The Fangirl Adventure Log

Slowly, Seoul….Slowly

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Ok, I admit that I have been a little out of whack since July 10 and I admit that I probably should be going gung ho here, here in Seoul lapping up all the sights and sounds.  I am, albeit at a slower pace.  I knew when I planned this trip that I was picking the time of the year where it most probably rains the most – but is kind of fitting for the task that was hand, right?

July 12, 2013

Discharge day came and went.  For those of us who spent the entire night at the West Gate, it was a two-day ordeal.  I am still trying to ease all of the emotions of those two days (and the days leading up to it, come to think of it) to a manageable level.  So instead of maybe taking in some sights, a couple of us Clouds decided to pay a visit to Rainy Entertainment.

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Our purpose that afternoon was to leave some gifts and letters for Rain. Isn’t that THE ultimate fangirl thing to do???  It seriously took us two hours to find Rainy but when we did we were relieved to have been able to drop off our things and ask the team manager there how Rain was doing.  She assured us he was doing good.  Good to hear.  We left our gifts (and our love) and decided we needed to make our way to Myeondong for what turned out to be a Rain blow out coupled with a side of K-pop.

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I am so going back to Myeongdong, even if between me and the gals from Spain, we cleared out the shelf filled with Rain items!  (I am serious….we cleaned them out!)  I am sure I will find more if I give Myeondong more of my loving attention!!  Myeondong is known for its shopping.  I admittedly compare everything to Commercial Street in Bangalore, India but Commercial Street literally has NOTHING on the markets of Seoul.  I will likely visit Myeondong at night just to take in the sounds, sights and lights!!  I think one of the things I am truly adoring about Seoul is the penchant for the ‘WOW’ factor that goes into just about everything. There is just this in-your-face quality that I am so digging out here.  Seoul gave us Rain, after all and you really cannot get much bigger than what he has accomplished over his 10+ year career and he is not nearly finished!!

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Now admittedly, shopping the streets of Myeondong would have been so much easier had it not been raining.  It has been raining daily since discharge day.  I guess it is kind of fitting….that, and the fact that it is apparently the rainy season here in Seoul at present.  But nevermind, we managed and still enjoyed our outing that day.  We capped it off with some Korean food.  Me and bibimbap get along very well! 🙂

July 13, 2013

On my own today, I decided I should get to the South Gate as I had previously planned!  This also gave me the opportunity to take in the sights of the oldest market in Seoul:  Namdaemun Market.  Once again it was raining which always poses a problem when trying to take pictures while holding an umbrella!  Delicate maneuvering, I tell ya!

Straight from the internet:

Namdaemun, officially known as the Sungnyemun (literally Gate of Exalted Ceremonies), is one of the Eight Gates in the Fortress Wall in Seoul, South Korea, which surrounded the city in the Joseon Dynasty.

The gate, dating back to the 14th century, is a historic pagoda-style gateway, and is designated as the first National Treasure of South Korea. It was once one of the three major gateways through Seoul’s city walls which had a stone circuit of 18.2 kilometres (11.3 mi) and stood up to 6.1 metres (20 ft) high. It was first built in the last year of King Taejo of Joseon’s reign in 1398, and rebuilt in 1447, during the 29th year of King Sejong the Great of Joseon’s reign.

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Adjacent to the Gate is the expansive and duly overwhelming Namdaemun Market.  Yes, yes, yes, I happened to find some more Rain treasures but I think I have hit my limit now!  My suitcase will most assuredly be way over the appropriate weight and I haven’t even begun to pick up souvenirs for family and friends!!!  The streets and alleyways of Namdaemun are lined with just about anything you can think of….anything.  I saw octopus, I saw ginseng root floating in glass jars, I saw K-pop cushion covers!!!  You name it, it’s probably there!  I apologize for the lackluster pictures.  Rainy day at the market.

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Later that day I emerged from Exit 11 of the Gangnam Station and was bowled over.  I liken whatever this major thoroughfare was to Chicago’s Michigan Avenue only way bigger and way bolder!!  My senses were overwhelmed and the people….where on earth did all of those people come from??  Ok, so it was Saturday night and date night and all – but we moved in a wave, a sea – at times I felt as if I were just floating being carried by the ebb of people around me.  It was kind of cool.

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Totally intrigued with this area of Gangnam and will go back!  Really, there is so much to see and do here.  The rain puts a damper on things sometimes but I still have been enjoying my visit very much.  Coming into my final week so let’s see how much I can cram into my remaining days!

More Seoul on the horizon……

Author: Michele

Travel junkie, veganista, and purveyor of random acts of kindness. I happen to really adore G.O of MBLAQ and his presence here is very strong. That about sums me up!

7 thoughts on “Slowly, Seoul….Slowly

  1. Lol! I can only imagine the amount of Rain merchandise you’ve picked up! XD Are you going to show us a photo of your exploding suitcase??

    Great that you’re easing into exploring more places – yay that you’re taking us with you! And I love bibimbap too! ;D

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    • OmO…seriously I went into Myeondong tonight and came back with about 10 more pounds of stuff. I am just going to resolve myself to the fact that the suitcase will be overweight and I will have to pay. I got a special treasure tonight….getting ready to write about it now! ❤

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      • I love all of these photos of the street and the people. You always get the best photos. Remember the photo in India of the guy on the bike with a hundred of chickens tied to his back????? or the guy with the white cab and trying to tie your luggage on top. You get the best shots.

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  2. Enjoying your musings very much.

    Terri :-}

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  3. Hi Michele!

    I am absolutely intrigued by your Seoul adventures and am more than blown away at what you went through to get your priceless pictures of the fabulous Rain!! I am so thrilled you had such incredible experiences but at the same time feel your heavy heart when this will come to an end but only for now. It’s got my wheels churning and brain running on the possibility that you might be the catalyst to really get this on my map sooner rather than later. Reading your stories is urging me not to overlook Seoul any longer!

    Rosemarie

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    • Oh Roshni, thanks!! It has been quite an adventure. And as I come into my last week here, I am already trying to figure out ways to come back!! I haven’t even scratched the surface of what I need to explore here! Yes, Rain was my catalyst to visit and I am so happy I was at his discharge. It was a tough day on one hand and a wonderfully joyous one on the other because he completed his service. Please do keep your eye on him because he is a fabulous performer and should he make his way to LA for a show, do consider going to see him. You will see me there, that’s for sure!!! 🙂
      Thank you for reading the blog and for the support, I truly appreciate it! ♥

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