I did some more cool things this week:
|Hey look! A crossbow turret! Where did I go?|
I had the day off on Monday for Children's Day, and Tuesday was Buddha's birthday. This long weekend thing doesn't normally happen, because the date of Buddha's birthday changes every year as it's based on the lunar calendar. So I was pretty lucky. Wanting to continue my adventures exploring, we decided to head outside of Seoul to Suwon, which is like 40 minutes to the south.
Actually, I told a couple of my co workers what I was doing over break and they were like 'Wait, why are you going there? It's just a fortress." Haha. I think they forget that things they've seen a lot are still new novelties to me. We don't have fortresses with palaces inside of them in Buffalo!
|We stopped at Dunkin and I just thought|
these were adoooorable
In Suwon, there's a place called Hwaseong Fortress. There's a big walled fortress that was built in the Joseon dynasty and nowadays there are a lot of businesses and houses inside. It's pretty interesting to see the old fortress and gates with the modern things. Hwaseong Fortress is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It was built in 1794-96 and was restored in 1975.
|One of the entrances to the fortress|
|One of the 4 gates of the fortress|
Inside the fortess is a palace called Hwaseong Haenggung. It was built by King Jeongjo as a Detached Palace (Hwaseong Haenggung just means Hwaseong Detached Palace). It was built in 1794-96. Restoration began in 1996 and it reopened in 2003.
This palace is often used for filming historical Korean dramas, such as one I'm watching now called Rooftop Prince. It's probably easier to film here than in Seoul.
|I thought this would be a really special tree.|
But turns out it was just really old.
|This is King Jeongjo|
|The gazebo for the king to rest and study|
|we couldn't go outside the walls, even though|
it looked cool
|different hanboks of the women in the palace|
After grabbing some bubble tea, we decided to walk around some of the wall of the fortress. which started out pretty intensely, as it's quite steep.
|bell of filial piety|
|pretty path outside of one of the 'secret|
gates' of the palace
|Distances to lots of places. New York is only|
a few thousand kilometers away.
|palace from above!|
|the apartment buildings had cool drawings|
It was a great trip, and I certainly got a lot of exercise. We didn't walk around the whole fortress because it's pretty big, but we saw a variety of features, like the different sentry posts, command posts, gates and towers.
|This is a random insert of an ad I see all over|
the palce. This is G Dragon from Big Bang,
and he's advertising for LTE
You may be wondering why I posted that, but it's an example of clever wordplay . It took me admittedly longer than it should have to figure out why it says 8llow me. I'd passed the ad a couple of times, and heard my students mention the song, which says "follow follow me," but the first time I saw the ad, I didn't really notice it. The second or third time, I noticed the words and my brain of course went, "Eight llow me? What? That doesn't look like an Fo either...? why...?" And then I stared at it, realized that I was in Korea, and thought for .2 seconds. You see, Korea has 2 number systems. In the first, Korean based system, 8 is pronounced yeo-deol. No dice there. But in the Chinese based Sino Korean, 8 is pronounced, wait for it, 'pahl.' Korean doesn't have an F sound, so it's usually replaced with a p sound.
There you have it folks, pahl-llow me.
On Tuesday, Sarah and I headed back to Jogyesa temple, since she hadn't seen the lanterns.
|We of course stopped for delicious|
ddeokbokki and twi-gim (various friedfoods)
|Hanging prayers on the lanterns|
It was quite crowded and there were a few ceremonies going on.
|Lots of hanboks out and about|
|We got pins! It says something about celebrating|
Buddha's birthday and hoping for peace and
prosperity? I think?
|view from the side|
It was a short but busy week this week, because I have my open class on Monday (tomorrow, ugh) for an evaluation for the renewal of my contract. I'm quite nervous, but I think I will be ok! Wish me luck and send me good vibes!
|This guy greets me on the way to work|
|I swear, every couple of weeks, there is a big|
group of people on my way to school with banners
and the like. they always take a bunch of pictures
and leave. I never know why.
Unfortunately, either all of the walking has finally caught up with me, or I messed up my foot somehow, but it's been moderately achy when I'm walking for long periods of time (it doesn't hurt all the time, or when I stand on it or anything. Just midway through my walk to school, the outside of my foot, near my ankle but not quite that high, starts hurting). So on Friday after school, I decided I was just going to rest my foot and see if RICE helped it out. I didn't actually have any ice in my apartment tho (my freezer is tiiiiiny anyway), so I got creative:
|Ice cream and mozz stix. Points for creativity?|
On Saturday, I met up with Lauren and Sarah for coffee and then we went to see Moulin Rouge, which is oddly playing in some places in Seoul for probably no reason. I haven't ever seen that movie on a big screen, and it was just freaking awesome! I forget how much I looooooove that movie.
|Lee Min Ho is currently the model for A|
Twosome Place. Yessss
We grabbed dinner
|They serve this as a side dish. Not sure|
what they call it. It's basically a boiling
|Then we got dessert|
|then we headed to Hongdae for some drinks. It was a very|
chill, lovely day
In other news, the cafe near my house has an incredibly adorable puppy, and he perked up today and apparently really wanted attention, cause he started being adorable and walked right up to Sarah and I when we passed by.
I'm missing my family a lot today, as it's 2 important days. Mother's Day and my sister's graduation. I wish I could be there to give you both big hugs, but that will sadly have to wait. I'm sending virtual hugs and lots of love from Seoul!
|Love you mamma! Ti voglio bene!|
|Last time she graduated, I had just|
returned from Italy. SO PROUD BELLA!
Sending lots of love to you all! Wish me luck in my open class! I hope I won't need it, but it can't hurt!
Bringing back some B1A4 (so named for their blood types) because this is one of my go-to walking to work songs. Kpop songs are usually really energetic, so they help make the walk to school (25-30 minutes) go quickly, as I can jam out on the way.