We had another amazing day today. And it was a little bit cooler. A little bit. Still very humid but not nearly as bad as it has been.
We started by giving our legs a little rest and just went for an easy walk near the area where we are staying which was refreshing and restful this AM. We also managed to sleep in until 5:30 so I think we’re slowly figuring out this time change thing. We also got to talk to my parents and the boys this morning which is always really good. The boys were busy being Ninjas and I think my dad was the “bad guy” so I don’t think they are missing us too much yet.
We headed out this morning and met up with some friends at Chungdong First Methodist Church. It is actually not only the first Methodist church built in Korea 130 years ago, but was actually the first Protestant church built and established in Korea 130 years ago. There were 2 ministers from the US that landed in Korea on the same day from the same ship, one a Methodist and the other a Presbyterian, and they both started churches just a few blocks from each other (with a major palace in between them) but the Methodist church was the first building built 130 years ago. Our friends are methodist ministers in Indiana and they had found the church online and so we went to their English speaking service. We really enjoyed the service and felt very welcomed.
From there we had planned on heading down to the river area but we had to walk by the palace that was in the area and there were all sorts of things going on at the Palace so we stopped and watched. The Palace was Deoksung and it is known as the Palace of Virtuous Longevity. While we were watching the changing of the guard a girl approached us and asked if she could give us a free tour and practice her English with us. We jumped at the chance and before long we were busy exploring the palace. It is an odd palace because there are many of the traditional Korean buildings but then the Emperor was concerned that Western Culture would not accept him or value him and his country so he had two very large western style buildings commissioned and built on the palace grounds. It was an odd mismatch.
We ate some lunch and then headed to the subway and headed to the river. It was the same park that we ran in yesterday. We saw a number of people riding rented bikes but could not find the rental stations for ever. We wandered back and forth a lot but finally found them. Clint and I decided to rent a tandem bike. Our friend Amy got a single and her husband Anthony and their son Jackson also got a tandem bike. This was an experiment for Clint and I as we tend to not do the best in things like canoes and kayaks where we are forced to work together, but actually I sat in the back and Clint steered and we did great. I giggled a lot at the beginning but the path was gorgeous along the river even though it was really hazy. After an hour of riding around we returned our bikes and wandered over to a huge splash pool that was there with tons of kids and families playing in it. The water felt great and helped cool us off some.
We had initially planned on checking out the fish market but we were all hot and tired and not really feeling like checking out stalls and stalls of different fish, so Amy suggested checking out one of the markets. We headed back to the subway and went to Insadong. It’s just fun to walk through the market and see all that there is. We got some chicken kabobs again for dinner and a cinnamon bread thing. We finally called it a night and headed back. Tomorrow we meet our son!