Thursday, 19 July 2018

Got a Stopover In Korea? Go Shopping in Seoul!

I have toured friends in record-breaking time around Seoul! Knowing Seoul like the back of my hand, so to speak, I draw up a route in my mind that included the tourist spots need to be visited by any visitor and a timetable that fits within their free time before heading back to the Incheon International Airport.

On my first trip, I successfully toured my friend Maria around Seoul for five hours!  Then, another friend Jean came over for a stopover and I toured him, too, within five hours!

But this time, another friend Judy Ann is asking me for a suggestion. She'll be flying from the US to the Philippines and will have a stopover at Incheon Airport for about 12 hours. Her flight will arrive early morning at Incheon Airport and her connecting flight will leave early evening. So, she's planning to go shopping in Seoul between 6AM and 3PM. 

Just what Maria and Jean did before during their layover at the Incheon International Airport, Judy Ann will simply present her passport and her boarding pass (for her connecting flight) to the Immigration officer before she's allowed to leave the Airport. But I do emphasize that the decision to allow a passenger to leave the Incheon International Airport rests solely on the Immigration officers.

Here it is:

SUGGESTED ITINERARY/INSTRUCTIONS (I added links to my BLOGS related to the instructions):


           (The bus stop in front of the Dongdaemun 
                    Design Plaza or DDP)

1. Take Airport Bus 6702 from Incheon Airport and get off at the Dongdaemun Design Plaza bus stop. If you want to have your morning coffee in Dongdaemun, there are few cafés in the area. The ride from the airport up to Dongdaemun may take more than an hour. (Read this AIRPORT BUS BLOG.)

  • Exchange a few US$ to Korean at the airport in order to buy a bus ticket at the ticket booth, depending on how much you're going to spend. 
  • The bus ticket may cost about KRW16,000 one-way; coffee about KRW 5,000; lunch about KRW 10,000; a bag at Dongdaemun about KRW 10,000-40,000. Purses are as cheap as KRW 7,000.
  • Small shops and market stalls only accept cash; cosmetic shops accept credit cards.
  • Currency exchange stalls in Dongdaemun and Myeongdong tend to give better rates than banks at the airport.
  • At the airport's information desk, ask where you can find the bus ticket booth, the gate number where you can wait for the bus, and the bus departure time. The first Bus 6702 leaves at 4:56AM for Seoul.
  • Wait at the designated bus stand for Bus 6702; it will swing by and stop for a minute to pick up passengers.
  • Show the bus driver your bus ticket.
  • If he asks you where you will be getting off, just tell him 'dongdehmoon-dee-jja-yin-pla-jja'. That's how 'Dongdaemun Design Plaza' would sound if written and read in Korean. 
  • There's a red bell above your seat at the bus. 
  • Press the red bell if you're getting off. (Read this AIRPORT BUS BLOG to find out about the red bell.)
  • Once you see the spaceship-looking building, that's the DDP and you need to get off!

Here's the online info on the airport bus: https://www.airport.kr/ap_lp/en/tpt/pblctpt/busstoinft1/busstoinft1.do



2. Visit NPH Bag Market behind MaxStyle Building, which is to your left if you're facing the Dongdaemun Design Plaza. The bag market is on the ground floor and basement of NPH Building, opens at 9PM and closes at noon the next day, and is closed on Sundays. 

  • Use your charm, if you want to haggle at the bag market, especially if you're buying more than one bag. (Read this NPH BAG MARKET BLOG.)
  • Always bear in mind that you will probably hand-carry these bags on the plane. So, make sure you're within your limit at the end of your shopping day.

3. Visit the Dongdaemun Design Plaza (opens 10AM and closes at 7PM). You can go around the DDP and inside the DDP. Behind the DDP is a garden full of the interesting LED white flowers. Read these blogs about the DDP and WHITE LED FLOWERS.

http://www.ddp.or.kr/main?hl=en_US

NOTE: There's a tourist information booth in front of GoodMorning City mall building, near Exit 14 of the Dongdaemun Culture and History Park Station in case you want to know more about the area or have questions about directions, etc.


             (Tourist information booth in front of 
                  GoodMorning City building)

4. Lunch around the Dongdaemun area. There's also a fast food restaurant on the ground floor of Doota.

5. Take the subway at the Dongdaemun Culture and History Park Station. Get on the Blue Line 4 and get off at Myeongdong Station (2 stops from where you are). You can buy a subway ticket from a ticketing machine inside the station. Be prepared with your Korean won cash.


