Everyday is a kimchi day

Whenever I went abroad or traveling a bit further from our beloved Bolehland, there are always something new that I picked up or learned which at the end of the day enriching my knowledge and nurturing my experience. Some could be a very inspiring and mind boggling encounter , and some could be a not-to-be remembered one. No doubt about it. It just like a larvae coming out from the cocoon and having a taste of fresh air and come face to face with a new life.

During our recent trip to Korea I observed and experienced many interesting things. One of the thing I learned was whenever you want to buy something or anything from a shop, never never lay even a finger on the item for your viewing pleasure. Just point at the item and pay the money. Only then you will have your first ‘feeling’ on that item. When I ask the rationale behind this super hygienic behaviour, the tour guide told me that, Korean products are always of the highest quality. No thorough inspection needed and satisfaction guaranteed (Have not verified on the item that I bought yet). If you ‘ransack’ the items before you decide to buy them (just like our itchy hands normally do when going out for shopping), then the seller will stare at you like your mathematics teacher or even pinched you hand (that was exactly what happened to one of the ‘rombongan Cik Kiah’ member during one of their shopping spree). I think the Korean knows very well how dirty Malaysian hands can be!

Korean are generally quite short in their physical (and probably in other departments too:) as compared to us. But of late I see many of them are very tall, nice pointed nose, ideal features that can easily landed them a role as a model. I asked our tour tour guide (she is Korean) and she told me that those new breeds actually consumed the much-talk-about Koren ginseng since their childhood and some even going to the extend of injecting the saponin (active ingredient) into themselves. Did I say injecting? I thought silicon implant was the main culprit, but it was not.

One thing good about their establishment is that they know how to package entertainment industries and tourism as their national product, with good advertisement thrown in. One third of the trip was visiting the many scenic locations of popular TV dramas that were sold and aired in many foreign countries. For example, ‘Winter Sonata’ in Nami Island, ‘All In’ in Seopjikoji, Jeju Island, ‘The hourglass’ at Jeongdonjing beach (the train station closest tot he sea), ‘Stairway to Heaven’ at the theme parks in Seoul and many more that I can’t remember simply because I don’t watch any of them 🙂

And of course kimchi, the pickled vegetables that is a must in all the meals. Korean girls have to learn the art of making kimchi before they get married.

So having to travel abroad is all about invoking all your senses – the sight, the smell, the taste, the sound and the feel.

an nyung ha seyo!

The reminder is so loud and clear. Even with this packed strawberry!

Notice the look on the shopkeeper’s face when one of the uninitiated tourist is trying to reach for one of the souvenirs.

In Nami Island you can see these flags. The flag resemble the country that is airing or used to air the popular TV drama ‘Winter Sonata’.

Staple diet during the whole duration of the trip. Everyday is a kimchi day.

Vegetable steamboat with tofu. Kimchi is the red cabbage on a plate, the left-hand side of this photo.

The Korean are so obsessed with kimchi, they even have kimchi making class in most of the town. Portraying here was our kimchi students waiting eagerly the instruction from the masterchef to make their first kimchi.

Stall that sells tempura is a normal sight in the local market.

We have the opportunity to experience sleeping on the heated floor (ondol) in one of the hotels. I spent only ten minute getting myself comfortable under the blanket when my significant half called me from the other adjoining room for a more comfortable king size bed.

Rombongan Cik Kiah’ having their all-girls moment at The Everland theme park. These ladies especially the outgoing datin, really could not shut up their mouth and always making the trip full of laughter with their classical antics.

Tulips are also starting to bloom in the theme park.

The main attraction to this safari is actually a liger (lion mixed with tiger) but we were told that the liger was not available that time. This white tiger is one of the inhabitants in this safari.

Chocolate factory in Jeju Island. Notice the material used to build the factory are all made from the black stones which are abundant in the island.

Lovely Ginny, our local tourist guide. She is so sweet and trying her best to accommodate our request. One time, the datin requested to stray a bit from our itinerary (which is strictly a big NO especially to the bus driver as their movement is monitored closely through GPS from the HQ). But with Ginny and her charm managed to persuade the driver to drop ‘rombongan Cik Kiah’ at their preferred stopover. Seoul Hard Rock Cafe and Korean Silk outlets are among the place they sidetracked.

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