Bundang and Kimchi

Seoul Travel Blog

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ah ha new camera
Alright so I've decided to quit being lazy and actually do something today..does this count? I haven;t been doing much else. Caught up on some episodes of the Daily Show and Family Guy. I also poked my nose around to see what my boy, Obama has been up to, as well as Secretary Clinton since she is only about 10 or 15 miles from me today. I thought about going to the Government district to see what I can see, but being a warm blooded kid from the southern US I decided to stay in today. I think the average temperature here today has been around 0 degrees Fahrenheit. That is just plain unpleasant for me. The only reason I left was to go get a hot, spicy, steamy bowl of Kimchi stew. Left there got a coffee and some donuts :) Not the Krispy Kreme kind, but the street 4 for 1000won ($0.
another journey
55) that are like the the ones you get at Chinese restaurants in the US, except much much bigger and better. Okay so today has been boring, but I just got back from the store with a couple of big beers and a bottle of soju. My host is having a guest over later, Rachael. She has just arrived from New Zealand and needs a proper introduction, so tonight I'm putting on my party pants :).

So this week...I packed some clothes in my backpack and headed out for a while. First I went to Itaewon, the dreaded military/foreigner district. I got there around lunch time so I found myself in a yummy Thai restaurant eating the spiciest meal I've had here. I then went down the street vendor alley and bought some little gifts for the family, as well as two pairs of gloves for myself.
another subway
Black and brown. Talked the lady down pretty good for those too, which  I kind of felt bad about because she couldn't have made much off of the deal, but anyways...they are very very warm, which has come in handy since I bought them. So I left there, boarded a train for Bundang and wondered around some more. Bundang is great. This is place that I tried so hard to land a job in, to which I was not accepted because the school in question was wary of my southern accent. But I digress. It is a beautiful town, clean air, well laid out streets, everything is in English as well as Korean (both Hangul and the Romanticized letters). The host I stayed with in Bundang had an actual shower, not the typical free-for-all in the bathroom like everywhere else. So after hangin around town for a while, I met Annie (Hee Young) and went out for some Dok Galbi, which is basically chicken and veggies, except you cook it yourself in a big pan with all the usual side items.
park in Bundang
I believe we had some beer as well. She is lots of fun to be around. She is studying conversation English at some institute in Bundang, so I was able to help her with some of the critical thinking questions she was assigned for homework, likewise she has been helping me a lot with my pronunciation of Korean, as well as teaching me some new key phrases. If it wasn't for her, my first night in Itaewon would have been a total disaster. Who would've thunk that I'd been a good-looking Korean girl who enjoys shooting pool and drinking Guinness :)

So we went to a couple of bars, shot some pool, shot the shit, had some laughs and said good-bye for the evening. I went to meet with another couchsurfing host, who was able to host me on short notice. What a world I tell ya!! The next day, I went on a little five my trek back up to the area where I met up with Annie.
hmmm, cute Korean girl, Guinness and pool :)
It was pretty chilly but well worth the hike. Annie was in school for a few hours more, so I ended meeting with Sue, another good-looking Korean friend. She, however, does not like pool or Guinness, but who cares. We ate some fajitas and had some terrible margaritas. Then we left and went bar hopping, where we met up with Annie and her teacher. The we all left and went to another bar where is was a total ex-pat watering hole, except this one was with with educated esl teachers, not dumbass military douche bags. And is was open mic night, so there was tons of good tunes...and some not so good tunes. I ended crashing on some guy's floor I met at the bar. He was a Korean my heritage, but was adopted at an early age and grew up somewhere in the Knoxville, Tennessee area. He was back in Korea teaching esl and he was reuniting with his biological parents.
I let her win though
He is truly a good person. When we got back, he busted out some crazy aged scotch and we sipped and chatted for a minute or two then hit the sack.

Next day I was back in Seoul. I landed in the Olympic park area and walked around an earthen fortress, got a few photos and headed on a educational journey to discover the mystical powers of.......KIMCHI!!! I provided pictures with as of the information you need to know about this amazing substance, so I won't get into any of that, except to say that it is in the craziest mall ever. Very retro, it took me forever to find this museum...walking through the "waterfall alley," "tropical lane," and all the little Korean women dressed in skimpy little outfits marketing some crap no one really needs.
But after an hour or so of massive sweating and getting lost a million times, I finally found it.

And now I'm back in the Guro digital neighborhood I have been residing in the better part of two weeks getting ready for a cold night of soju and Hite (beer). Oh yeah, and it snowed last night, which should be great for the snowboarding trip I am taking Sunday before I leave for Suwon :)....
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ah ha new camera
ah ha new camera
another journey
another journey
another subway
another subway
park in Bundang
park in Bundang
hmmm, cute Korean girl, Guinness a…
hmmm, cute Korean girl, Guinness …
I let her win though
I let her win though
Maxwell
Maxwell
standing in the middle of the river
standing in the middle of the river
...no not the Han River
...no not the Han River
artwork under bridge
artwork under bridge
this is the kind of stuff people m…
this is the kind of stuff people …
couldnt have said it better myself
couldn't have said it better myself
my Korean is not too good, but I b…
my Korean is not too good, but I …
looking forward to hiking those
looking forward to hiking those
what i thought would be the only p…
what i thought would be the only …
mini van....haha i crack myself up
mini van....haha i crack myself up
yes that is exactly what you think…
yes that is exactly what you thin…
...a full gym in the middle of the…
...a full gym in the middle of th…
gazebo
gazebo
grave sight
grave sight
yep, thats ice
yep, that's ice
Who you looking at
Who you looking at
ok so I think Americans and Korean…
ok so I think Americans and Korea…
Bundang
Bundang
Coex tower...inside is just an aqu…
Coex tower...inside is just an aq…
impromptu street music
impromptu street music
Kimchi...very good
Kimchi...very good
...and healthy
...and healthy
...really healthy
...really healthy
...
...
really...
really...
is there anything it doesnt do?
is there anything it doesn't do?
oh free sample mister
oh free sample mister
maybe you need a magnifying glass …
maybe you need a magnifying glass…
Olympic park
Olympic park
outside subway station where Ive …
outside subway station where I've…
young kid with no training wheels
young kid with no training wheels
old lady with training wheel...wha…
old lady with training wheel...wh…
Korean dogs and their clothes
Korean dogs and their clothes
damn skater punks
damn skater punks
another outdoor gym...what is the …
another outdoor gym...what is the…
the gym over there buddy
the gym over there buddy
ancient Korean method of beating b…
ancient Korean method of beating …
new Korean method of beating bored…
new Korean method of beating bore…
Seoul
photo by: chiyeh