Sunday, April 05, 2009

seoul korea: day5 korean folk village

this is such a yummy plate of nissin noodle. dry hot spicy. i ordered this the next day, after i see the couple eating them.

suwoi korean folk village, a very huge architectural place. in fact a lot of local and families just spend their weekend here.

they really make sure this place is filled with the local culture. old uncles really stay here and do their daily thing. their dedication amazes me. like seriously, does he need to really sow the seed? like we actually know he is faking it or not. but this makes the place really warm and cozy with their presence.

she is so cute.

it is just a short distance, i took a while to walk out there and back. i think the guy who took the photo for me cannot stop laughing.

this is the set where the series dang jae gum was filmed.

i happily dragged those uncles to take photo for me. i guessed i gave them the other tourist the idea. uncle freak out and quickly walked away mumbling some korean words. super funny.


this is where i got those small little cakes. this is a famous local bakery.

ox tongue, gosh yummy...

jinjinbang, the local hot bath.

more photos of day5 here.

who i met
cy: hey, where is the hot sauna
girl: i dont think they have it here.
cy: oh, so there only hot bath here.
girl: yah...
cy: are you local, you speak very well in english.
girl: yah, i did my high school in england. where are you from?

there goes my long explanation of singapore and malaysia. it was a long pleasant talk. she is a really sweet girl.

seoul korea: day4 dongdaemun and lotte world

i was pretty excited to see this packing at the convenient store. but after trying it, no way it can compete with the original fresh brewed coffee.

dondaemun, is filled with malls. few of those are like the bangkok platinum where you can bargain the price of things. the mall will be filled with small shops every floor ranging from clothes, shoes to bags. still it is too pricey for me to shop at these bargains area.

too my regrets, i did not try any of these.

my beloved cousin, esther whom provided me with the free accommodations and dinner.

this my friend is lottle world, the set which is most famous for the series stairways to heaven.

we bought the after 7pm ticket for W13000 (rm33.80), which i think is a really really good deal. there are loads of good rides, except that the weather is too cold. i didnt because the queue was extremely long and my cousin is not keen about it. i figured i better not since i might not be able to feel my legs after those rides, both from the cold and my fear.

night... this is when i tell you as usual, i hate my camera. i do not have good photos for it. lotte world, like most of our childhood memories will only be found in my mind and not on photos.

we were so excited to walk around, we forgotten to eat our dinner. later we were to cold to loiter around so we order room service. equally satisfied.

more photos of day4 here.

who i met
well i guess shopping doesnt allow much friendly conversations.

seoul korea: day3 namsan and myeon-dong

my lunch, nissin noodles. i just went in to one of this small korean restaurant near my hotel.

im suppose to take a bus from here to seoul tower, but then i took the wrong turn and stumbled into this very nice namsan architectural place. i like traveling alone, i have no fix itinerary to follow so im going in there.

ohh, look! there is this glass house next to it. meaning from the roof top you can lie down there to see stars at night. forgive me, i have a thing for glass house.

i can see that dude with a big slr struggling with the imperfection of my camera. "one more", he insisted.

this place reminds me of the edo-tokyo architectural museum. but this is a small version of it, im going to a very big one on my last day.

i always think that you only see flowers like this in the outskirt of korea. oh no... it is all over. but what i do not expect is my mickeymouse camera can take such a nice shot :)

if you do not believe me that the win is strong, you see for yourself, the whole tent fell apart.

it feels like you can see the tower from almost everywhere in town. im heading there next.

so i shall take yellow bus no2 and it should bring me right to the top of the hill. meantime let me show you the view of from the street. girls here can leave the house just wearing a thin stockings like this, oh wait the students here dont even need stockings.

oooh gosh, i got cheated. the bus dont bring me right to the doorstep of seoul tower. i actually need to climb this very steep hill. so now how, go back down with the bus or climb this??? it is so dark and i dont even see the end of it.

this funny fat korean dude is running left to right in front of me. he is panting like mad, making weird sounds like oooohh... aiyahhhh... i think he is trying to workout. very entertaining like some korean games show, hahah.. ohh... finally i see the tower. maybe i should call this dude to take a photo for me, i know he needed the excuse to stop and rest.

wahh, im finally up here. look at the nice beautiful road i conquered.

ladies and gentleman, "presenting to you seoul tower". this is where they recorded quite a few episodes of the famous series of "my lovely sam soon".

