Discovering the world on $20 per day ......................

Post 122: Seoul, South Korea

Compared to Eastern Russia, Seoul is expensive, .. but then all cities usually are. In any new city it generally takes a few days before you discover the cheapest ways of doing things and that’s just beginning to happen here. Eating from the street, …. food stalls not pavement, saves money, …. discovering how to use the excellent subway system saves money, …. and finding ‘Backpackers Rooms’ can save a fortune. Today we’re moving to the Namsan Guest House, it’s in the centre of Seoul but it’s cheap, clean and has free WiFi, .. result.

Alan has decided against travelling any further in the Far East, .. he’ll stay here in Seoul for ten days before taking a direct flight to meet the bike in Seattle. He’s always wanted to see Hong Kong but doesn’t feel confident enough to fly there alone. I’ve found him cheap flights and cheap/safe accommodation just off Nathan Road, …. but he prefers to stay here in Seoul. ‘Travelling’ in the Far East costs exactly the same as ‘Killing Time’, .. especially when that time is being killed in a capital city like Seoul. Finding the cheap ‘Guest House’ will help, … but it seems such a waste not to visit the places that he wants to see while he’s in the region.

Behind the ‘Guest House’ is the Namsan Tower sitting atop Seoul’s largest hill, … here called a ‘Mountain’ and offering spectacular views of the city. I understand that I’m getting old, with both time and unhealthy living taking it’s toll, … but wandering the streets of Seoul was wearing me out. It was only from the heights of this mountain that I discovered the real reason for my weariness; … Seoul is a bloody huge City. It sprawls outwards and upwards for as far as the eyes can see or the mist will allow. From the vantage point of the tower I can retrace the routes that I’ve walked, …. it looks spectacular from here, .. but I think that my next task will be to investigate how the Seoul bus system works.

The fencing around the top of this mountain is covered with thousands of padlocks, .. all sizes, shapes and colours. Each padlock has an inscription, a message of love or loss, …… they are locked onto the fencing forming a spectacular mosaic the likes of which I have never before seen. Signs ask visitors not to add new locks to the already overloaded fences, .. but the people pay little attention. Seoul reminds me of Singapore, … safe, clean and new. I feel that fixing new locks to this fencing against the specific instructions of the authorities is as close to anarchy as it gets here, …… and that’s not a bad thing at all.

('Blogger' will not allow me to upload photographs today, ... I'll try next time)

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