Wednesday, July 17, 2013

A day in Jeju-si.

Recently I took a day trip into the city and did some shopping in addition to visiting the doctor for a routine checkup.

Normally trips to the city aren't nearly worth the time and effort of writing about, but in a foreign country and for my first visit it is.

From out in Seongsan I caught the bus to the airport. It's only an hours drive and with the first bus leaving at 10:30 I didn't make it there much before noon. I didn't know what all I would run into that day and figured I'd better get some cash so I headed into the airport to find an atm. Turns out you don't have to go very far into the airport in order to find one. In fact, you barely actually make it into the airport.

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Case in point. The atm machines (4 in total) were in between the two sets of customary doors leading in to the airport. There's nothing like trying to make a transaction with people trying to get past you with luggage carts and push wagons because you are literally standing in the doorway and therefore, blocking their way. But on the upside, apparently identity theft from atm machines is not an issue here....

After a couple failed attempts I finally figured the machine out and withdrew my cash and headed out into town. Jeju-si is split up into neighborhoods very similar to someplace like Chicago only on a much smaller scale. And there is no subway system; only taxis and buses. I chose the even cheaper route and opted for walking. I had previously written down the street names I needed to be on the lookout for and headed off down what I hoped was the right street. Turns out I was right when a helpful lady sweeping the sidewalk pointed in the direction I was heading when I asked where the name of the neighborhood I was going was located.

While I walked I enjoyed looking at all the various foliage and signage. Boy was this entertaining.

I'll take you on a little journey with some of the pictures I took.

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The streets were quite nice and the plants were beautiful. What you can't see in the picture above is the extremely, and I mean extremely loud cicadas. Wow! I wished I had earplugs!

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This lovely dragon greeted me along the walk. I'm not sure what I'm being greeted to but hopefully something good :)

I was always on the lookout for street signs in order to not miss the ones I wanted when I spotted this sign below. I sure wish I'd had time for a detour because the name of the street is certainly intriguing!


















As I got further away from the airport and more into town the signs started becoming cause for stopping, chuckling, and picture taking. Here are a few I saw that you might also get a laugh from.



















I'm not sure what to think of the name of this restaurant. Do you get a fresh start at life? Is all life here fresh? What does that mean? It's also only for VIPs apparently. Not just anyone can eat a fresh life???



I saw this sign from a ways off and couldn't quite read it for the trees, but as I got closer and I figured it out it definitely made me laugh. If I go here is a bodyfriend available for purchase? Do I learn how to be a bodyfriend? Is the guy on the window the bodyfriend and I get to meet him and he becomes my bodyfriend if I go buy whatever it is I'm buying there? Awesome :)


















Ah yes, and as I walk through a market for a drink I spy a label that makes me backtrack and pull out my camera. No, I didn't get a chance to talk with the black soybeans so I don't know why they're frustrated but maybe it's because they're stuck in a sealed bag, or maybe because they are all squished together, or maybe because no one has bought them, or maybe because they wish they were another kind of bean. Who knows!?!?!

Oh, and I also noticed that the ever popular makeup up brand Mary Kay hasn't failed to find its way into the Korean market...

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No, I did not go shopping there.

I did go shopping though and found this fascinating label.

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I have no idea how they can claim this but apparently this juicer is silent. Not quiet, but silent. Oh really????

After shopping much of the early afternoon I wanted some peace and quite, or as much as I could get in the middle of Nohyung-dong, Jeju-si. So I headed to a shaded park bench and shot this self video.




I also laid down for a short respite from the heat and sunshine and constant walking.

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Then off I trotted to the docs office (if you want more details on that they are in the previous post) for a checkup. Afterwards I decided I was hungry and wanted some fruit so I chose a local chain called the Coffee Bene. 

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Free wifi and a blueberry smoothie later I continued my shopping spree and headed to some new stores. One of them, unbeknownst to me, contained on the 5th floor, a ToysRUs. When I learned this I was already there so I decided to walk around and I found the Lego section!

Here are pictures of the very cool Lego display they had!

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Pretty amazing huh?!

After all the shopping and walking and doctors and more shopping and more walking I was exhausted and ready to head back home. 

On the way in you'll remember I was greeted with a welcoming dragon; well on the way back...

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