Saturday, November 1, 2008

"Big Size!" Clothing Shopping Trip to Itaewon

This past Saturday Julianne and I went to Itaewon in Seoul to go clothing shopping.

Julianne was tired Saturday morning so we hit the Starbucks next to the Chuncheon bus terminal.

It's a little pricey for breakfast . . .

Julianne got a Mocha Frappucino . . .

Nom . . . ("Yum")

You can buy roasted beans there . . . I'm not a coffee drinker so I didn't know . . .

I spent my time playing with the small camera we got for when we don't want to take our big SLR's around with us on trips.

Julianne spent her time playing with the camera too--as seen in this shot. Let it never be said that I don't poke fun at myself . . . lol.

It takes about 90 minutes by bus to get to Seoul from Chuncheon . . .

On the bus I started saying, "I should have brought my camera" (Canon Digital Kiss X SLR) over and over as I saw the trees and the fall leaves and colors covering the mountainsides . . . argh!

I killed time on the bus by taking pics of anything and everything.

Julianne's "What are you doing/Are you mad?"-look . . . very entertaining . . . lol.

These totem pole guys are just outside of Seoul and I keep trying to get a clean shot of them--not this time . . .

I brought my big headphones with me. I don't care how I look--I NEED HIGH FIDELITY SOUND!!!

Julianne snapped a shot of the Seoul riverscape . . . we both liked the tiny van. I've stood behind one of these before and I literally take up 3/4 of the width of the van--definitely not made for foreign bodies.

We took a taxi from the bus terminal to Itaewon. Julianne was very "entertained" by the ride.

After several close calls, breaks being moderately slammed, and general Indy-500 style driving I took this pic . . . after nearly four years in Korea my heart rate wasn't even slightly elevated. Julianne's . . . well, let's just say that she stopped looking out the front of the taxi . . . lol.

Ice . . . cool as an ice-cube.

Going through one of the many tunnels that run through some of the small mountains in and around Seoul.

The Hamilton Hotel is the major landmark every foreign person uses when meeting others in Itaewon.

As we were shopping for clothes that would fit us we kept an eye out for signs that had the word "Big" on them.

If you're a larger person in Korea you've likely experienced Koreans on the sidewalks who try to get you to go into the stores. They usually look you up and down, and then say, "BIG SIZE! BIG SIZE INSIDE! YOU BIG SIZE! GO INSIDE!" Nice . . . at least they're trying to be helpful.

We saw this little cutey while walking around looking for other clothing stores with "BIG SIZE!" stuff . . .

This place is new and only opened a few weeks ago. There was a lot of nice clothing in there and Julianne found quite a few things from blue jeans to sweaters.

When facing the Hamilton Hotel from the opposite side of the street turn left.

Then walk about down the street until you see Elysia above you.

Turn right and look across the street and you'll see this,

Cross the street and find the door that is below and to the LEFT of the sign. Ignore the confusing arrow on the sign, it will get you lost.

Inside the door and on your right you'll find another sign and some stairs. Go upstairs and you'll find . . .

. . . this . . .

Oh yeah, be prepared to use the "changing room" in the back that is in reality the store's stock room. There is no door, and no privacy. The woman who runs the store will say, "Excuse me," and then walk back to do something or get you another size. Shopping for clothes in Korea is NOT the same as in North America unless you're in a department store.

Later, while taking a break in Burger King I saw this sign . . . funny.

Then I saw this t-shirt . . . I LOVE THIS SHIRT!!! LOL . . .

It was a nice day . . .

Walking down the street Julianne and I came across this piece of art . . . I asked the guys sitting at the table behind it for permission before taking this pic.

This is seriously the nicest custom bike I've seen in Korea.

Further down the street I saw another Harley Davidson. Not as nice as the first but not bad either. There were several other Harleys parked with the green custom bike but I didn't want to push my luck with the gang . . .

Itaewon looks soooo different during the day . . .

If you know where this sign is you'll know what I was shopping for--maybe, lol--wink wink.

Julianne and I came across the remnants of Halloween parties . . . we didn't go out as we were still tired from the previous weekend at KOTESOL.

We wanted to have dinner at the Smokey Saloon. It has the best hamburgers in Korea. But the last THREE TIMES we've gone there we've been unable to get in as there was a lineup of several people waiting to get in. They seriously need to expand and get a new location.

Kraze Burger is probably the second best place to go for a good hamburger.

We ordered Chilli Fries and cokes.

I got the Mega-Bite hamburger . . .

Later we went to Yongsan Electronics Market to do a little browsing . . .

In front of the subway station building and I-Park mall there are Christmas decorations everywhere.

So we took some 'cute' (most overused English word in Korea) pics . . .

Taken from the steps leading up and into the subway station corridor that connects you with the electronics shopping area.

If you're looking for somewhere to take some cool night pics with Xmas-style lighting check out the concert and performance area on top of the subway station.

We're going to try and go back when we both have our SLRs and tripods.

Time to go home . . .


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