Thursday, January 22, 2015

Weekend (5.11.13 - 5.12.13): The Sadang Outdoor Flea Market & 2013 Lotus Lantern Parade

While I made a couple of long-ass videos, it turns out I never made a post about the 2013 Lotus Lantern Festival.

Before going to watch it, Si and I went to the Sadang Outdoor Flea Market, the largest of its kind in Korea:

These dairy cart adjummas are pretty common where there's a lot of foot traffic.

You can get just about anything there, from used electronics, knives, and name-brand cosmetics to knockoff handbags, vintage dresses and decorative antiques. There were also stalls for crafts that kids could do, handmade accessories, soaps, fans, and more, all for low prices.

Later that night, I met up with a number of women I worked with and some of their friends in Jongno to watch the annual lantern parade. Drinking made it pretty entertaining.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Cute Shit: The Thanks Nature Sheep Café

This was going to be sort of a tribute assortment of whatever cute photos I haven't posted from Korea yet, but I ended up making it to the sheep café on Christmas Eve, so bam.

It's right by the main gate of Hongik University, but I'd somehow never been. The older middle-aged Korean guy who runs it has, as far as I can tell, at least 4 pet sheep that he loves dearly, and it's totally adorable. It's called the Thanks Nature Café, and if you find their page on Facebook you can see all kinds of cute pictures, like a recent one of one of the sheep getting a bath.

While I have no idea why sheep seem to be a Christmassy thing in Korea (which I only noticed this year; it's just a coincidence that the last time I met Takako was on X-mas Eve), they are definitely a novelty and rarity, existing on a single farm in Gangwon provice that families take road trips to see. It's not far from where the 2018 Winter Olympics are going to be held, in the middle of nowhere. I guess it's kind of like how cheese was only introduced to Korea in 1967 and just never took. 

Anyway, I had thought the sheep would be wandering around inside the café itself, like how it is with dog and cat cafés, but they actually live in a pen outside, which is surrounded by plants and covered by a series of clear umbrellas. 

They nom everything, like goats, including the wooden sides of their pen, the metal bars of their little air-conditioned house and each others' reindeer antler headbands.

-stares at tree-

-sniffs tree-

-noms tree-

-stares at metal bars-
-noms metal bars-

So, you know, it'd probably be pretty bad if they had them inside, where they'd surely be wreaking havoc nomming chair legs and compromising structural integrities, sticking their dumb heads into expensive handbags, et cetera.

And here's the Sheep Whisperer himself:

They way their craned their heads back and rolled them around to see him and follow him was a little like something out of The Exorcist, but very endearing.

Oh, and I read a blog post that said the café's waffles are underwhelming, but I had a yuzu yogurt smoothie, Takako had fruit tea, and both were delicious. If you're in Seoul and all about the cute cafe culture, be sure to hit this one after the Hello Kitty Café.