Seoul Day 2

Continued from Seoul Day 1.

Everything is great about our hotel, but I will say the bed is just a bit too small. We kept on bumping into each other in the middle of the night(no, not that kind of bumping) and waking each other up. Oh, the humanity!

I’ve kept this unopened in my luggage since Tibet. RL finally got tired of it and opened so that I’d be forced to eat it. She’s the reason why I am fat. I am faultless.

The thing with better air quality is that there isn’t as much smog to protect you for the UV rays. Oh the ironies of life. We are going to check out the sights around our part of town on foot today.

Oddly enough, there’s a bearing and motor brushes store right across from our hotel.

Seoul in the day time. We love it here.

The Chinese are the plumpest Asians of all the countries that we’ve visited. Korea is pretty skinny…but not for long if KK has made it here.

Seriously, cosmetic and skin products stores EVERYWHERE!

I guess this is Dunkin Donuts’ version of the Cronut?

Blue, how we’ve missed you in the sky.

A row of Chinese doing some sort of exercise on the street. Speaking of Chinese, I actually hear Mandarin quite a bit just walking around. The girl who worked at the convenience store was even from China. Chinese influence is indeed very strong here in South Korea.

These stores are everywhere. There is also Paris Croissant stores.

Light just turned to walk. Essentially no one jaywalks here.

Gwanghwamun Gate far in the distance.

It’s lunch time and we are hungry. Some food before we see some sights.

I hope we are not walking into a completely empty restaurant.

OK, good. There’s plenty of people here.

As to be expected, the food was just ok.

They didn’t have any of the fancy foods that they had shown on their pictures. Maybe that’s for dinner?

It’s lunch, and the green bottles of soju are already making an appearance. They’ve definitely got a good drinking culture here.

OK, let’s go!

Gwanghwamun close up.

One of the “guards” standing at the front of the gate. He’s got a fake beard on…which leads to the question. If he was supposed to be a throwback Korean with a beard, why can’t the modern Koreans grow a beard?

Past the Gwanghwamun Gate leads to the Gyeongbokgung Palace.

KL points.

RL likes this place over the Forbidden City. She doesn’t know what she’s talking about…

I miss my dog.

There were these girls(guessing Russians) here with these inappropriate and tastelessly short booty shorts on, high heels and mid-drifts. I am making fun of them here.

It’s actually kind of hot today. Should have worn shorts.



KL points.

Where we are headed to next. Next to that Pagoda is the Korean Folk Museum.

The Chinese zodiacs.

I usually find folk museums boring…this was no exception.

In and out in about 5 minutes. Meh.

Now we continue onto an area around Bukchon Street where there are a lot of cafes and coffee shops.

Also lots of galleries and museums in this area. Fancy.

This is where we decided on for some coffee to boost the morale. I am getting tired.

Coffee shops are ubiquitous here in Seoul, and we are not just talking about the big chains.

Also got some red bean shaved ice dessert to help with the heat. Shaved ice is huge over here. They put condensed milk in it and top it with all kinds of things. Yum!

I needed this break from the heat. I was not having it.

While checking our email using the cafe’s wifi, we got an email from our wedding photographer telling us that our photos are ready!!! Awesome. We spent some time just flipping over all the photos that were uploaded to an online album. We are very pleased with how they turned out! Looking at our wedding photos(or the coffee) gave us a second wind.

One of the many Chimek(chicken and beer) restaurants all around town. My friend MT, who lives in Seoul, says this is a must eat when visiting. I don’t have to be convinced to eat fried chicken and beer. Definitely eating this before leaving Seoul.

This area reminds me much of Japan.

A giant tub of cabbage just sitting out on the sidewalk.

Ahead is another palace, Changdeokgung. Yes, all the names are similar and get confusing.

Them rain clouds are a brewing in the distance, we better hurry. I like this palace better, it feels more zen.

Better get out of here before we get rained on.

RL decided that she wants to do some shopping at Uniqlo while I head back to the hotel to blog.

After some minor damage, RL came back and it’s now time to do laundry. Score another point for South Korea and our hotel. We asked the front desk where we can do some laundry, and they said that they have one in the hotel and it’s only $5 to use. Score.

It’s actually a full sized washer with a full sized real dryer that actually works!! This is how doing laundry should be and not that $81 laundry in China bull shit!

Errr….Shit!! We started the load and water comes streaming out of the drawer where you load the detergent. When we asked for help, the maintenance man came and actually spoke Mandarin, because he’s, well, Chinese. Anyhow, apparently we were supposed to throw the powder detergent straight into the tub instead of in the detergent drawer. Either way, he said that it’ll be alright…we’ll keep our fingers crossed.

RL goes to use the microwave in our hotel and the front desk guy helps her with the instructions in Korean. Then…he tells us that microwaves are not good for your health. Seriously, it’s a non-ionizing radiation, it’s fine. I wonder why so many Asian countries have such an ignorant misunderstanding of microwaves? What if I were to inform them also that there are other non-ionizing radiation all around us at all times from radios, tv, etc.? Mind blown, eh.

Our laundry turned out just fine. It was such a pleasure that we will probably do another load before we leave Seoul.

Two minutes from our hotel is the Cheonggyecheon, an inner city stream with walking paths next to it.

Found an entrance into the stream.

Guess this is sort of like Town Lake Trail, but concrete.

The rock step crossings. I wonder how many drunks have fallen in after a good night of fun.

OK, that’s that. We are looking for some dinner.

This is supposed to be Dongdaemun market…it’s supposed to be happening spot but seems to be shut for the night….How disappointing.

I guess we’ll have to go somewhere else to eat.

Or not!!! We walked a little farther and saw this! This part of Dongdaemun market is open and hopping!

Tons of street stalls here. There are sections where stall after stall all sold the same exact food. I wonder how these stalls are run. The foods all look so similar that I suspect much, if not all came from the same distributors. Are the stall runners proprietors? Or are they just employees? How do you know which one to pick if they all sold the same things?

Alright, this one will do. We picked this one based partly on it’s located in a busy area and that it had medium amounts of people sitting down already eating. First, some rice.

Then all the pickled and fresh vegetables.

A side of really bacon pork.

We had to drink what seemed to be unfiltered rice wine. It was sweet and went down really easily. This was a really fun experience, but the food wasn’t what we were too used to and the boiled pork was a little tough to stomach.

OK, time to head home.

Look at all those boxes of meds stacked at this pharmacy.

Giant vat of bones to make stock, I assume.

Dropped by a convenience store. Loacker wafers is cheaper here than in SE Asia.

The street stalls right by our hotel are once again open tonight.

Time for sleep.

Sleep can wait after this night cap.

To be continued at Seoul Day 3.

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