2008 Trip to Korea

Monday, March 31, 2008


Sunday we headed to Myeong Dong Cathedral. Given typical McDonald tardiness plus getting lost, we arrived as the English mass was ending. So we stayed for a Korean Mass, sitting in the back, where they show the altar on big TVs. Most interesting was the sign of peace, which, instead of a handshake, was a bow. We spent the rest of the day at Insadong, a street of art galleries, antique stores, souvenir stands, and tea houses. While we get lots of weird looks from people (which is not that different from home, being a transracial family), I have been overwhelmed with how kind people have been, especially with Rowan. Not a subway ride has gone by without someone offering their seat, offering Rowan a chocolate, or playing peek-a-boo (ca-coon in Korean). Today at Insadong, we had chops (traditional name stamps) made for both kids with their Korean and American names. It took some time for the machine to carve them and, while we were waiting, the ladies in the store just doted on Rowan. They gave him a keychain and then, as we were leaving, they gave us two beautiful cases for the chops for free as "a gift for your Korean children." We also purchased a scroll for Maren's room and another piece of artwork for Rowan. The artist was in the shop and was able to add their Korean names to the scrolls.

Insadong then (2006) and Now


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