Vacation to Seoul South Korea – Day 1

We left snowy Detroit on Delta Airline just a little behind schedule. Powder snow had caused just enough trouble to force the plane to need de-icing. Our 12:30 p.m. departure left about a half hour late. The jet was about 80% full. Lori and I shared 3 seats–1 for me and 2 for her to sleep.

The food was exceptional for airline food. We had 3 meals (chicken, a sandwich, and eggs) over the course of the 14 hour flight. Each seat had its own TV screen with on-demand movies, TV, and games.  I watched ‘Wall Street-Money Never Sleeps’ and ‘Flipped’. ‘Wall Street’ was a good update to the classic movie with Gordon Gecko back after spending time in prison. ‘Flipped’ is a Rob Reiner film about adolescence in love in the early 1960’s–2 thumbs up.

There was also a flight monitor that showed the path of the jet. I was surprised to see Hudson Bay and the Northwest Territories behind us! The North Pole was not marked, but I think we flew over it, then down through Russia and China, a detour around North Korea, then into Seoul. I got up every 3-4 hours to stretch and I drank lots of water–a long flight hint that worked well for me. Beer and wine were complimentary, but I went for the water.

Landed in Seoul, followed the well-marked signs in English, made it through customs, and met Chris at the baggage claim. The 3 of us hitched a cab and went to the Hotel Sky–about a 15 minute ride for about $20. This will be home for the next 12 days. I think we are in Incheon–that is the city where the airport is located. The room is small by American standards, but quite comfortable. We have two beds–Chris is staying with us–and a large bathroom. The key fob needs to be inserted into a slot on the wall to turn on the electricity. Two lights are controlled by a wall switch, the others by the TV remote control. Three pairs of slippers awaited us at the door. Lori’s fit, Chris and I had to use our own.

We went out for Korean Barbeque and ordered Pig Jowls–they were delicious. We sat at a table–we chose not to sit on the floor. We cooked our own meat in a BBQ pit in the middle of our table. They gave us about a dozen bowls of condiments to add to our meal. Everything was turned into a sandwich, except there was no bread, we used leaf lettuce instead. We pounded a bottle of Soju–the Korean alcolholic beverage of choice–and retired to our hotel. Total cost, about $20.

It is January and the weather is cold, like Michigan. There is snow on the ground, but apparently no one owns a shovel. The entryways of businesses are clear, but the sidewalks are packed down from foot traffic. The curb line in the business district is full of snow. Most every building is lined with huge neon signs. A few words are in English, but the majority is Korean. Thank goodness for pictures in the windows.  GS25 is the convenience store on the corner. GS stands for Gas Station, but there are no pumps. The inventory was mostly beverages,  snack foods, and underwear–interesting combination.

They have about 60 channels of television. The selections are dominated by music videos and interactive Korean reality shows. There are a few American shows, plus talk, news, sports, drama, movies, and gaming channels. Frontal nudity above the waist is common, below the waist–front or rear–is pixeled out.

I slept pretty good on a very firm mattress. The water was very hot and the pressure was excellent. So far, a very good experience.

I have noticed that virtually all of the women are very pretty, stylish, and wear nice shoes. The men have been well-dressed and have been accommodating, kind, and patient. I have not seen any children, 0-17 years old, except on the plane. Those toddlers were extremely well-tended to by their parents and did not make a fuss during the long flight.

It is 8:00 a.m. and there is virtually no traffic in our business district and I have only seen a few people walking on the street. We will be touring the area with no immediate definite plan.

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Published in: on January 25, 2011 at 6:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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