Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dead Kings

Yesterday was hellishly dull. I did everything I tend to put off until it becomes desperate in one day. There were errands to run, grocery shopping, laundry and cleaning--my bathroom And apartment. I really dislike cleaning for no reason (other than the fact that it needs to be done) though it isn't quite as bad when you are doing it for company's sake. Having an ipod follow me around is nice, though completely unnecessary in a studio apartment helps a little. Just a little. In any case, I rewarded my day of drudgery with an afternoon in town today. I went to the Seonjeongneung Royal Tombs (try to say That quickly) in Seoul. Seonjeongneung was recently nominated to become a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. It isn't official yet but apparently once a site is nominated, it's pretty much a done deal. The park was beautiful and it was neat to see the tombs though I wished there was more information available in English. Maybe if it actually becomes a World Heritage Site there will be English pamphlets or tours available. Salsa Boy and I mainly followed the pictures on the map, snapped pictures and people watched the scattered school groups (who watched us right back and giggled). Not only did I remember to bring my camera, I had a charged battery! Salsa Boy brought his camera too but his battery died 10 minutes into the expedition. I have to say, the new Canon batteries seem to last forever. Afterwards, I did the unthinkable--I went to Starbucks for a soy vanilla latte. Hey, I tried 5 different Korean coffee shops first, independent and chains and not ONE of them had soy milk. I wanted a latte, not a cup of black coffee. This is my weekend treat after drinking crappy coffee at work all week. Okay, picture time!


This is at the entrance to the park area. No idea what this building used to function as but the outside had the same traditional painting style that you see at Buddhist temples and monestaries.

The first tomb. The animal statues surround the mound but because of the restricted area that you can walk on, getting a perspective shot was a bit difficult.



This one Salsa Boy took. Pretty flowers, me, what's not to like?

16 comments:

Nancy K said...

I appreciate Salsa Boy's photos of you. It's great to talk to you, but a photo brings you closer somehow. Glad the weather cleared up enough for you to go to the tombs. Dad and I love places like that. Do you know how old they are?
In India all the major sites have guides who speak English hanging out trying to get customers. Often they are actually licensed by the state and quite good.

Salsa Boy said...

I can't believe my camera ran out of photos...

Salsa Boy: Let me borrow your camera
Alex: But it's my camera. It's new and mine, and I wanna use it.

grr... Still... gotta pretty good pic of you anyway...

It's funny the only guides there were, I think, volunteer teachers from schools who brought their kids. It was nice and tranquil though...

I think I'm going to carry soy milk with me where ever I go, so I can start using local coffee shops. I'm soooo sick of Starbucks...

When I die, I dmenad to buried in a tomb much lie the ones at Seonjeongneung. With statues of animals and all that...

Rachel said...

Love the photos and the commentary. Maybe some day you'll turn and take a picture of Salsa Boy. He sure does take good pictures of you. There is so much to be learned about past cultures at tombs, and cemeteries, that seems more alive than just going to a museum. Of course my all time favorite was my trip to Pompeii.

Alex said...

Pompeii was pretty much the coolest thing ever, agreed.

The tombs date back from the late 1400s.

Josh said...

YES! I AGREE WITH AUNT RACHEL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Picture of salsa boy please. very cool stuff anyway..... even if there was a picture of the midget\


p.s.- i think i lost my mind somewhere..... give me a call if you find it

fay said...

nice pictures, i don't know whcih is more exciting, though, cleaning an apartment for cleaning's sake or tramping around tombs, especially on what looks like a very dismal weather wise day. If there were no real guides, it is always "fun" to lurk behind groups who have someone who knows something to find out what it is you are looking at. I have had people do that to me when I was escorting guests around the Metropolitan museum in NY or Mystic Seaport.

cousin fred

Alex said...

Cousin Fred-I tagged along behind groups all through Europe, it's the best! However, as the only foreigners there tagging behind a Korean tour group doesn't really help much, considering how basic my Korean skills are. :-)

E said...

Looks as if your enjoying tons,
looking good. Pics are stunning
lol
love
long lost cousin
emuna

Alex said...

Yay for long lost cousins! I wish it had been a bit sunnier but then again, the grey skies and the grey stones make for interesting composition. How did you stumble across my blog?

Alex said...

Tell you people what. If Mom updates her blog MORE OFTEN, I will post a picture or two of Salsa Boy. HAHAHA. See I am holding you ransom Mommy Dearest! Apply familial pressure at will to the Mother Unit!

Josh said...

me likes your evil picture ransom!

fay said...

Err- how do you teach English if you don't speak Korean? Emuna's Dearest daddy forwarded your blog address after he stumbled upon it. The only surfing I get to do is on the net. now where do I find ransomed Mommy's blog?

fred

Alex said...

It's a full immersion English program, no Korean allowed. You learn very quickly that way, it's how I picked up French so quickly. That being said, I do know some basic Korean like "It hurts!" "Are you ok?" "Yes/No I am/not." "Yummy?" "Where is it?" "What is it?" "I don't understand" etc etc etc. There is also a bilingual supervisor for more serious issues that require translation. Most of the time though, you don't need it.

Mom's blog is: http://nancyksews.blogspot.com/
A very cute sewing/cooking/gardening/life blog.

fay said...

I understand- that ole' Israeli invention- it is Korea's English Ulpan. My brother, ztz'l, did the same at Brooklyn college years ag o in LATIN>!

BTW- how does one post comments on mom's blog?

Fred

Alex said...

errrr...the same way you post comments on my blog.

fay said...

AAAHHHRRRGGGHHA! (ancient male expression)

If one doesn't scroll down far enough on the right page, one does not see the box marked "add a comment"

I personaly thnk that some of these web stires,a ndblogsites should come with standard formatting. Strange how MS hasn't decided that for the industry, like they did everything else.

Thank you anyway

Shabbat Shalom Um'varach

fred

ps I have no idea why this records me as Fay, when on mom's blockg it records me as Fred L=- MACHINES!