Friday, June 07, 2013

Taking our Chances in Seoul

I confirmed I may have been made to live in a city area of 25.6 million people. The hustle, bustle, subways, energy....great fun.  I'm still trying to get a photo, but want to be sure to capture this. There is a light outside the gate where we walk that has lights that turn both RED and GREEN at the same time. No one seems to know why. We asked the police man and he said, "Just walk, fast." Stacia said it means "Take your chance." ::snort::

We took a break from guided tours today and branched out with friends. Rhojon (left below) was the admin coordinator on PWOC Asia Region Board 2. Her husband is assigned here.  She picked us up this a.m. and showed us how the subway systems work in Korea. We visited Namdaemun market where we picked up a few souvenirs and I tried the Korean version of siopao/nikuman. YES - I DID have meat and figured this would qualify as a "once in a lifetime chance" - just like the Kobe beef. ::snort::

I knew my eyes look bad...tired, red and I have this sty so I'm not wearing makeup....but gee whiz.... a "wude" gentleman mistook Rhojon for my eldest daughter. I would have had to be 9 years old when I had her. I said, "No, she's a friend."  He continued to dig his hole by telling me not to worry, "It's only to my eyes you look old." 

We shopped a bit and then headed over to a station to meet Pam and her kids, coming up from Camp Humphreys. Pam was the VP Conference Coordinator on Asia Region Board 2....she followed that by being the  first and only president of PWOC Korea Region. 

The Gherkins and Angels.....

Rhojon took us to a spot where the children could work on crafts and we could visit. What a great idea. It's the sort of spot we would not have found as tourists...and it was perfect. It gave the kids time to do something besides raging around Seoul. 

We also explored Insadong market. This gentleman demonstrated making a traditional candy from a block of honey.....and we bought some. We tried it tonight and no one was real impressed. In fact, Nolan remarked it was a lot like eating a hairball. I'm not sure how he'd know that...but it seems a fair assessment. ::snort:: 

These were a hit - and these men were doing a rip-roaring business on this hot day. Those are ice cream cones. Ice cream is piped into both ends of the cone. I resisted (I did a lot of that today - didn't buy a single bag either).

As we walked through Insdaong we were approached and asked if we'd answer some questions. I agreed. Then he asked if he could take a picture. Arielle was going to take it for him and he made clear he wanted the photo to be of him and Arielle. ::snort:: ::gasp::  ::hiccup:: This is not the first time this has happened here.

The kids voted Pizza Hut for dinner. Arielle and I are happy to have the veggies from Subway.... we sat by the waterfall again and enjoyed a relaxed dinner. The plan was to visit a pool and watch a movie after dinner. As we talked, however, and our blood sugars rose...our energy levels rose....and we decided we had time tonight to visit Itaewon for a gift for Michael and then to go on to up to Seoul Tower. We didn't find the shop so decided to bag it and find a taxi.  We really didn't know all that was involved in going to Seoul Tower and I'm very happy I took more won than I thought I'd need from the ATM.  We had a hard time getting a taxi. I finally just opened the door of one (they wouldn't look at us), told the kids to jump in and jumped in too. He took us to the "cable car building".  The Discover Seoul desk had told me earlier with as many as we have it would be the same price or cheaper to take taxis as it would be to take subways and buses. I was happy for the tip.

Arielle hates heights; she said she'd been to the Seattle Space Needle, San Antonio Tower, Tokyo Tower and wanted to do Seoul Tower.  We marvel at how well the Koreans do tourism. They have it down to a science. We had no idea there would be so MANY crowds... or that it would be considered the ideal date spot (still not sure we get that - it's CROWDED and a climb which it seems is best done in 6 - 9 inch heels and mini skirts).  We are glad we did go to the tower.

Window shows it's 8,000+KM to Seattle 

 And 9000+ Km to San Francisco

Just for Grandma and Grandpa T - 2,600+ Km to Manila
We walked around and enjoyed the view. My camera is woefully inadequate and I'm not sure how all these cell phones were getting great photos. Hmmph.

Then we began the long wait to get back on an elevator, followed by the wait to get on the cable car. All told it took a good 45 - 60 minutes.

Arielle doesn't like heights and is a wee bit claustrophobic. This is the  moment she realized there was one way down and no quick way to get away from these crowds. We asked. I assured all I was sure if there WERE an earthquake or fire they would find more ways for the crowds to exit....they just wanted us standing in front of various snack stores and trinket stores the longest amount of time. ::snort:: 

Choosing Joy!
©2013 D.R.G.
~Coram Deo~
Living all of life before the face of God...

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