Friday, 21 December 2012

I Think I'm Turning Korean, I Think I'm Turning Korean, I Really Think So...

Hello Peeps!

It's been awhile since my last update, but I've been pretty busy with work. I'm pretty sure I'm sleeping right now as I type this. I'm sleep-typing. Comes with the territory of being a Kindergarten teacher.

Anyway, as I continue to immerse myself into the Korean culture, I find that I am slowly starting to blend in. You know, minus my blonde hair.

The subway maps are no longer cryptic runes, and I am more than comfortable walking down the street and seeing the city as my home.

These streets. This is a typical sidewalk here. The red path is supposedly for bikes, but people walk on them anyway. The yellow strips are what I have been told are for the blind so that they can feel where they are going. They are actually very nice looking walks, and very wide.

Another thing I've noticed is that my style has changed. I wear leggings with baggy sweaters like most of the women here do, with giant scarves. And when I say scarves, I mean the big thick knitted ones. They're amazing.

Also, I've started getting more into make up. I've stated before that I was never one for make-up back home, but now, because of the price I've gotten more into them. Also, one other thing that I forgot to mention....


I've gotten a lot of free things from cosmetics stores, and the more you buy, the better the prize.

BEHOLD! The mighty owl blanket! You wear it as a cape and the owl head can be worn like a hood. I put it on and transform into.... OWL GIRL! DEFENDER OF JUSTICE AND FURRY WOODLAND CREATURES!

No really, I do. I jump around my room squawking like a maniac. I get bored. And let's just say that my walls are very thin....

BEHOLD! The mighty... Okay, whatever, it's a cell phone holder. And I very cute one at that. It's wings are pose-able, so you can lay your phone on the side if you want while it charges, or just use it as a stand. Too bad you can't just buy this one, I already have requests from back home for these.


Moving on, before I embarrass myself further....

My bunny sleepy mask. I've never needed to use one of these until now. My window is huge, like, half the size of my room, so the sun shines in like its coming at me with a vendetta. So, on the weekends when I actually see the sun when I get up, I use it to a get a few extra hours of shut eye.

It's also one of the cutest things I've ever seen.

I bought a teddy bear. He is big.

This guys name is Rilakkuma, and I believe he originates from Japan. All of the kids over here love him, and he has a ton of merchandise.

He is cuddly, and I love him and I hug him and he is mine.

Another thing I've noticed about Korea is the outrageous prices on electronics and appliances.

This 50" TV is over $2000! That's crazy!

This is a microwave. Granted, it's fairly large, but it's still almost $300.

Lol, this one's on sale! In all seriousness though, not a bad price.

So, after weeping at the prices of appliances, I decided I needed a pick me up, so you know what I did?

That's right, I looked at puppies!

This dachshund puppy reminds me of my old dog Copper so much, it's crazy. This little guy looks just like him! And he rolls around on his back just like Copper did! Adorable.

Another thing about Korea that very different from home are it's advertisements and store names.

Exhibit A:

Umm, what? What a bizarre shoe ad. And I don't know about you, but I don't think I want to own a shoe called "The Streaker". A typical conversation would start out like "Hey, what are you wearing?" "Oh, just my streakers."

Again, what?

This makes me giggle. Why is there a clothing store called "Teenie Weenie?" What is that implying? I see they sell men's clothing as well as women's. I don't see any tiny sausages or wiener dogs.

What is this magical place, and what does it do? 

Well, I guess I'll end this post on a big positive note.

Or, you know a large monthly planner. I love things like this, you know they're honest. It's telling you that it has nothing to hide.

Until next time amigos!


Saturday, 1 December 2012

Christmas in Korea, a new obsession with nail polish, and "Oh, Wow." moments

So, I've been in Korea for three months now, and the holiday season is upon us. Bells are ringing, carolers come singing at my doorstep, and Christmas music fills the air with joyful merriment.

Except that it doesn't. Christmas here is a lot more muted than it is back home, and I like it. I see the odd Christmas tree and decorations, and the odd song on the radio, but nothing to the extent that it is back home. It's refreshing to say the least. Oh, and no one says "Merry Christmas!" to me every five seconds, and if they are, I can't understand them anyways.

But if there's one things that's wholly unchanged, it's the sales, and they're apparently a big friggin' deal.

I don't know what a "challenge sale" is, but consider is accepted. What, am I supposed to run through the aisles like a raving lunatic, grabbing everything I possibly can that says "sale", "two for one", or "30% off"?

No? Oh, sorry, that's Canada. I went into this department store, and it was fairly tame. No one was trying to push through anyone to get to that must have item. It was, however, a pretty ritzy place.

Behold, the Coach store. And I didn't even have to wait in line to get in. In fact, I think I was the only person in the store.

A sales person followed close beside me as my heart nearly stopped looking at all the prices. If you thought they were expensive in Canada, they're much more here. The average bag ran for about $500.00.

Now it's time for a round of "What's wrong with this picture?" Just take a look at these leg warmers and tell me what's wrong with them. You have thirty seconds. Go.

Figure it out? No? Well here's a closer look.

Um, what? Yeah, I'm sure these "toe socks" will keep my feet nice and warm.

A nice Christmas ad on the door of a bakery. He reminds me of the classic Pepsi Santa for some reason. I frequent this bakery often. The manager knows me.

Oh wow. This is an ad for jewellery. It reads "We thank you from the bottom of my heart for your concern and encouragement last year. Merry Christmas and Happy new year And we wish you full of good luck and prosperity."

I don't really know what to make of it....

Christmas display in Toys R Us. It's bigger than I thought it would be.

I think these are lights. Seems pretty expensive for a string of lights though. I kinda want some for my room all year round so I can make a more dimmed glow in my room.

This is.... I don't know what this is. I'm honestly flabbergasted. What IS IT? I'M SO CONFUSED!! Is it Thumbelina? Is it Alice in Wonderland? Is it the Rescuers?

This.... is the funniest thing I have ever seen.  You know, I kinda want to buy it just to see what's on it. Is it something completely unrelated to Disney? Is it all three films mashed into one? Either way, this is amazing.

Soooooo, I don't think I can top that. Time for a change of subject.


Now, those who know me well know that I don't like nail polish. But, since coming to Korea and seeing all the different kinds, I've kind of grown a fondness for it.

This is Etoinette, a line of cosmetics from Etude House, a Korean cosmetics store. The line is based off of Marie Antoinette and, her being my favorite Queen, I plan on grabbing as much as I can. These are called "Versaille nails", and the colours are beautiful.

This is a set of "Christmas colours", and I can't wait to try them! These are just from the Etude House line. They have a whole bunch of fun colours, and the prices are amazing. If there's one thing I'll miss about living here, it's the cosmetics.

Well, that's all for now. Be sure to check back for the next entry "Crap that hangs off my purse."

Sunday, 18 November 2012

A Look at the Underground

There's a great sprawling expanse running underneath Bupyeong. It' s long, twisting, and nearly impossible to navigate. Many a person has gotten lost in this vast maze, usually going insane from the madness.

Yes, it's the Bupyeong underground shopping center, and it's what I've been obsessed with the last few weeks.

It's like a flea market, only underground, so matter how bad the weather is, it will never interfere with your shopping. It's fairly big, so until you know your way around, it's very easy to get disoriented.

SHOES!! OH MY GAWD SHOES! This one's for my Mom and Auntie, who love to buy shoes. I do not like to buy shoes. I'm surrounded by shoes. Funny how that works.

There are a lot of shops that sell phone accessories and charms. I've never seen so many different cases in my life. Makes the one's in the mall back home look pitiful.

The main hub. This is where the subway entrance is. It you get lost, go back to this spot.

During my travels in the underground labyrinth, I came across a bookstore. This is A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin, the Korean version.

You know, they seem thinner. If you look at the spines, you'll see they're split into two parts for each book. Excellent idea, or an epic rip off? You decide!

A pink coat that I want. I don't think it'll fit though. One thing about Korea is that there appears to be only one size...

"What are these?" you ask. Well, I'll tell you, because I know. They're not calculators. They are for making your phone number, and then putting it in your car.

"But why?" Ah, I shall tell you again.

You see, in Korea, parking is sparse. Very sparse. So, people tend to double park or crunch in real close. This can cause people to become trapped. Naturally, this can cause panic, distress, and unbridled rage.

So, to avoid this, people place their cell phone numbers in their windshields so that if they block you or you need them to move, you just call them up and they'll come right on out and move for ya.

One thing I've noticed is how nice the mannequins are. I mean just look at them! They look like supermodels. The mannequins in the store I worked at didn't even have heads!

The place where I get most of my cosmetics. I didn't really care for make up before I came here, but the stuff they have is cute and cheap, I've started to get back into it.

Attack of the nail polish! Run away! It's coming to paint your nails in a rainbow fury!

Some of the stuff I got. The tube on the far left is grapefruit breath freshener. The tube beside it is peach lip balm. There's blue and purple eye shadow, and a mixed blush pot. The bottle is strawberry body wash, and it's the most amazing smelling body wash I've ever smelt. Couldn't resist it.

My phone. It's pink of course. I didn't get a smart phone because the plans are expensive, so this will do. I love my little milk charm. Drink your milk, kiddies!! :)

I hope you enjoyed that expedition to the underground. More adventures are sure to come, so stay tuned!

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Rapunzel, She's Everywhere!

Well, I said I was going to do it. I'm going to post my Rapunzel collection. Why? Because I can. Does it have any significance to my trip whatsoever? Well, yeah, it kinda does. I've seen some pretty nice Rapunzel merchandise here, and I plan on collecting it when I can. So to give you an idea of what I have, I'm going to post my collection here.

This is not the complete collection. I have a few items back home that I never took pictures of, so those will not be on photo list. They will however, be listed at the bottom.

On to item number one!

Classic Rapunzel doll. I added the flowers to her hair. I love the face on this doll over the other dolls you can find at toy stores. This one is from the Disney Store.

Flynn, donning his signature "smoulder" look. That's just funny, I love how they made his face like that.

My mini plush. This is the one piece of my collection that I brought with me. She traveled quite the distance.

The Animators Collection doll. I think she's one of my absolute favourites!

It's a crappy picture, but this is my poster! It adds a lot of colour to my room. Should have brought one with me to Korea, my room is boring.

The music box. Plays "I see the Light" by Alan Menkin. I like how the ribbon looks like a braid.

And the best piece, the Collectors Edition Wedding Doll, One of 8000. I simply love this doll, and I hope to snatch up the other Collectors Doll when I get the chance.

The other pieces of my collection not pictured are:

- A Rapunzel beach towel
- A sketch from Walt Disney World in Florida
- Four ornaments: Rapunzel's Tower, Rapunzel and Flynn's Wedding, Rapunzel with a Lantern, and Rapunzel with a paint brush.
- Another classic doll from the Disney Store.
- A Mother Gothel Doll, also from the Disney Store
- Rapunzel Wedding plush doll
- Rapunzel vinylmation figurine
- Rapunzel trading pin
And that's all for now! Hopefully I can find some neat stuff over here. I hope to go to Japan and get a doll from their Disney Store

Also, if anyone finds some neat stuff online or in Korea, let me know in the comments section below!

Friday, 2 November 2012

A View from the Top ... And a Lovely Park

So, I mentioned before that I live in a very tall building. Well, about three weeks after arriving here, I discovered that I could go up to the roof. So, being the oh so adventurous person that I am, I mosied on up there to take a few photos. At night. Here are the results.

Kinda blurry, but this is a view of the city.

And here is the endless traffic! I took this at about 11pm, and the traffic was still pretty heavy.

And here's the other direction. Don't ask me which, cause I don't know. At the very end of the street where the tiny red bar of light is is the Lotte Mart.

Let's move onto the park, shall we? These photos were taken at the Han River in Seoul, a very beautiful place to go and chill out. 

Seoul Tower. Kinda looks like the CN Tower in Toronto.

A shot of the river.

A pool with fountains. The kids like to play in these, and I can see why! They look awesome!

Infinity pools. I love these things, they make such a good effect.

The name of the park. This sign is a really hot place to take pictures. People were snapping photos by it all day long!

The floating stage. They concerts and shows on it, but it was closed the day I went.

Kites in the sunset. Kites are very popular at this park. As are tandem bikes.

Full Chuseok moon. It was so beautiful at night!

The sunset.

And this just because. My name has apparently taken over the world, because there is a chocolate covered fruit brand named Emily's. In Korea.