannats and lets try and build up a new centre of support for the Rangers.
Really, there's nothing like an Old Blue Sash Bash and it's just great to be a Bear - and now our comradery even straddles the most heavily armed and fortified border on the planet!