Thursday, November 18, 2010

Namdaemun Market: a colorful shopper's paradise.

Today is a huge testing day for grade 3 high school students in South Korea. So, how does this affect me? There are high school students testing at the middle school down the block from my elementary school. To keep the neighborhood quiet, my school had the day off. Like I said, huge testing day.

I needed this day off. Lately I've been feeling pretty run down and, of course, there is always someone there to remind me: "you look tired." So, I slept in until 9, laid in bed until 11, drank an unhealthy, but satisying amount of coffee until 1 and then finally took off to explore Namdaemun Market in Seoul. Namdaemun Market is one of the oldest (dating back to 1414) and largest traditional markets in the country.

Talk about a treat! You can find anything and everything within this maze of about a dozen blocks. You've got your clothes, food, candy, jewlery, paper, music, toys, etc. etc. etc. The catch? You music weave through herds of people traveling at all different speeds, many ready to use any means to get you out of their way. If you're lucky, you can trail behind a highly coordinated native going at just the right pace. And don't forget about the motorcycles rushing up from behind. Cars are not allowed on the streets, so these rather fast fellas are constantly on the go, delivering materials to all of the market street stands. So very much worth the experience. Oh yeah, and worth the prices! For girls, there are tables with enormous stacks of sweaters (5,000W), shirts (5,000W) and jackets (10,000W) all throughout. For everyone, most of the tastiest treats cost just 1,000W.

And tomorrow my BFF/vfaceypeupsexy Shannon comes to visit from Dague. We will be going to Seoul for our second dose of the Flaming Lips. It will be an Oregon reunion with another Oregonian friend teaching in Jeonju joining us. Hip, hip, HOOORAY!

Shannon and I, Sasquatch Music Festival 2008
The Flaming Lips, Sasquatch Musical Festival 2008

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