Sound of Vitality

Blowin up Haengsin-dong. Holla!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


I went to Itaewon on Saturday to check that out. First I took the bus to Ilsan. The bus driver looked like Yoko Ono and was wearing a huge pair of fake Dolce & Gabana sunglasses. The subway took some time but it's always good people watching. These Korean folk come into the cars with loudspeakers and hawk stuff like knit caps, or hose, or gloves. I saw a seemingly respectable business looking fellow drop a flask of booze out of his suit, too. He seemed nonplussed, picked it up and continued reading his newspaper.

Itaewon is wild - it's like little America. People speak English everywhere. My friend Carrie told me about an English language used bookstore, so that was my first stop. I spent about $70 on books and magazines. There is a main drag on the street where vendors set up on the sidewalk hawking counterfeit goods, so I walked up and down the street a few times and got some gloves, a fake New Era Cubs hat, and a knockoff Burberry wallet. There are dudes on the street everywhere trying to get you to buy a custom suit, so maybe I'll go back and do that next weekend. I'm tempted.

The side streets are real hilly and neat there, so I hiked around the back streets for awhile, and finally decided to head to a bar and have a couple beers while I read my New Yorker Magazine I bought. They had Guinness at the bar, which was good, and I stayed for a couple beers and headed back on the Metro back to my part of town again.

Here's the bookstore, 'What the Book?':

Here's a side street in Itaewon:

More pictures to come later this week.

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