Thursday, December 2, 2010

Fall into Korea

Unfortunately, its December.  Time flies by and I have no idea sometimes how fast it goes.  However, there's always something to do and somewhere to be every week in Korea.

Jjimjilbang (찜질방)
So, these are a godsend really.  The concept?  Its a public gender segregated bathhouse, but the kicker: get yourself naked with everyone else and chill out in the various saunas and spas.  Quite recently, the awesomely awesome show Bored to Death, featured a New York jjimjilbang in its episode as Jonathon must find a Korean woman- it made me quite proud although I have no idea why. Its a slightly weird concept for foreigners, but after your first time, you're addicted!  Multiple pools with varied temperatures and dry and wet sauna's to drain all your toxins.  Its a bit of an adjustment to get used to walking around naked with other naked Koreans.  I heard that Koreans usually stare at the foreigners, but I had to say, it didn't happen as much as I thought.  They are quite the experience, and I am somewhat addicted, come winter time and I'm sure to hit these bad boy's every week!

Woobang Tower Land
The amusement park developed around the tower that reminds me of a much smaller CN Tower.  This tower is 312 metres high, where the CN Tower is 553.3 metres AND you can extreme skyfly from the Woobang Tower!  This was my birthday present to myself.  While the amusement park is nothing big, there were a few rides that certainly took me for a ride (for once!).  The roller coasters were really nothing special, and while my friends kept dropping like flies as we kept going on the rides, it was the last couple of rides that felt like they took days of my life.
The Can Can: You sit in the seat and as it spins you around you flip up and down and eventually go upside down... having done this twice in a row, I can honestly claim it to be an awesome ride!  
I'm the red blur!
Tag A Disco: The concept of this ride, you hold on tight and make sure you don't get flung out of your seat.  There's no seatbelts or any kind of safety mechanism to keep you held down on this ride.  You just hold on tight and hope you don't get bounced off.  The ride revolves around in a circle and then starts bouncing up and down.  At one point I seriously thought I was getting flung off this thing but no matter what I couldn't stop giggling the entire time!  Needless to say, I've found my new favourite ride!
That's me hoping I don't get knocked off
DVD Bang (DVD방)
The concepts of these are very simple.  You rent a movie and you get a place to watch it.  The room comes fully equipped with a couch, heating pad, blanket, surround sound and a projector screen.  Now, if you're a Korean couple and you wanted some "alone" time, but you both live with your parents, where else are you going to get your freak on?  I would assume it'd be these places, especially when you get the pull out couch and heating pad!  Nonetheless, when you're bored and/or tired and you want a couple of hours of rest, its not a bad place!

Yes, you heard correctly!  Korea to  me, is not all about drinking, partying, getting paid and travelling, its also about getting to hang out with Korean kids and acting like a kid!  To set the record straight, orphanage's here do not quite mean the same as they do back home.  Its located in a school and its more for kids to stay when their parents either don't have the time or can't afford to look after them.  They still get to see their kids on the weekend and such, so its not all a negative experience.  My friend Corinne had been volunteering with the orphanage for a while and I was more than happy to give up 2 hours of my day to hang out with kids where I didn't have to worry about correcting their English and not acting like a fool around them.  There were about 6 boys and we arm wrestled, chicken leg fought, played baduk and a pog-like game.  When they got ahold of my camera I ended up with a gazillion videos of them dancing and making faces, and a million more pictures (some of them are quite the photographers!), and the next thing I knew, time was up!  I wish I could do more of this.  It makes me miss my little cousins back home and playing games with them, and even though none of them knew English and we didn't know Korean, we still managed to have a good ole time causing trouble and creating mischief in the orphange.

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