Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Seoul - Summary Of Day 7

One of the famous landmark of the city - N Seoul Tower
on top of Namsan Hill.
  • As I was really exhausted from the previous day, I woke up so late this morning that when I got myself ready, it was already almost noon. Stopped by one of the shop nearby which sells Korean bento to have my simple lunch, chicken mayonnaise with rice before taking the subway to the first destination of the day - Seoul World Cup Stadium.
  • It was quite a long journey and while I was inside the subway, one guy came into the coach and he was promoting some plastic strips which is used to clear stuck pipe lines. Something which I have never seen happening in Japan. Another thing I notice is that there are people selling stuff like decorations and jewelery along the pathway inside the subway station; and I thought it only happens in developing country like Malaysia.
  • Reached the World Cup Stadium station and as soon as I exited the station, the stadium was already right in front of me. Was awed by that sight and I stood still there for a few seconds, motionless.
  • Went to the information counter to ask if I could enter the stadium but he couldn't speak any English nor Japanese, not even a single word. All I heard was that the kept pointing to another section of the stadium while saying "mite, mite". That means "see, see" in Japanese, but I have no idea whatsoever about what he was telling me. I then walked towards the direction he pointed to me and I finally came to the entrance for the stadium tour.
  • Spend almost three hours inside this stadium, which hosted one of the semi final match between South Korea and Germany during the 2002 FIFA World Cup tournament. The guard asked me if I'm a Thai when I was at the touchline taking a few shots of the field and stadium. Now, I'm beginning to wonder if I poses a face which is similar to so many similarities - Japanese, Korean, Thai. Next up, people might mistaken me as a Senegalese. Lets just wait and see. In fact, that guard allowed me to step onto the field to have my picture taken as I stood on the ground which has seen players like Oliver Kahn and Michael Ballack played on the same ground more than six years ago.
  • Visitors are also allowed to enter the substitutions benches, players dressing rooms, VIP rooms and interview room among others. A Korean guy who speak fluent English and was in charge of the visual room turned on the thirty-minute video highlighting the 2002 World Cup for me although it was not the supposed viewing time after I made a request. Sat inside the rather huge room alone to watch it all to myself. It was indeed a wonderful experience for getting such a rare opportunity to visit such place. In only two days, I have been to two stadiums which have hosted two of the world's biggest sporting events - the Olympics and the football World Cup.
  • The World Cup Park is located just next to the stadium and I hiked up 291 steps of wooden staircase up to the hill in which Haneul Park is situated. Nothing much up there the place was full with leafless plants and trees and it was still early spring. The wind was blowing so strong that I had difficulties walking on the open area. Saw a few windmill up the hill as well. It was a great place to relax our mind from the hustle and bustle of the city. Saw quite a number of people walking and jogging up the hill even though it was so freaking cold.
  • The plan of the day was changed again since it was getting late already. I decided to go to N Seoul Tower after postponing it for so many days. On my way there, stopped at a convenience store to grab a Korean onigiri and a box of biscuit to fill my stomach as I had early lunch. Took the shuttle bus up Namsan Hill where N Seoul Tower is located; just like KL Tower is on top of Bukit Nanas.
  • Met three Japanese students who are from Kyoto University when we were helping each other to take pictures at the observatory deck. The moment I heard their university's name, I was impressed already since it is one of the top university in Japan. Didn't get a perfect view of the sunset due to the cloudy sky, but the night view of Seoul was definitely something to cheer about. It would be so much better if baby is here together with me; by then we could be on top of Eiffel Tower, who knows?
  • Just like what I did some time ago when I was at Hokkaido last summer, I got myself two postcards and I sent them at the post box placed just next to the souvenir shop. Guess who will be the receiver of those two postcards.
  • The wind was blowing so strong when I went up the open-air viewing deck and it was super cold as well. Didn't spend much time there as I was a little bit tired already, so I walked down the slope to board the shuttle bus to the subway station. However, the people kept coming to go up the tower even though it was past eight already.
  • After almost a week in South Korea, I can finally distinguish between the locals and the Japanese. Most of the time, when I see someone who overdress themselves, then they will most probably be Japanese because Koreans style themselves in a much more simple way than the Japanese.
  • When I wanna get someone to help me take my picture, I noticed that instead of saying "cheese" or "chiizu" among the Japanese, the Koreans will say "kimchi". Haha, isn't that too cute? So, I thought why don't we Malaysians come out with something which we can related to our culture too so that we can use it when we are taking pictures. One of the first word I thought to use is "karipap"; which means, when you are posing, you will say "ka-ri-pap!". Haha, I know it's lame. Besides, you will close your mouth when you say "...pap", so I guess that will not be a good choice. Anyone with a better idea, perhaps?
  • Oh another cool thing about the transportation here, besides the fact that they are so much cheaper than in Japan, is that when you exit from the subway and take a connecting bus within a certain period of time (thirty minutes, if I'm not wrong), they will not charge you the bus fare. I think this system is used in New Zealand as well.
  • Reached Anam station by nine and walked to Heaven 1 (the better name for "kedai muntah") to have my dinner but it was closed already. Stopped by another stall to have my dinner which I don't know the name, but it was some fried stuff and they pour the chilly gravy on top. Baby was offline already when I was back and I didn't get to see her for two straight nights already. Made this update and will plan for tomorrow after this, like usual. Bed time will follow after that.


Looi said...

lol! calvin, i'm wondering how u look will look like, when you say "karipap" instead of "kimchi o cheese" when taking pic....

How bout say rojak?hahahaha!!!

=chuan guan= said...

kimchi kimchi..nice choice of word they use..although is kind =="

Kae Vin said...

laksa? nasi lemak? durian? lol

and u indeed look like a thai XD

mg said...

my postcard!!! T______________T

go up menara kl first / klcc skybridge =P

calvin said...

@ looi:
very simple, just say "karipap" the next time you are taking pictures =D

and i guess rojak is not a bad choice =)

calvin said...

@ =chuan guan=:
i know. when i first heard they use that word, i was like "haha! wtf, why so lame one!"

calvin said...

@ specialhuman:
laksa is better than nasi lemak 'coz nasi lemak is a bit too long.

thai your head. i know you are trying to refer me to those thai ducks =.=

why are you teasing me every day-lah? no wonder people are saying i'm your lover =.=

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
haha, klcc sky bridge is not romantic one. at least kl tower is much better. but eiffel tower also is a must ^^