Two Savages in Southeast Asia

Gangnam Redux

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A thousand spun threads
Twisting into each other
Weaving all of life

We awoke in our separate pods, hidden from the world by thick curtains and hiding from the world under cozy blankets. I got up a couple hours before Evan and Googled around, looking for things to occupy us during our few days before we meet up with our Couchsurfing host. I also learned that my sister and I are more similar than we seem; readers with decent memories may recall that I broke my left middle finger in a rope swing accident while canoeing a couple days before we started this trip. Well, it turns out that she broke her right middle finger in a rope swing accident while canoeing a couple days ago. Heh.

When Evan finally got up, we decided that today we ought to go to the Kimchee Museum. We headed that-a-way, but upon arrival were informed that it’s closed for construction. Heartbreak! Someone must go and tell us how it is; as far as I know you get to make kimchee during your visit!

Making our slow way towards Gangnam, we stumbled upon, what else, a UNESCO world heritage site. This one was the burial mounds of kings and queens from bygone dyansties, and there was a good deal of shady and beautiful park to stroll around. Some pathways were closed to tourists, as they had only been built for the spirits to walk. These mounds were a totally different animal from the ones we’d seen in the countryside of Jeju…

We rooted around in Gangnam for some hours thereafter, searching for a gift to give my dad (who loves Psy). Puzzlingly, the only item we found in our hours of searching that bore Psy was a pair of socks for children? We didn’t buy them, but we did actually learn a fair amount about Gangnam in the process. The song, Gangnam Style, is actually about how folks in that area all have plastic surgery and spend too much money, etc., etc., and we saw all the evidences of this: facelift clinics, “haberdasheries”, and excessive numbers of custom-tailored suit shops. A learning experience, if not a fruitful shopping one.

We paused for lunch, which included a dish we hadn’t had before and aren’t sure the name of. It was like a gravy soup, but not exactly creamy, that had sesame flavour and a lot of tofu in it. If anyone knows what this is, or can get us the recipe, please speak up! We had no luck getting a translation out of Google, but maybe my terrible description is enough.

We spent some time in the saddest board games cafe, torn between playing games we knew, games without rules, games with only German rules, games with only Korean rules, and games without all their pieces. We drank sad mango juice from a box. Then we paid too much money and left.

Back at our hostel, we caught up on blog posts and also made friends with some of the other guests. We all went out for dinner together: delicious Korean barbecue. There’s nothing like grilling your own meat at your own table.

After sharing a bottle of soju, it’s time for bed. Good night, friends!