Sunday, March 7, 2010

Blog 6 - March 8

Trees and plants are clothed in rice straw to protect them during winter. I've never seen this before but then I've never lived in a snowy climate before. I wonder if other cold countries do this. This photo was taken in the gardens of the Somerset Hotel on my way to a lecture given by the Royal Asiatic Society, which is an old and wonderful Korean institution. Here is the link http://www.raskb.com/

Our cultural experience this week was a visit to the Leeum Samsung Museum. Here is the link http://leeum.samsungfoundation.org/eng/main.asp. They also dress the bamboo!



This enormous and scary sculpture in the Leeum courtyard was by a french woman, Louise Bourgeois.

A typical Korean cafe in Gwanak Gu, our local area.

When shopping in the local street market I come across many unrecognisable foods. What could this be? Fermented soy bean paste, meju, is used to flavour Korean sauces and soups such as miso. With no car, while not working and with only 2 people to feed (what bliss!), I have time to indulge and shop every few days. It is also an opportunity to practice my few Korean words on the poor unsuspecting vendors. Actually it's fun getting to know the regulars and I've never seen another westerner there so far.

Local zucchinis are individually wrapped at 1800 won each (AU$1.80). Nothing else seems to be individually wrapped like this so I'm curious why zucchini. Yet another mystery!

Sunday afternoon persimmon tea with our Russian friend Sophia and Gali, who will be 9 months old on Tuesday.

Those who know me well, can testify to my love of a good pot of tea. Koreans drink delicious teas made from corn, barley, buckwheat, lotus leaf and dandelion, however, plain black loose leaf tea has been impossible to buy. I have asked every expat I met, searched in all supermarkets, especially luxury departments and yesterday finished the one packet of Lan-choo I'd brought with me from Australia. I had all but given up and put it on my list of things to bring back next time. It was not until we stumbled across an Indian supermarket last night that we unexpectedly struck gold! We also found curry powder, cous cous, falafel, lentils, olive oil and chick peas so look forward to some wonderful feasts.

An interesting juxtaposition of old and new at our local street corner.

1 comment:

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