Sunday, November 2, 2014

Chuseok 2014 Through My Camera!

We decided to spend Chuseok day sightseeing in Seoul. I had also found out through the Korea tourism website that the National Folk Art Museum would be having a festival with lots of activities and demonstrations. The museum is located inside Gyeongbokgung Palace. We made our way to the palace taking pictures as we went.
I had heard for years from my Korean friends that all the palaces are open on Chuseok and they are poorly attended on holidays so we thought it was a great time to go. As we approached the palace we saw tour bus after tour bus, too many to count. Not a good sign. 
                                                     I never get tired of seeing this.

                                     I love seeing the mountains in the middle of Seoul.
                   I just wish I had somewhere to put one of these drums. They are so beautiful.
At first the crowds weren't too bad.
But as we made our way to the museum, we encountered more and more people. It turned out that we weren't the only ones who thought this was a great idea.
                                                                      Cutie patootie.
                               Oh yeah! Where else can you make your own poo soap.
 I thought about making my own soap poo but I would have been the only adult without children doing it and it was so blasted hot that it would have surely melted before we got home. I like how the picture shows the poo steaming.
                      But there was a lot of soap poo making going on. The tables were packed.

We also found a popcorn making guy. There used to be one of these right when we got off the bus in Seoul at Sadang station. I think they made him move because if you happened to walk buy when the popcorn popped, it would scare you to death.
                                    We also found a lot of children's games going on.
              And then we saw this couple's shirt. I don't think I could get Rocketman to wear one.
    I can't get Rocketman to wear this either. We ran into a lot of tour groups mostly from China.
                                     I just love hanboks and we saw many on Chuseok.
                                                                  I love the rooflines.
                       It was so hot and humid. Many found shade wherever they could.

Then we met Hannah for dinner and planned to head up to Namsan Tower so Rocketman could take some photos of the sunset. We ate dinner at VIPS and took a taxi to the base of the tower hill. We saw at least 200 people in line to take the bus to the top and Hannah asked the taxi driver how long it would take to walk. He told her 20 minutes. He lied.

We started walking, which was a very steep incline as the sun went down in the West. It took us about 45 minutes to get to the top. We were dying from the heat and the incline. It was dark when we finally arrived only to see that about 1000 or more had the same idea as we did. Hannah was shocked.
It was too crowded for Rocketman to even set up his tripod so I whipped out my point and shoot and took these photos. We were sweaty, disappointed and couldn't wait to get down so we decided to take the tram down. Of course, the line was huge and we waited about an hour to get down. We were shoved into the tram like sardines. I had a Korean man actually push so hard on my back to get in that I was sure he left welts. He didn't care that I couldn't move any further into the tram. I told Rocketman what he had done to me and he gave him a hard shove when we finally disembarked. I never looked back.
We found out later that it was also the harvest moon, something that occurs on Chuseok every hundred years so that is why is was especially busy.
                                                                  Never again.

Here is some video I shot of the Festival:

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