Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A Bright Red & Green

Well, December 1st has come and gone here in Korea, and I'm sad to note that I don't have an advent calendar to mark it with. I did see some today at a store in Times Square, however.

Times Square is a rather huge new multi-level mall/department store/CGV theatre complex in the Youngdo-po area, just south of Yeuido. It's big, and bright, and not all-together welcoming or warm, but we went there to get a little bit of Christmas shopping done after a nice dinner at Agra in Itaewon (nice restaurants being about the only reason I would willingly set-foot in that part of town, as a general rule).

I'm feeling pretty festive, as is Seoul. I'm looking forward to doing a bit more wandering about over the coming weeks, to check-out the decorations and such. That's part of Christmas for me, too. If Christmas is all about traditions, and my past was touched by crowded shops and twinkly lights, then such things are part of my Christmas traditions, too. I have to say though, Christmas is the first place I have seen upside-down Christmas trees for sale.

I remember a brief tradition among my sister and friends, back in the days of Bryan Adams and the Robin Hood soundtrack - shopping downtown Calgary through the plus-15s into TD Square, Eaton Centre, The Bay etc. on December 23rd, getting our shopping done and feeling all grown-up. Huh. I used to wonder at all of the stuff remaining on the shelves that late in the game, and wondering where it was all going to go. The amount of unwanted stuff a scant 2 days before the big day seemed almost criminal.

And then I came to Seoul. As the Lonely Planet suggests, Namdaemun Market alone has enough shirts, pants, jacket, and socks to feed the world. True dat. There's a lot of stuff here.

I thought I'd include a couple of shots of the Christmas decor available in the big shops. The above photo is form Homeplus, and the one below is from Modern House housewares in Times Square shopping center. I suppose one could go bananas decorating here, too, but I'm content with my tiny tree and lights around my window.

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