Travel

Week in Photos: Hong Kong

Kowloon
Almost drank it because we were afraid the restaurant manager was going to yell at us.


We literally walked everywhere- just wish I knew the names of the places I was in

It’s hard to find good dim sum in Korea so we ate until we couldn’t anymore.
She must have hated us because we made her open every single thing asking weird questions.


Dinner
One of the greatest finds in HK: iPhone case that looks like a Bible!

Some kind of meat wrapped in a thin layer of tofu. Delicious!

then walked some more…


<3

East meets West

Hong Kong has to be one of the most dynamic and exciting cities I’ve been to.

Besides the interesting culture, I see mountains covered with lush forests to the right and an ocean to the left.
Even the weather is quite dynamic- it rains cats and dogs one moment then it’s sunny the next thanks to its subtropical climate.
My travel buddies


Sam has been an amazing tour guide. I give her five stars!

 

Stay a little longer










Finally got to visit the Han River sort of accidentally when we went to Yeouido (여의도) to check out the Cherry Blossom Festival (벚꽃축제). ‘Two rabbits caught in one attempt’ as Koreans would say. Not bad, not bad at all.

Did a long walk around a nearby park for a morning workout. With Cherry Blossoms in full bloom, morning walk couldn’t be more pleasant. Wish spring would last forever. On another note, strangely and randomly feeling like going to a department store for some reason today. Hmm.

Mango striped top, Sinequanone floral print skirt, Modern Vintage ankle boots, Husband’s belt, Gifted fuchsia leather blazer


Let a thousand flowers bloom

After a long wait, spring has finally arrived in Seoul and the flowers are blooming all over the city.



Forsythias (개나리): One of the first signs of spring






What excites me most is the Cherry Blossoms (벚꽃). Interestingly enough, they have always been my favorite kind yet I had never seen them in person up until now. I thought they could only be found in Japan for some reason but they are literally all over Korea apparently. I wish spring would stay forever.


Magnolias in full bloom

Wherever you are, I hope you are enjoying springtime. As for me, I’m so ready to do some major spring cleaning!!

Snow Wonderland





I’m away on a sort-of-last-minute mini vacation at the moment. Had one of the best runs ever today since Aspen more than two years ago though the snow isn’t as great (it is no longer Winter, after all). So awesome how the slopes are almost empty, though not so happy about having extremely limited choices when it comes to eating as most places are closed due to its being off-peak season. As a result, when we walked into the food court this morning, there was one thing on the menu, and it was not cheap. Can’t complain though, because I can’t remember the last time when I got to feed myself warm Korean-style breakfast before going on the slopes. It was always either pizza or a burger that cost more than a lift ticket.

On another note, it’s been twenty years since I last visited this particular resort. It’s a strange feeling to be back after so many years.

NOTE: I’m obviously on a short break from the 15/20 project for a few days due to the ski trip; thanks for your understanding!

Back to Reality. And Boy, Does It Feel Good






I don’t think I’ve ever said this before, but it actually feels awesome to be back to reality. Praise the Lord!

Oh, by the way, finally sharing some shots of Sam Cheong Dong taken in Winter. It’s so nice and warm in Seoul now. Lovin’ it!

Seven Grand


“There is definitely a bookish, masculine vibe to the place… the kind of joint you’d find in Fitzgerald, Hemingway or Miller (Henry, not Arthur)… a great place to drink bourbon, puff on a cigar and pretend to be in an imaginary boys club. Even if you’re a girl.”
– LA WEEKLY

“Boys Club” is probably the most accurate way to describe this place, though all I had was a glass of ice water in place of a cigar and scotch.

Great music & art, funky crowd, and lots of heads…

It’s a Small World

Was in Las Vegas last week. Though we did take our Canon with us, there weren’t many opportunities for photos. Anyhow, these are what I have from the trip taken on my iPhone. In a nutshell, the trip basically consisted of strange yet interesting sightings including a giant Prada luggage, a dragon, the Statue of Liberty, a gondola, a gigantic dog on a bike, snow in the desert, etc. What was most interesting however, was seeing the replicas after actually having been to the actual landmarks not so long ago, such as the Venetian Hotel and the mini Eiffel Tower at the Paris Hotel posted above. Now that I had the ability to compare them to the real things, I realized what a good job they did replicating. That’s some skills, right there.

It was surprisingly chilly. Definitely regretted (and still regretting after being back to California from the trip) not bringing warm clothes from Korea.

A Walk to Remember



Two days before we left Korea, it snowed so much that everything in Seoul, and I mean everything, was covered in snow. We happened to be on the 8th floor of Doota in Dong Dae Mun when it started snowing so we were able to witness the beginning of it all. After grabbing a few fishcake sticks (odeng) and a potato dog outside, we decided to take a walk which ended up being two hours long… Despite having to fight the cold, it was the most romantic walk ever. I felt like I was in a Korean drama walking by Cheong Gye Cheon (a stream that flows across the city). If you are ever in Seoul during the winter, I highly, highly recommend this walk, especially when it snows hard.

The Past and the Present

Insadong-gil is “well known as a traditional street to both locals and foreigners” and represents the “culture of the past and the present”.  It contains a mixture of historical and modern atmosphere and is a “unique area of Seoul that truly represents the cultural history of the nation.”


One question I ask myself regularly is, ‘What will I be doing a year from now?’ A year ago, I had no idea that I would be moving to Korea. It was the same situation a year before I moved to New York which suddenly took place in 2000. Three years later, I didn’t know that I would be moving back to California the following year. I didn’t know that I would be studying Marketing in college instead of Design, and even less expected was that I would end up in graduate school. (I never considered myself as the type that could study for hours, or even read so many books…)

I used to enjoy developing and maintaining short term and long term plans but I realize that no matter how well-planned I believe myself to be, nothing in life happens as planned and I’m often reminded that everything is in God’s hands. As the year-end approaches, I sit in my new room in Seoul and wonder what I will be doing, or where I will be on December 23, 2012.

But for now, my focus is on enjoying the present.

I’m extremely thankful to be given an opportunity to be reunited with my roots, and experience the growth of my love for Korea. (btw, one of the huge supporting factors is the Korean Drama called 뿌리깊은 나무, or Tree with Deep Roots. It’s not only remarkably entertaining (it’s been the top rated TV show in Korea for months), but educational and artistically inspiring. It’s helped me develop a new appreciation for the Korean language and its history.) I’m loving it here even though it’s so cold out I rarely leave the room. haha

I wish every single one of you a very merry Christmas filled with many blessings and joy as well as a very happy new year. Thank you for reading my blog and commenting, it really means a lot to me.

Hugs & Kisses,

Karen <3