One Sweet World

Not so important posts about a married couple living in Baltimore.

Location: Baltimore, Maryland, United States

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Japan - October 12th

Tuesday morning we all (all 9 of us!) made it to the Busan airport for our flight to Sapporo on the island of Hokkaido in Japan. Our first stop off the tour bus (yes, we had our own tour bus) was lunch in a small seaside town. Outside the restaurant/market was a huge crab and a equally huge bear, both of which we would see a lot of on Hokkaido. We had ramen and salmon roe on rice for lunch. The ramen was ridiculously good! After lunch it was back in the bus to visit Noboribetsu Date Jidai Mura, an Edo era village in the town of Noboribetsu. Here we saw a traditional Japanese theater show and a ninja show. We also walked around the gardens and the other replica buildings. It was all a little hokey but the weather was nice so it was comfortable walking around. From here it was back on the bus for the ride to the Shikotsu-Toya National Park where we got to see a sulfur hot spring. With the sulfur it stank pretty bad but it was a beautiful park! We even got a short hike to see the small geyser there as well. The sun was setting right when we got there and it cast some beautiful shadows on the rocks and vegetation. Our hotel for the evening was located right across the street and used the water from the hot spring in the onsen (Japanese hot spring baths) that were located on the lower levels of the hotel (one for women, one for men). Since the hotel and the area is famous for its onsen, we decided we had to go. Here's a photo of us in our robes ready to head down to the baths!

We had buffet dinner at the hotel that night and walked around the small town later that evening.

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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Korea - October 6th - 12th

This October Kevin and I traveled to Korea for his grandfather's 88th birthday party. His parents, brother, sister and brother-in-law were also traveling to Korea for the party and family vacation. We left Baltimorethemorning of the 6th and arrived in Seoul the evening of the 7th. It was a 26 hour travel "day." I don't think you can call it a travel day once you travel for more than 24 hours! We got to our hotel around 10:00 PM and was in bed shortly thereafter. The morning andafternoon of the 8th was our only time alone in Seoul. We decided to go somewhere we hadn't been before and with limited time I thought going to N Seoul Tower would be a good adventure. It was close to the hotel so we could walk there and I hadn't been there before. The weather was a bit cloudy but we thought going to the top of the tower would still afford us a good overview of Seoul. The tower is located in Namsan Park, on top of a hill, just south of downtown Seoul. You get the full 360 degree view of the city. It's amazing to see the amount of high rise buildings and how far into the distance they go! We spent the afternoon at the hotel and walking down the Cheonggyecheon, a restored stream in downtown Seoul. It was a nice relaxing way of spending the afternoon. Then it was off with Dave & Eurie to a family dinner with the Hyun side of the family. We walked to their new apartment and was able to meet the family again and share a meal.

The next day, Saturday, we took the KTX train down to Busan to meet up with the rest of the family and to visit the grandparents. Had a family meal at their house and spent time with the family. Sunday was the day of the party and we started early with Mom and I going to the spa in the morning to get clean and body scrub. A quick breakfast at the hotel then off to the salon for the ladies to get their hair done. The party was at Todai and we arrived early to take some family photos, but not everyone was on time. So we waited for a while and finally got everyone together for a group shot. The party included family and friends and turned out nicely. In the evening we walked through Dongnae Market and had dinner there.

Monday was a slow day spent with the family. Went to lunch at Todai, walked through the Centum City department store (supposedly the largest department store in the world, it really looked like a mall), visited Samchoon and his new wife and baby and walked along Gwangalli Beach. Had dinner near the hotel and an early night to bed.

Tuesday we were all on our way to Japan for our tour of Hokkaido!

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