       (Upon getting out of Exit 6, this alley leads 
           to the Myeongdong shopping center)

6. At Myeongdong Station, head out from Exit 6. At the exit, turn left and you'll see alleys upon alleys of cosmetic shops, clothes, cafés, souvenirs, and others. Make sure to ask for 'samples' when you buy cosmetic or skin products. 

NOTE: Do remember that you may have to hand-carry all the things you have shopped for, which means NO LIQUIDS!

NOTE: If you see a team of two people wearing RED jackets, they are tour guides from whom you can ask tourist information or directions.

7. Try the food stalls along the Myeongdong streets. (Read this blog on Myeongdong's STREET FOOD).

8. Visit the MYEONGDONG CATHEDRAL. It is located on the other side of Myeongdong, just a short walk from the busy center.

9. Visit the Seoul Global Cultural Center in Myeongdong for photo-op in Korean traditional costume and for other Korean experience activities. It's on the 5th floor of M-Plaza.

The Seoul Global Cultural Center was the venue of the Filipino Christmas party hosted by the Philippine Women's Club last December 2017. Also, I always hang out at this center whenever I am in Myeongdong because it's a quiet place, they have a strong wi-fi and very friendly staff! I remember giving them dried mangoes once to show them my appreciation.

For more info:
https://www.seoulculturalcenter.com/faqs/

NOTE: Do ask the RED JACKETS for the location of the airport bus stop near Exit 8 of Myeongdong Station. (Read this blog about the RED JACKETS.)


10. For the airport bus going back to the airport, go the airport bus stop a few meters from Exit 8 of Myeongdong Station. Earlier, you went out of Exit 6. Had you walked straight, instead of turning left, you would have ended up at Exit 8. 
         (Airport bus stop for the bus going back 
                     to Incheon Airport)

At the bus stop, wait for any of these bus numbers: 6001 (KRW 15,000), or Bus 6015 (KRW 15,000). Any of these will take you back to Incheon Airport. Be prepared with your EXACT change of KRW 15,000 as the driver DOES NOT have a change. Drop the money inside a plastic box upon entering the bus. (This stop also includes Bus 6021. Do not ride that bus number).

This airport bus stop is in front of KB Bank, and a few meters from a pedestrian lane a Tour Les Jours bakery.

Note to Judy Ann: Tell the airport bus driver you will be getting off at TERMINAL 2. Upon arriving at Incheon Airport, the first stop is Terminal 1, then Terminal 2.

                          *   *   *   *   *

Anyone can use these instructions during a stopover at Incheon Airport, but ALWAYS make sure you have ENOUGH TIME to go to Seoul and shop. 

Because other than your shopping or sightseeing, you have to make enough time for your ride back to Incheon Airport (about 90 minutes), queuing at security and Immigration (about 30 or more depending on passenger traffic, and your walk to your plane's assigned departure gate for boarding.

Do let me know if any of you have questions.

Have fun! :-)

PS. Thanks to map.daum.net for the street-level views I used as screenshots!

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

The Kabayao Family Quartet And An Evening Of Enchanting Music in Seoul


           (The Kabayao Family and Jimmy Tagala, Jr. 
             at the Philippine Embassy in Seoul)

I was in Grade 5 at Don Bosco Technical Institute in Victorias City, Philippines, when I first heard him play. He was on the stage of our school's gymnasium playing the violin while his wife was on the piano accompanying him. He played classical music pieces as well as popular compositions. He also gave us lessons about the violin and music tempos, which I appreciated as, at that time, I was taking piano lessons during the weekends.  

             (The Kabayao Family, Jimmy Tagala,
                    and Ambassador Luis Cruz)

                   (Maestro Gilopez Kabayao)

Our school's visitors that day were the internationally renowned violinist, Gilopez Kabayao, and his wife and pianist, Corazon Pineda-Kabayao. Their visit was part of their campaign to bring classical music to everyone in the countryside.

Looking back, I think all of the students enjoyed the afternoon's mini-concert, not only because of this special occasion but also because everyone was out of their classrooms like it was recess! Any reason to be out of the classroom was always a cause to celebrate! Ha-ha-ha!

                 (The Kabayao Family Quartet)
       (Jimmy Tagala, Jr. competed in the prestigious Seoul International Music Competition in 2012)

After the mini-concert, when we returned to our classroom, Miss Rebecca Maroma, our English teacher, asked us to write something about the musical performance. I remember writing three paragraphs with a few sentences and with the words 'excellent''magnificent', and 'music that can lull you to sleep' finding their way into my essay.

A few days after that, Miss Maroma told me and my mom that the Maestro picked three essays written by the students about his visit; one was mine! He wanted to get the original copies but since it wasn't allowed, Miss Maroma gave him photocopies instead.


    (Jimmy meeting the members of the diplomatic 
           corps who became his fans that night)


And in April 2012, Maéstro Gilopez Kabayao, accompanied by his family and a protegé, held another concert at the Philippine Embassy in Seoul, South Korea, with the diplomatic corps as the audience!

And on that spring evening, the grade school student, whose essay caught the Maestro's attention, was finally reunited with him!


    (Ambassador Luis Cruz and Cultural Attaché Mylo Fausto hosted the Kabayao Family concert)

The Kabayao Family came to Korea in the spring of 2012 because Jimmy Tagala, Jr., the maestro's protegé, competed at the Seoul International Music Competition. And thanks to the Philippine Ambassador Luis Cruz and the Embassy's cultural attaché Mylo Fausto, we were treated to an enchanting evening of beautiful music.

Joining the Maestro and Mrs. Kabayao were their daughters Sicilienne and Farida, who were are both accomplished violinists themselves. 

          (The Kabayao Family Quartet, Jimmy and 
            their Filipino audience members)

With the Kabayao family playing classical compositions like Brahms' Scherzo and Sonata No. 3 in D Minor for violin and piano, Mendelssohn's Trio in D Major, and Wieniawski's Legende, and Jimmy with Ravel's Tzigane, you could just imagine the enjoyment of the Filipinos and the international guests. 

One of the pieces that I especially liked that evening was the Kabayao Family Quartet's interpretation of Nais Ko, a Ryan Cayabyab composition popularized by Basil Valdez.

                (The Maestro signing my copy of 
                        his coffee table book)

Gilopez Kabayao is a legend in Philippine music. He had played in famous concert halls of the world, including the Carnegie Hall where he was the first Filipino to do so. He has volumes of violin recordings and was a Magsaysay Awardee in 1972 (the Magsaysay Award is the Asian version of the Nobél Prize).

As they say, music brings everyone together. And that evening, music brought the Maestro and that grade school student together again.


And decades after the Maestro received a grade school student's essay about his music, this time, it was the other way around...

       My Gilopez Kabayao coffee table book with a                dedication from the Maestro!

Friday, 29 June 2018

Question of the Day: A Social Media Experiment on Facebook

I have read articles about how one's personality, attitude, or even how the current state of your life reflect your posting and comments on social media.

So I decided to conduct my own social media experiment to test the theories.

Blasted from the Past
Last year, in October 2017, I posted on a Facebook group page of the citizens of a local Philippine city a photo of iron railings on a city sidewalk, blocking the path of pedestrians.

I posted the time and date of the photo, and why the scene was wrong on so many levels.



Hours after that, the city officials took care of the problem and posted explanations, which the citizens were thankful for. Hmm. Those city officials were probably just enjoying their airconditioned offices and were not to be bothered by whatever was happening on the city's streets.

Well, we, the citizens of the streets and netizens in social media, have to, to borrow Anderson Cooper's words, "keep them honest". We have to make them accountable. After all, we pay for their salaries.

But during the weekend, when I saw a table (yes, a home furniture!) blocking a sidewalk that is used by the elderly, women with babies and kids, and everyone else, I immediately thought how thoughtless that person/persons who put it there!

The sidewalk is a public property that should be free of any hindrance at all times as it's used by pedestrians.

So, an idea came to mind. Let me test the members of Victoriahanon Kami Facebook group as to find out who are smart enough to see what's wrong with the picture. 



Question of the day
Titled 'Kuwestiyon ob da di', a rephrased 'question of the day' written as if spoken in a hard Hiligaynon accent, my post included a street photograph of a sidewalk where the said table sat. This sidewalk was along the national highway.

I took the photo because, at first, I wondered why is there an impediment on the sidewalk where pedestrians, including children, persons with disabilities, pregnant women, mothers carrying babies, and elderly people pass.

While the table sat there blocking the pedestrians that pass, the person or persons who put the table there in the first place just DID NOT CARE.

So, five days after I posted the photo, it gained about 175 likes and lots of comments, which I categorized into three: (1) comments from people who just wanted to have fun as the question posed seemed like a joke; (2) negative comments from pessimists and people living miserable lives; and (3) comments from people responsible for the table being there or those who knew the people actually responsible.

1. Comments from people who just wanted to have fun! 


As I asked as to why the table was there people came up with funny answers to the joke.

All of it was in Hiligaynon though.









2. Negative comments, which probably reflect the commenter's pessimism or his/her miserable life.



3. I think these comments are from people responsible, or people who knew those responsible for the table being on the sidewalk.



These are (above) the angriest of all comments, which made me think he had something to do with the table or the house next to that sidewalk. Hmm. If I'm right, shouldn't he be thinking about the safety of the pedestrians passing by the sidewalk of the house, not about the post?



This comment (above) says, "Ging, the table outside  your house".




This comment above, I think, calls out the person living there. 


This commenter (above) probably had no idea about public safety. She said "it's a small issue". But what if I told her that I personally know of an elderly lady who regularly passes through this sidewalk with her female alalay almost every morning to hear Mass at the parish church, which is a few meters from this spot. 

The table blocking the sidewalk prevents the two people from walking side by side, forcing the alalay to walk behind the elderly lady, and not right next to her to hold her and keep her balanced and safe.

No winner
On my post, I said the best answer would win a prize: a used table. Ha-ha-ha!

But sadly, nobody won here. Why?

Nobody got my message about public safety. The people who put that table didn't care about the safety of pedestrians passing as long as the table served their interest. The sidewalk is a public property for everyone's use but it seemed it was for their family's personal use anytime.

I also learned that we comment on social media based on how we wanted things to be. Some people living a good life don't care or are sensitive about other people's situations. As long as they could comment, that's it.

I also learned that people who are negative, or whose lives may not be a rosy, comment negatively or want to drag other people down. Although I am sure it's not true about all people with problems.

So, let me ask you this: if you saw that post, how would you have commented?

Or better yet, what was your actual comment? 

PS. 

I also posted this on the same Facebook group. I was trying to help the local tourism team that doesn't seem to know how to promote the city on social media. This post has at least 900 likes as of this writing with lots of commenters agreeing to my suggestion. They have yet to take action. :-(

Wednesday, 13 June 2018

My Lupang Hinirang's 800 Years of Missing History Lessons


"Lupa ng araw, ng luwalhati't pagsinta, buhay ay langit sa piling mo..."

Yes, for me, a Filipino born in the middle islands (sounds like LOTR-Middle-Earth-ish) of the Philippines, my understanding of my region's history changed over the past year. 

I didn't know about the important history lessons I should have learned in grade school. Although I remember doing good in my Social Studies studies, I realized the teachers didn't teach us regional history but only the history dictated by the events, scandals, and wars that happened in Manila and its neighboring provinces.

Growing up, I didn't know the local heroes of the Negros and Iloilo Provinces. I would only recognize the statues of Jose Rizál (with an overcoat and wavy, pomaded hair) and Andres Bonifació (in pedal pushers, long-sleeved camisa, and the mandatory bladed weapon whose length usually depended on the budget of the statue-maker). These two are the most ubiquitous of national hero statues in public plazas; it's either one or the other, or, if it's a rich city, both and some statues of local dead personalities usually related to the sitting mayor. :-)

So what I did during the past months was to travel around and discover the local history of my region. 


And where to start? How about 1220 CE when, about that time, ten datus from Borneo landed in Panay Island?

During that period, in the early 1220's CE, ten datus from Borneo fled to Aninipay, the ancient name of Panay Island, to escape the political vendetta of a Bornean rajah. The datus, their families, servants, and followers were allowed to live in the lowlands after negotiating with the Aetas living their.

The negotiation was completed with the 'Barter of Panay': in exchange for the lowlands, the Aetas, led by Datu Pulpulan, were given a golden salakot and a golden necklace that was so long, it reached the ground. The necklace's name was 'Manangyad', from the word 'sangyad' that means 'it touches the ground'. This word still exists in the present-day Hiligaynon, the language spoken in Iloilo and Negros Occidental Provinces (one of the six languages I speak, ehem).

And this Barter of Panay is annually celebrated in, where else, in Panay Island! The cities of Kalibo in Aklan Province and Iloilo in Iloilo Province hold two of the most colorful, best-costumed festivals in all of the Philippines: the Ati-Atihan Festival every January.

When I was in high school I got to attend the Dinagyang Festival, the ati-atihan festival in Iloilo, but last year, my sister and I were able to attend again the Dinagyang Festival, which was a weekend full of revelry, fun, and performances by the participating tribes, representing the different areas and high schools in Iloilo City. Not only did I have a great time, I also learned a lot about Panay Island's history through the festival. 

The ten datus from Borneo and the leaders of the aets (or ati), Datu Pulpulan and his son, Datu Marikudo, would have been proud and probably would have also enjoyed ogling at the colorful costumes and watching the performances of the tribes who portrayed them. They would have been amazed at how tribal costumes and dances evolved over 800 years. And who knows? Had they competed, we would have been able to see authentic tribal wear and jewelry, including the famed golden salakot and the 'Manangyad'

These ten datus later created the 'Confederation of Madja-as', an ancient form of government with the datus sharing equal power. This proves that even before the Spaniards came, there existed a ruled civilization in the islands with its own government, culture, writing, costumes, and of course, original recipes of homemade dishes!

But if the ati-atihan festival is based on history, the religious sadsad held at the San Jose de Placer parish church during the festival weekend is based on religion. It was the most expressive display of religious fervor I have ever seen with everyone energetically participating by dancing with their own replicas of the Santo Niño. Both the Catholic tradition and the church have a long history. The San Jose de Placér church's site was founded in 1607, and its belfries built in the 1890s, while the devotion to the Santo Niño started with the arrival of Magellan in 1521. 


And about 30 minutes by car from San Jose de Placér parish church is also a historic town of Santa Barbara, which was the site of the first-ever raising of the Philippine flag outside of Luzon on November 17, 1898, led by General Martin Teofiló Delgado. The symbolic raising of the flag created the revolutionary government of the Visayan Islands against Spain, whose governor-general in Iloilo City surrendered on December 24, 1898, to General Delgado's forces.  

And if the Ilonggos were busy planning their revolution, so were the Negrenses across the Iloilo Strait.

On November 5, 1898, in Silay City in the Negros Island, a group of brave Negrenses led by General Aniceto Lacson, also revolted against Spain. He and his revolutionaries successfully took over the Spanish government the next day. Silay, a charming city rich in history, culture, and arts, was home to renowned artists. Its most famous mansion, the Balay Negrense, built in 1897, was owned by the Gaston Family and is a popular tourist spot in the city. 

Silay City is also rich in culinary heritage which it celebrates with a food fair twice a year. Its present-day San Diego Pro-Cathedral was built in 1925, but its original structures of bamboos and local materials were built in 1776. The patron saint, San Diego de Alcala, died in 1463 in Alcalá de Henares in Spain, the hometown of Miguel de Cervantes and a place I once visited. 

Although Bacolod City is the capital of Negros Occidental, Silay is richer in terms of history, art,  culture, and culinary heritage. Bacolod City, though, boasts of the biggest festival on the island: the Masskara Festival that was first organized in 1980 to uplift the Negrense spirit in the sugar crisis of the 1980s and the tragedy of the sinking of Don Juan, a passenger ship that ferried people from Bacolod to Manila, and back. It collided with an oil tanker and sank while it was on its way to Bacolod City from Manila on April 22,1980. Almost 200 passengers died in the tragedy, including those whose bodies were recovered and those who are still missing. A high school classmate and his family died in that tragedy.

Well, over the past year, I have learned more about my region's history than I would have at school. During my grade school years, we were only taught of the history that transpired in Manila and its surrounding regions. This was probably because the textbooks were published by writers from Manila using the history of national interest. 

But I would have appreciated it if the people in the Philippine Department of Education included the regional history in the local school's curriculum. Then, I would not have been ignorant as to who were Aniceto Lacson, Juan Araneta (I actually had a classmate by that name; he must be his ancestor), Martin Teofiló Delgado, or Datu Pulpulan. And I would have known Datu Puti was a real Bornean datu and not just a vinegar for cooking. Ha-ha-ha!

Traveling around these islands, my own lupang hinirang, my chosen land, this past year has enriched my understanding of its landscape, both popular and historical, although I still need to understand deeper as to why things are what they are now.

And although I journeyed far into the land and across the sea, I also found a few pieces of history closer to my heart. Some photos in my mom's photo albums have also opened my eye to not only what has passed, but also what she has seen. 

From a 1940 photograph that literally painted a thousand words, (well, not really, only 660 words for that blog), to an endearing message on a postcard postmarked 1958, and to black-and-white photographs that tell very colorful stories.

So, from 1220 CE to present, about 800 years, that was the rich history I have learned so far. If the past year taught me that much, I wonder how much I'd learn in the years ahead!

How about you? 

How much of your region's history do you know?

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Bundang Bonding: Lunchee, Coffee, Spree!


I had always heard of the place 'Bundang' from Korean friends for years, but I didn't exactly know where it was. All I knew was it's down south of Seoul and was a popular place to live in. My friends Vanji, James, and their respective families used to live there.

I later learned that Bundang is an area in Seongnam City, Gyeonggi Province, and it is where our friend, Kristine, and her family currently live!

So, on a free day, Kristine invited us to her neighborhood in Jeonja-dong, Bundang, which was just right next to Jeonja-dong Café Street, a street full of coffee shops, restaurants, and small boutiques. 


(Arriving at Jeonja Station and 
crossing to Tancheon, or Tan Stream)

And since none of us has been there, we figured it was the best way to discover Bundang: head down there and be toured by Kristine around her neighborhood!

Jeonja-dong is less than 20 minutes from Gangnam Station via Jeonja Station (Sinbundang Red Line). Kristine met us at Exit 5 of Jeonja Station, where we started our tour.

                 (NIIED is the National Institute 
                   for International Education)

Just across the subway station is Tancheon, or Tan Stream, a small waterway that, would you believe, flows all the way through Jamsil in Seoul and into the Han River? So, if I walked north from the Tancheon in Bundang, I'd find myself in Daechi-dong in Gangnam-gu in Seoul where I usually play tennis at their sports fields on weekends! 

This is what I also love about Korea, the local governments develop the streams and waterways for the locals to use for biking, running, or simply strolling. Even in my neighborhood in Dongdaemun-gu, we have our own Jeongneung Stream with rubberized paths and complete with ducks and fish!

            (Colored installations in Jeonja-dong)


After a quick visit to the Tancheon, we continued our tour around the streets and alleys of Jeongja-dong to look for a place for lunch.

Along the way, we stopped by the National Institute for International Education, whose front yard was full of interesting installations.

We found Granny Saloon, a restaurant at a creative space-slash-alley decorated with giant chess pieces and colorful artworks. Recommended by Kristine, it specializes in dishes with meatballs. And having walked around Jeonja-dong for about an hour, my meatballs dish was perfect for my grumbling tummy.

                       (A giant chess piece!)

(My meatball lunchee with rice and fried noodles)

But before we headed to coffee and dessert, Kristine brought us to Naver's headquarters. Yes, Naver as in Korea's top search engine company. Although it has a café wing, we visited its library that was 'green', literary and figuratively. 

                    (Can you read my mind?)

It's a huge library with bookshelves topped with plants while its clear walls let natural light in to conserve energy. It has long tables, comfortable armchairs, and sofas for everyone to use. Gosh, it even has tall lamps in case you want to light your own corner! If only this library were next to my apartment, I'd be here almost every day! 


        (The plants on top of bookshelves probably 
           aid one's study as they provide more 
                       oxygen to the place.)


                              (Quiet, please!)

After quietly roaming the library (there were a few people reading and studying!), we headed back to the main street in search of coffee and dessert!

The Jeonja-dong neighborhood is a mix of office buildings and apartment complexes. It has a lot of schools, which I think make it attractive for families with grade school and high school kids. 

This Bundang visit was long overdue and I was glad I made the trip with friends.

And its café street definitely provides a relaxing corner for the residents (as well as visitors!) to hang out during weekends, while its Tancheon provides another option for those who want to stretch their legs and exercise as well as a space for parents and kids to run around.  

(This café in Jeonja-dong was a part of the location shoot for two drama series: 'Descendants of the Sun' and 'The Lonely and Great God - Goblin')

As our final stop, we settled in a small coffee shop (not a franchise) at the café street that also served different yummy cakes!  

Here, we finally rested our legs, chatted some more, and ended our fun tour of Kristine's Jeonja-dong neighborhood.

            (Kristine and her tourist friends having 
          dessert and coffee in Jeonja-dong Café Street)

Thanks to Kristine, I have finally been to Bundang

And importantly, I now know why it is a popular place to live with an even more popular spot to hang out! :-)