Thursday, October 12, 2006

Gyeongbokgung, National Folk Museum and Work

This morning a strange thing happened, some Americans looking for a public bath house wandered in, of course this is not a public bath house. I latter met up with them on the English language tour at Gyeongbokgung Palace and they admitted that it turned out to be across the street from where they are staying.

On the learning Korean front, I now no longer see really long words in Korean as a hopless jumble of letters, and if there is Korean and English together I can work out where the syllables start and end by working out the Korean.

I went after a lazy start to the morning to Gyeongbokgung Palace and caught up with the English tour that had started 10 minutes before. We spend the whole morning walking at a fair pace through the palace. I think it is a little like the Forbidden Palace in Beijing. As it is only buildings it is not as interesting as if it were full of people. However we did have bus loads of primary school kids who just loved to say hello. I have learned how to say hello in Korean - An-nyong ha-se-yo. I have set me self some exercises to increase the speed of learning. One special part of the tour was we were able to visit the archaeological dig site, which is normally only open to Korean Tours.

After this I visited the National Folk Museum. It is a small but well set up establishment. This man who turned out to be from DaLian, wanted to travel around the museum with me. However, after a while I was able to get him to pester some other person.

Having had enough of the historical monuments, I decided to head into work, which I had been planning to do tomorrow. When I looked at the address, I thought, wait a minute, I know where that is! It turns out it is quite close to where I am staying and I had already walked past about three times. So I had an expensive lunch (note to self: remember to check the prices), I headed off to work. It was easy to find, and the staff there were very friendly. They gave me some advice on places to visit and invited me out to dinner when I return. They also gave me the pronunciation of my Chinese name (yewenyi) in Korean so 葉文意 becomes - 엽문의or Yup moon eui. I am harping on, but Yap is actually pronounced Yup in Hokkien and this continues the strangeness that the Sino-Korean used here seems to at times have more in common with Hokkien and Cantonese than Mandarin.

After this I wandered the commercial markets on the way to the Eastern Great Gate (DongDaeMun).

Click here for the photos. (I am being tired and lazy.)

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