Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Jim, Shauna, Greg & Kristie Visit Seoul

One week after returning from Texas, we were treated to a visit by two of my brothers and their wives.  Jim. Shauna, Greg and Kristie flew into Seoul on Wednesday, April 6 and departed the following week.  It worked out nicely that those first two days were holidays for Bob.  On Thursday morning, when everyone was ready to explore, we drove an hour northwest where the Donggureung royal tomb cluster of 17 Joseon era Kings and Queens are buried.  This drawing illustrates the layout of a royal tomb.  (Photo taken from Cultural Heritage Administration Brochure.)

Royal Tomb Layout Korea
It was a beautiful spring day, and many school groups and women were enjoying the sights and picnicking at the park.  True to character, as my family was being introduced to their first Korean Cultural Heritage Site, someone was heard referring to the double mound burial site as the "Double D's"!  I guess exposure to culture is not always a refining process! 

On the way home we enjoyed “donkkaseu”, which is a Korean version of the Japanese tonkatsu, or breaded pork cutlet.  Everyone had fun grinding their sesame seeds to add to the dipping sauce (tastes like A1 steak sauce); but did not enjoy the lukewarm "barley" water, which is often served in Korean restaurants.

We stopped for ice cream - yes, that is corn ice cream Greg is eating - as we walked past the Museum of Art on our way to Deoksu Palace to dress up in "Hanbok" and watch the changing of the guard ceremony.


A short stroll from the City Hall area took us to Namdaemum (south) gate and market.  Pigs feet anyone?  Don't ask me why it is that when I get around my brothers, that competitive drive compels me to do horrible things like eat one of those nasty silkworm larvae with Greg - who claimed he thought the disgusting snack was somewhat tasty!  YUCK!

Oh, but that was only the beginning of the evening, and Myeongdong held many more "tasty" street foods to sample! After getting a feel for the Myeongdong vibe, Jim started the food challenge by ordering some "rice-cake" and sausage filled corn-dogs. Not so bad . . . but then he went for the octopus filled "meatballs".  Eeewww, they were filled with boney cartilage and rubbery chunks of "mutt" (or so it seemed) surrounded with a pastey white goo.  Bob must have been hungry, because he managed to ingest a couple of gross "mutt-balls".  Things got a little more tame with the fried "tornado potato", Krispy Kreme donuts and egg muffins (not pictured).  Finally, it was the grilled baby octopus that sent us home for some "real" food.


 Don't expect a photo of me - I already conquered digesting the live baby octopus when Dave and Melita came for a visit!

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