Tuesday was definitely the HOTTEST day since we have been here. Combine that with a super long day of touring the city of Seoul, and we were tired!
We started off by hopping on the Seoul City Tour bus near Insadong. The first little bit of the ride was very pleasant as we were the only ones on the bus and put our headphones on and listened to descriptions of the things we were passing. But it didn't last long, as we watched a herd of people squeezing in the bus at the next stop. I am not sure if I would reccomend the tour to someone as we stood half the time and didn't even get to hear about the places we were passing by.
We stayed on for a few more minutes and then our first stop was The National Museum of Korea. WOW- is all I can say about this ginormous museum! We took one look and knew there was no way we could see everything. It was gorgeous inside and out and there were many beautiful things on display. Most suprising to us was that it was FREE! One could very easily spend the entire day here, but we had so many more things we wanted to see, so we got the shortened version and got back on the bus.
A lot of Buddhist artifacts on display.
There were kids from schools everywhere holding hands and I just had to snap a few pictures of these cuties!
All of their little red backpacks were lined up
There were some beautiful gardens here as well
Next stop was the War Memorial of Korea.
Again, I wish we had all day to spend here- it is the world's largest war memorial/museum and it was amazing! It was so huge, that we never even got to go inside because there were so many cool things outside! Did I mention it was hot?
The boys really liked this place and wanted a picture next to every single plane or tank or statue! It is a boy's dream to be surrounded by so many cool war vehicles!
Honoring the many who fought and died in the Korean War.
Looking back, I think we should have just stayed here the rest of the day instead of rushing to see everything else. There was so much we didn't see. Oh well, next time!
This was where we were headed next: The Seoul Tower (that big pointy thing in the distance)
Still very hot and sweaty!
After riding the very crowded and hot bus up most of Namsan mountain, we walked up the steep hill the rest of the way to the Seoul Tower. (We are definitely not lacking daily excercise on this trip- that's for sure!)
There is a story behind these locks
We rode the elevator up to the observatory tower and looked out over the city. It was a beautiful area and a spectacular view of the entire city. The air was not super clear so the pictures were not the greatest, but you get the general idea that we were really high up!
We were running short on time, so we just grabbed a taxi and headed straight back to our hotel for quick showers and got ready to go to the Korea House. I had several people recommend this place to me as someplace you don't want to miss when coming here, so I wanted to give it a try. Now, I had heard it was expensive, but Randy and I were absolutely shocked when the bill came and we spent a small fortune on basically a rice dinner and an hour show. I say rice dinner because although it was buffet... rice is just about the only thing we ended up eating! As you know we are not seafood eaters and just about everything was some sort of seafood, so we chowed down on rice and vegetables and green tea. The boys had a good time folding their napkins while we waited
Lovely picture that our new photographer Jensen took
Waiting for the show to start
The show had some beautiful dancing and the dancers were dressed in gorgeous hanboks, but it was hard for the boys to stay awake (Nathan actually fell alseep for awhile) because it was just slow moving and long. At one point this lady came out and sung the whole story of what was going to happen for at least 10 or 15 minutes- but it was all in Korean of course! I loved watching the ladies playing the drums- it was amazing.
The best part were these dancer guys who had these hats on their heads with long ribbons. When they circled their heads around, the ribbons danced and then the guys danced and jumped over them. The boys liked that part- it was more exciting!
I really wish we would have known that we could have just seen the show with out dinner, because it was so expensive and nothing we would have chosen to eat. Oh well, we are learning aren't we?!
We never ended up getting back on the bus for the rest of the tour either, so that was kind of a bummer too.
After riding the subway back, we were all pretty tired and went to bed. It had been a long hot day but we feel as though we know even more about Korea today than we did yesterday and that was part of the goal!
Now it is Wednesday morning here and it is the day we get our baby girl for good! We are going to maybe just hang around here until lunch and then go out and get to Holt at 3:00. We are very excited about today, yet I know that it is going to be an emotional one as well. Mrs. Kim will have to say goodbye to Won Sa-ra and I know that it will not be easy. Sa-ra will leave her Omma and join our family, but she has no idea of what today holds. I am praying for both of them today as they spend their last hours together...
And just because she is soooo cute:
****Thank you for all of the prayers,comments and messages to us while we are here! We love reading them and feel very loved and encouraged by our friends and family. You are a blessing to us!!!