Jillian R.
What started out as a trip down to the Korean traditional market turned out to be quite a pleasant adventure.

Let me explain, it took forever to convince Eric to ride the public bus with me. He likes hopping into a taxi and get to a specific destination. Since I started riding the bus to work, I noticed a few markets along the way which I thought might be selling more than 3-4 types of vegetables (
seriously!).


So we hopped on the bus and headed to Seomun Market. We found nothing of interest there besides stalls after stalls selling sprigs of garlic and one fish stall.
By then Eric was already whining and complaining about my bad choice of dragging him along on one of my bus riding adventure. 

Then we passed this:-




And I thought it was quite a funny name to call a street. Or maybe it's a street where people sell socks. But I wasn't prepared for what came next.



The 1-2 kilometer long street was lined up with sock shop after sock shop, huddled beside one another - all stocked up to their ceilings with stacks and stacks of socks. See the items on display behind me? Uh huh. That is just one store. By now I know you're expecting me to write about the hundreds of varieties of socks I've seen.

But you'd be wrong.

Because there really were only a few kinds, nothing trendy, mostly gray. And the brand Carlo Rossi (probably a copy of the REAL Carlo Rossi brand) comes up a lot. The street was quiet, like a deserted cowboy town in those old western movies; and it was a Saturday afternoon. Most of the shopkeepers watched TV and some sat dozing off comfortably in their portable armchairs in the middle of their stores.

Me: Oh my god, oh my god (shakes head, laughs in between). How do you make a choice on who to buy from?
Eric: I don't know, Jillian.
Me: But...but how? They'll starve to death.
Eric: They won't starve! Maybe they do wholesale and delivering and such. Y'know.
Me: But how does a business person choose? It's all the same! Look (points at a random shop)!
Eric: Maybe if they have an uncle there, I don't know!
Me: They're all gonna starve!

Now, let's look at some pictures we took today.

One funny thing about Korea is the seemingly normal signs have an interesting twist to it.

For example, look at these Handicap signs:-


See how the person looks like he's sliding off the wheelchair? Sometimes you see normal ones, but mostly, they always look like they're sliding off. It makes me laugh every time.



"S-Oil" is a very common brand of petrol/gasoline in Korea. Just what you need for your vehicle; SOIL!

We then headed to the heart of downtown. Earlier today, Korea played against Greece in the World Cup. People were excited and the streets were extremely crowded.

Since ageing past 21-22, I stopped looking forward to hanging out where there's a crowd. So we mosied along towards the quieter end of the street. Here's one of the reasons I tolerate Korea so well;


...you never run out of brands to choose from for make up and accessories. Lined up side by side on this busy street is The Face Shop, Nature Republic, Tony Moly, Etude House and a few other Korean house brands, all at competitive prices. Then across the street sits The Body Shop. See, you could never run out of body butter here!

For some reason. this "Shrilling Chicken" squeak toy is popular here. It scares me a little and I still refuse to touch it.


Eric wanted to buy me this;



...a bow which no normal person would wear besides during a costume party. Oh wait, girls here do wear them. We saw one today; a girl with a big, red bow, just like this one.

I will end this entry on a good note, here's an absolutely beautiful park right in the middle of the busy city.


I call this part of the park The Forest of No Return. Look at the canopy of trees, it just looks magical. 

Or maybe I just like stories of fairies, pixies and gnomes.
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