Then on Wednesday I entered the city alone (much easier to navigate the subway system without dragging two small children around) and made my way to Yonsei University, which has a renowned Korean Language Institute. My main objective in that visit was to check out the Korean language materials available. I managed to pick up a number of textbooks to help me advance in the language.
Today I ventured into town again (alone – and it’s a good thing, because the subway was SRO, and we were crammed in like sardines there for a while, without any pushers, thank you :) ), first to check out Kyobo Bookshop, which happens to be the largest bookstore in Korea. I picked up a Korean-English (NKJV) Bible, a couple of children’s Bibles, a manga version of the Old Testament as well as one of Genesis (yes, I know, I don’t really care for that style of animation/illustration – but I find comics extremely helpful in language learning, and they don’t seem to have enough taste or good sense to have any Carl Barks’ (or any other illustrator, for that matter) Donald Duck, so it’s either Bible stories or Pokemon-type of stuff – well, given that choice, guess which one I prefer?), a children’s book of stories such as Sinbad the Sailor and Peter Pan, and a children’s book of modern Korean tales. There is also a children’s book of traditional Korean folktales that I’d like to get, but I didn’t see it – perhaps on my next shopping trip.
Weighted down with all these books, I then did a little sightseeing. I went down the street (past the American Embassy, outside of which was crawling with police in riot gear because the place is a magnet for protestors and other rabble-rousers) to the palace Gyeongbokgung at Gwanghwamun. There is a changing-of-the-guards ceremony every hour on the hour, and I managed to get there just in time to witness this. The following pictures are from the ceremony and the palace grounds.
The changing of the guards.