Seoul riot police and other sights

We were climbing up the steps at the subway station heading outside today when we saw a pair of riot police looking down at us.

 

Seoul riot police

 

The above photo shows the police from above and outside the station. I didn’t dare take a photo of them as we went up the steps cos I didn’t know what was going on then. (Actually, I still don’t.)

The moment we reached outside, we saw endless troops of them, all standing in formation along the street.

 

Seoul riot police

 

Seoul riot police

 

Seoul riot police

 

We were on our way to the War Memorial of Korea again because we didn’t manage to finish seeing everything the other day. The subway station is about two minutes’ walk from the War Memorial and the Korean Ministry of National Defense.

 

Seoul riot police

 

As we stood there gawking, there was suddenly some yelling and then a squad of policemen started running across the street. We couldn’t see anything interesting they might be running to, so we decided to walk down towards the National Defense building to see if anything was happening there.

Nothing much was up. Just large gatherings of press and police along the way.

 

Seoul riot police

 

Seoul riot police

 

They all seemed to be waiting for something but nothing happened while we were there.

Nothing directly outside the Defense Ministry, either. Just lots of police buses crowding the entire driveway.

I wanted to stay outside and wait in case something happened, but Kay wanted to go into the war museum. He said nothing was going to happen; they were just standing by in case something did happen.

When we came out again from the museum four hours later, everything had cleared. And we didn’t hear of anything happening outside while we were inside.

Not that it’s a bad thing, right? We’re still safe and sound! =D

I have too many photos of the war memorial, which is kinda scary, so I’m gonna sit on it for a bit. Today, I’ll just post up random photos of stuff I took around Seoul.

 

Prettily-wrapped sandwiches at a cafe called A Twosome Place:

A Twosome Place

 

The sandwiches and herbal chicken salad are awesome!

A Twosome Place

 

The last time I came to Seoul, I didn’t bump into people who were acted as mobile tourist information booths. This time, we bumped into them twice, once out in the street and once in a subway station.

One night, in Itaewon, a district full of cafes with cuisines from all over the world, while we were looking for something and occasionally referring to our Lonely Planet guidebook, these two guys came up to us and said, “Tourist information. Can we help?”

I love that!

 

Itaewon, Seoul

 

Coin-operated Internet access at the “business center” in our apartment, lol. It costs KRW500 (S$0.60) for 30 minutes. (We do have Internet in the room, which costs KRW10,000 (S$11.50) per week.)

Coin-operated Internet

 

Got my McDonald’s fix! Big Mac tastes the same as in Singapore. The Bulgogi burger is nice.

McDonalds in Seoul

 

Ad in a Korean English newspaper. Want a six-pack, anyone?

Plastic surgery ad

 

Kraze Burger is a Korean burger chain and it’s good! The patties are thick and juicy. The one with garlic in it is great, better than the classic Kraze burger.

Kraze Burger

 

Kraze Burger

 

Sweet potato peddler:

Street sweet potato

 

We went to this famous Korean ginseng chicken restaurant supposedly favourited by presidents. It’s called Tosokchon and it’s a few minutes walk from Gyeongbokgung Subway Station (Exit 2).

Tosokchon Korean Ginseng Chicken

 

Tosokchon Korean Ginseng Chicken

 

It’s really good, that is, if you like ginseng chicken soup. This is the best I’ve had so far. The soup is thick and tasty, with a mildly pleasant herbal and ginseng aftertaste. I usually hate the glutinous rice stuffing in this dish but I liked this one for its sweetness. I don’t mean sugary sweet, but more like a very subtle sweetness that teases the tongue sporadically.

 

Tosokchon Korean Ginseng Chicken

 

Don’t order the roast chicken if you ever eat there. It’s quite mediocre and a waste of good stomach space.

 

Tosokchon Korean Ginseng Chicken

 

Tosokchon Korean Ginseng Chicken

 

It must be the persimmon season in Korea now because you see them (and mini oranges) more than any other fruits right now.

There are two types of persimmons here. One is the regular big one we can buy in Singapore. Another is a longish apple-shaped one. They’re all sold in an overripe state, which is really mushy. I guess the Koreans like it that way.

I love it! The apple-shaped ones taste like chiku, really sweet and awesome, on the outer layer. Deeper inside, you get lots of the chewy gel-looking bits that most people like in persimmons.

 

Korean persimmon

 

Sorry, I don’t have a photo of the inside because both my hands were all full of the fruit by the time I started eating. :P

The groceries we’ve accumulated over the week:

Groceries

 

I would have more but Kay is going for his surgery next week so we’ll be staying at the hospital for 2-3 days. Will collect more groceries once he’s out.

I love eating junk food at home as much as I love eating good food outside.

Luncheon meat sandwiches! I would eat that every other day if it weren’t so unhealthy!

 

Luncheon meat

 

The first time we ate that here, I was just gonna dump the meat into the microwave to heat it up a bit. Or even just eat it straight off the can. But Kay, being more hardworking than me when it comes to preparing food, insisted on pan-frying them.

It was an excellent decision. Crispy luncheon meat is awesome! Haven’t eaten such good luncheon meat since the Ma Ling ban in Singapore dunno how many donkey years ago.

 

Luncheon meat

 

Shall eat more luncheon meat while I’m here, crazy as it seems.

Wish I had more stomachs!