Napping in Kimchee Guesthouse Sinchon

Forgot to take a photo while staying…. Hihihi.

I was still standing motionless in north of square to enjoying the majesty of Gwanghwamun Gate , the six-century gate belonging to Gyeongbok Palace. Gwanghwamun Square with its andesite rock floor and a mix of green garden grass seemed to be starting to fill up with the flow of tourists visiting.

Apart from the statue of Admiral Yi Sunshin, the golden statue of King Sejong, the Great-the fourth king of Joseon Dynasty was an important destination for travelers. They were too fascinated by that statues when I preferred to pay attention to the bustle of United States Embassy in the edge of Sejong-daero Avenue next to National Museum of Korean Contemporary History.

It didn’t feel like time had passed since midday, the rest of sleepiness after spending the night in Seoul Express Bus Terminal made me unable to hide the sleepiness in my eyelids. My body which hadn’t been soaked in water since 30 hours ago also made me not feel comfortable.

“It’s better to just go back to the inn”, so excited, my mind aborted my enthusiasm to continue exploration. “Damn….I give up this time”, I was groaning in annoyance, I entered the gates of Gwanghwamun Station.

“Goodbye Jongno District”, I quietly thought as I jumped into Seoul Metro Line 5 carriage. Without noticing commotion inside the carriage, I immediately headed to an empty seat near carriage’s connection. Without further ado, I immediately closed my eyes because of sleepiness.

Now, I was heading to Hongik University Station with one stop at Chungjeongno Station because to get to Kimchee Guesthouse Sinchon in Seodaemun District I had to take Seoul Metro Line 2.

24 minutes later I arrived at my destination. Before actually leaving Hongik University Station, I took time to go to T-Money card vending machine at the corner of corridor to refill my T-Money which was almost out of balance. That time I filled my Seoul city travel card with 10,000 Won, more than enough for the end of my adventure in Seoul.

My back and forth at Hongik University Station ended up at a G-25 minimarket for a simple lunch. I managed to get a piece of packaged Kimbab for just 1,300 Won. Enough or not, that was the only lunch that I had to accept.

After eating it in convenience store table, I immediately climbed the escalator which rose to surface, passed Sinchon-ro 2-gil alley, crossed Sinchon-ro Avenue, then rushed to the inn.

“Hooohh….You, Donny. Welcome, your room is ready”, said the same receptionist who greeted me this morning.

“Hi, Sir….Thank you. I think I should go to bed soon….Hahaha”, I lihgtly answered while clutching my blue backpack which I had put in the corner of front room since this morning.

“Oh yeah, you look tired”

“Yes, I spent my last night at Seoul Express Bus Terminal”, I agreed.

After receptionist scanned my passport which I gave to him, the room key was given. Not waiting long, I immediately went upstairs, entered the room, took off my winter jacket and shoes, then immediately jumped into bunk bed to daub myself until afternoon.

The Candlelight Revolution in Gwanghwamun Square

It was almost noon as I slowly descended alley after alley of Bukchon Hanok Village. Stepping between traditional Korean buildings seemed to throw me back in time, a time when Joseon Dynasty was enjoying its golden era.

A few moments later, my steps were parallel to Bukchon-ro Avenue section. I casually walked enjoying cool midday air of Seoul while occasionally stopping in several winter jacket sellers. But its price, which was still above 125,000 Won, made me reluctant to stop any longer.

I quickened my pace when the face of Anguk Station could be seen far ahead. But a few steps later, I slowed down my steps, my ears could barely hear Indonesian language from a small shop, four Indonesian travelers were enjoying a dish of Chimaek (a dish of fried chicken mixed with South Korean beer). Their joking fun made me reluctant to greet them but I was able to confirm that they were from the same nation as me.

Entering Anguk Station, I headed straight for the platform. Catching the Seoul Metro to get to Sejongno area immediately. Seoul Metro arrived just moments after I reached the platform.

The Dog…Oops…..

Entering a carriage, I couldn’t hide my chuckle. “Oh, No……”, this Seoul Metro was similar to the old Jakarta’s Commuter “Very funny …”, there were a seller screaming explaining goods they was selling.

That was not enough… there were men quickly walked through carriage after carriage to simply slip business cards between doors, carriage poles and whatever places to put it were possible. “Ohh my God…”, I was even lowering my face I still couldn’t hide my amusement.

That funny moments was closed with another funny scene where train officer combed the carriage to take all business cards which were tucked away before I got off in Jongno 3(sam)-ga Station.

Now, I was changing to Seoul Metro Line 5 to get to final destination of Gwanghwamun Station. Not passing another station, so I quickly arrived at Gwanghwanum Square.

Impatiently stepping the escalator, I tried to get as fast as I could to surface. Arriving at the exit I could only stand frozen, staring at a statue of a legendary South Korean fighter. It was a statue of Admiral Yi Sun-sin who proudly stood with a sword grip in his right hand and a suit of armor which covered almost his entire body.

Admiral Yi Sun-sin himself was a Joseon Dynasty era warrior who with his 12 fleet of warships fought Japanese invasion in 23 major battles at sea.

Meanwhile, Gwanghwanum Square used to be one of the most famous royal squares because several royal government buildings were placed around this square.

However, my arrival seemed to coincide with a large demonstration that was remembered as The Candlelight Revolution, a popular protest against corruption scandal which carried out by the President of South Korea, Park Geun-hye.

Beberapa tenda demonstran masih tampak tersisa di kiri kanan sisi patung Laksamana Yi Sun-sin. Tetapi itu semua tidak mengurangi rasa antusiasku untuk menikmati Gwanghwamun Square.