Sunday, March 27, 2011

Korea in Jun 2010

This is an accidental business trip, to Korea! I had an operation prior to the flight date. If I had procrastinated the operation, I'm probably not in the best condition for travel. Am glad I did, with a private hospital and an efficient and kind doctor. All is well when I fly, just that I have to do my dressings myself! It's not too tough, but if it is infection, the open wound is a no joke.

And here I fly!~ on 14 Jun, Monday morning! Incheon!

The room~

We checked in Sheraton Incheon, which is a short drive from the airport (15mins) and the client's place (<5 mins).

The room is nicely furnished, but for the price we paid, it surely have to live up to its name.

The view from room!~ A nice view of a developing Incheon!

The 3 men and myself gathered for dinner. We decided to stroll around in search of food in the nice 20 deg C weather!

We walk past around and this small eatery around a small corner caught our attention. We've problems communicating with them, but some of the patrons translated for us.

We've got beef, beef marinated with honey and pork! The beef is to die for! And they do the bbq-ing. We merely sit and wait to be served! Their beer wasn't especially nice, but good enough. Their side dishes are overwhelming! In variety and in taste! After such a hearty dinner, the bill came up to be only SGD10 per person! Something you can only get there!

We adjourned to deserts shortly and chanced upon Baskin Robbins! Its my first try. I didn't fall in love with this in my first attempt, though I subsequently did during my second trip!

On Tuesday, we decided to head out to the town after our meeting in Day 1 when we left early after our agenda was over. We took the courage to take train to Seoul. I was an unexpected ride of 1.5 hours to reach Myeongdong in Seoul. We were famished by then. However, it is a district I am weak in - Skincare. And while the men are searching for food,
I am intently looking for which shop I am going to conquer! While we ordered food and am waiting to being served, I dropped by Laneige and I've bagged 3 bags full! Though more than half were not mine, the men were shocked at the swift 'attack' I can make. Eventually, by the time they finished the food, I am not back yet and they have to send a representative to find me. I am so
exhilarated that I didn't feel I am hungry. I did eat, but my mind is on the stuff I got, and the free luggage I got for getting so much! I got a pink pokka dot luggage, which eventually, in order to ship it back, they used it to contain tools and DHL back to office. And now, this mighty cute luggage
at my room, containing old clothes, awaiting to go for a shop trip, which it hasn't had any opportunity to. :)

It was a fun experience. My 1st time in Myeongdong. And I knew I love it. And I did went back SEVERAL times after that, and SEVERAL times in my subsequent trips back to Korea.

On the 2nd day of the meeting (Wednesday), we had a wonderful feast with the group, including CEOs of various companies, people of various cultures. It was a really nice experience. And my first experience with Soju! But with sufficient training back in hostel days, Soju did not kill me as badly as it did to my other colleagues! I survived Korean drinking! And raw beef is heavenly!!

On Thursday, the guys are due to return home on the afternoon flight while I continue my journey to explore Seoul. I extended the trip till Sunday!

The guys bought mainly souvenirs which include t-shirts from the World Cup which Korea is playing.

And some food, i.e Seaweed, Ginseng powder, for their family, friends and colleagues!

Note: I didn't bully them by asking them to carry the stuff. These are all their purchases. I didn't want to get anything since I am off to Seoul later on.

We over-estimate the time and left the place late, reaching the hotel with an angry cab driver who had been waiting for them for over 30 mins! While they are off to Incheon Airport, I am off to Seoul.
The train station nearest to the hotel is called University of Incheon station. The university is nearby, though we did not see a huge flow of traffic at this station.

And my destinated station is Jongno-3-ga. It takes about 1.5 hrs, with 2 changes to transit.

I did a grave mistake, which cost me the handle of my luggage! I put my laptop inside the luggage. It was way too heavy and it gave way at my first transit point. There goes my luggage and I need to survive the rest of my trip with that luggage. -.-''''

I reached Seoul Hostel. Its a small homestay hotel, good enough for budget travellers. Priced at about 40,000won per night, which is SGD45 per night. It could have been cheaper if I hadn't book it this last minute! I had to take a double room. A single room would have been cheaper. The room is generally nice with clean amenities.

After setting down in the hotel for a while, I set off to my favourite place - Myeong-dong!

I love this place! It is young, fun, with lots of pushcarts! Pushcarts of clothes, accessories, food, etc.

It is seriously my favourite shopping place in Korea. (I didn't like Dongdaemun)

The streets of Myeong-dong

And this very night, Korea is playing a match in World Cup! And most retailers are too busy watching it on their mobile device. Boohoo!

Everyone is glued to the television sets watching the match.

And so, this became my dinner!!!

But I didn't mind it at all. Look at what I have got from my shopping buys!!

Though some of which are not mine, most of which are. =.='''

Friday was spend walking around and meeting a church friend for Lotte World.

I went Myeong-dong again, and this is what I found!

Haha! It is very pricey! I took a cup of Milk Tea for lunch. It is 4,500won (~SGD 5).

And well, the quality is so-so. (Especially so when KOI has won a big part of me!)

In the afternoon, I meet my church friend - Jean to Lotte World. She was having her exchange program in an University in Busan. It as ended and her bf is coming to Seoul for grad trip with a couple of graduating students.

So old folks like me joined them for Lotte World! How to go to theme park alone right?

<- So this the group of young people I joined.

They welcomed me warmly and I enjoyed their companionship totally!

We took the tickets for after 4 and it was cheaper than the normal priced tix!

There is parade shows, but am not quite fascinated by it. All in all, it was an enjoyable day out!

On Saturday, having no plans, I join the youngsters again for Insadong!

We went to a tea house. It serves a very wide variety of tea but serves only 1 dish.

So this is what we got - rice box with kim chi, eggs and luncheon meet. And upon getting this box, we will need to close the lid and shake to mix!

It taste nice!

We went for a short walk along this stretch of old historical lane. After that, I proceed to meeting my colleague from the Korea branch for dinner.

And we had this much of food!
I had my last shopping at Myeong-dong (again)

And Sunday I am off to home!

Good bye Seoul hostel! (Though I came back within 2 months)

No comments: