(The time stamp on the pictures are incorrect)
Once again, It's late at night and jet lag is the main cause for my waking nights. I'm actually kind of grateful for these quiet nights because I'm able to process the trip that I had and I'm able to or at least attempt to articulate the adventure I had into words. So with Daft Punk playing in the back, here is the largest entry in my mini series (There will be no interview Friday).
I arrived to stay with my family, and the one thing that should be noted is that my living quarter is cramp and I am given family chores (laundry, dishes, cleaning the bathroom, and the dog and its needs). I know, it's like being an indentured servants and in exchange for some vacation money, my family gets a servant.
I live in the downtown of Seoul (Capital of S. Korea) and it's this general area that is probably the better half in the city. While uptown is filled with the large malls and other commercial centers, downtown is the artsy cool side. There are tons of great local cafes and stores or boutiques. There are also great eating places near by (literally 2 minute walks from where I stayed) that are great for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Want some Belgium waffles hand made and fresh? How about some really (really) spicy curry for Lunch? A calzone and pizza for dinner for friends? All walking distances from my place.
I was on vacation, and I took advantage of that. I was walking from morning to night exploring the city and the efficient public transportation system really helped. For one, everything runs on clockwork (the subway station doesn't smell like a urinal) and things are made quicker by this thing called T-Money. It's basically a card that you can pre-load and refill with cash and you merely scan it over a scanner to get into a bus or subway or even some cabs.
Now that some generalities about how I got around, here are specifics.
With a camera in hand, I pretty much chose a direction and decided to walk, bus, take a subway in that general direction. I also looked towards my family, friends, and the internet to tell me interesting places to go ( I was the most independent I ever was on this trip so it was like my first time essentially).
(My adventure satchel...shut up, Indiana Jones had one)
(The dog I told you about, a walking, barking, pooping source of chores...sigh)
(On top of a bridge and loving it)
(Outside of private property...felt just like Solid Snake. Also, one of the very few housing ares in Seoul w/ actual houses) (Apartments are dominant in a city like Seoul)
(The elixir of life...no, but my favorite drink that I can only manage to buy in Korea...the world is cruel)
(I didn't mean for the flash to go off, the lady was totally scared....oops)
(What is this, a chance to show off your photography skills?)
(These 7-11 type stores can literally be found on every block...I'm not exaggerating, they are on EVERY BLOCK)
(Did somebody say scenery?)
(I had a weird Mirror's Edge flashback. They are constructing a mega theater 'cause Seoul is the Design Capital of 2010)
(In an effort to make the citizens healthy, public exercise stations such as these can be found in many parks)
(I'm in a pagoda, jealous?)
(Korea is a Forest, and I can freely use the words lush to describe the sights)
(A very good burger joint. Yes, it is that small inside as well. Also, U.S. troops are stationed in Seoul and are a very common sight)
(It's an alley....)
(The gates to a very private high school....super fancy) (Yes, we wear school uniforms)
(Modern looking bus stop)
(Remnants of the past....used for storage)
LOOK WHO CAME: