Sunday, December 19, 2004
I used to come here often. Maybe twice a month. But then they built LaFesta here in Ilsan, and its 6 cinemas, and not only did I stop going into Seoul for all the movies that weren't showing at Lotte, I didn't need to leave Ilsan for shopping anymore.
Namdeamun and Dongdaemun are Greenmarket Square type markets. I bought a nice pair of cargo pants there once. I also had my ATM card swallowed by a machine there (simply because I'd put it in), on a Saturday and waited about 3 hours to get it back.
Chungmuro though has another attraction. Behind the cinema is a beautiful park with a Folk Village, big ponds filled with giant Koi, a restaurant serving traditional food and dancing shows in an intimate, enclosed courtyard.
One day I walked through the park, and sat down at a bench with a Korean friend. Moments later people arrived with photographic equipment and started setting up a shoot. We were right on the side of it, so I thought they'd ask us to move. They didn't so we just watched. It was a spring family thing for Lotte Department Stores.
Chungmuro is also a nice way to approach Namsan Park, but it's a longer walk than from Myeongdong.