but you know what, i have no time to go in. so let's forget about going in since i can see the whole city view from out here. and i am taking the cable car down. hehe... nice. this place is seriously a perfect place for paktoh-ing. i like.

why the rush, yah because im meeting my cousin in town for dinner. shabu shabu time.

loads of meat...

and this is my favourite. some fish cake thing with melting cheese inside... aggghhh. i finished the whole plate of that.

myeon-dong shopping area to me is like the shibuya shopping area in tokyo. with loads of big brands like 3 floors of forever 21 but it is not cheaper than kl. my cousin said it is cheaper than singapore though.

and yes 3 floors of starbucks too.

more photos of day3 here.

who i met
so in the cable car, these two blokes were conversing very loudly in english. i cannot help but automatically started eavesdropping the whole conversation. after we come out of the cable car, the korean guy told his friend "it is only a 15 minutes walk down to myeon-dong". that really got my attention and i unashamedly approached him.
cy: hey, did i hear you say, you know the way down? can i follow you guys down?

fortunately i did, i dont think i can make my way down myself. so they introduced themselves and all. they know each other when studying in the states. woki (spelled like that i supposed) is playing tour guide to his friend jack (if i remember correctly) and his family. they even get free accommodation from him. that is nice. they also went to jeju island where i wish i have time to go. but this is the more dramatic part, jack is from malaysia and he stays in pj. what?? of all the place in the world. so my cousin spend the rest of the night teasing me saying this must be fate. whatever if he is cuter i will think of that as fate, probably cant even sleep thinking about it. but it is nice talking to them nevertheless.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

seoul korea: day2 cheonggyecheon river and insa-dong

1. cheonggyecheon river, dongdaemun station

a lot of ppl hangout in this place, just that probably it is a bit cold now. still i found a couple jumping across the river on these stones, taking photos and laughing all the way. there on cloud nine, it seems like love kept them warm. like how the movie shopaholic puts it, "love is like a butter melting on a hot toast" (warm)

i have to be in the photo right. so i ask that very lovely couple to take for me.

yes after the many attempts of trying to take a photo for myself. i come to conclusion that i do not have the talent of cam whoring, like anna. i gave up, my hand is freezing... i cannot feel the button anymore. so i just take the palace le.

one thing i found out, all asian countries - tokyo, hongkong, bangkok - we all have one thing in common: traffic jams.

so that you dont get confuse at the subway. just learn these two signs. yellow sign "way out" is to get out of the place. thereafter you have 6-8 exits, so if you do your prep and find out earlier exactly which exit is nearest to your destination, that will be good. you dont want to come out on the opposite of the road. the rest of the arrow is for transfer to another line. there are about 30 or more interchange and 8 subway lines. so there is no one way, just use a route that requires the less interchange. as for me, i use back the same few interchange so that i can close my eyes and still know which side to take. i have to say by the second to third day, i was already reading a book. it does mean ive got pretty good at it :)

2. insa-dong

i found mina, she is a korean church friend from malaysia. she went back for good half a year ago. she is my kind tour guide for the night.

this thing is hot and nice especially under such cold weather. RECOMMENDED!

according to mina, there are a few stores selling this thread looking sweet thingin, but this is the first shop here and known to be the best. i dont understand why they have screenshot of movies with them eating this sweet all over. does that provoke ppl to buy? hehe maybe.

this building has shops that sell a lot of handmade items. i think the price is quite reasonable especially things like pretty journals and all. accessories is a bit pricey when i compare it with bangkok, so i didnt get any.

in order for korea to be as romantic as portrayed in those korean movies, they have to have a lot of dreamy things like this. a piece of art for them to write their wishes. and this one below, translated by mina says: "by 14 february next year i want get attached"
*DISCLAIMER: i didnt write that.

she brought me to one this very authentic korean house for dinner. very nice ambience, thus very expensive meal as well. yes i mean very expensive for one platter of food. W80,000, like rm200 plus.

on our way back to the subway station, we saw a massive crowd surrounding a store. the queue looks like one of those jco doughtnuts queue (or longer). 30% storewide for all beauty products. as if their beauty products is not already 1/3 our price. of course i joined the craze.

more photos of day2 here.

who i met
usually in malaysia, lift puts us in a very weird position. we either look down to the ground or look up to the figures up there to check which floor we are to avoid striking eyes contact with anyone. somehow when im on holiday it seems like it is a place where conversation begins.
x: you are here for a holiday?
cy: yah...
x: nice. im here for work, i'll grab a quick breakfast and go. you enjoy your day.