Tag Archive: chinese

Global Gathering, Take 2

This past weekend was the Global Gathering. The last one was in October or November, and it was such a big hit that they had another one earlier in the year. As last time, it was not well promoted.

Global Gathering 001Some ambassadors even showed up! At least that’s who we thought they were. Chinese guys in suits surrounded by cameras shaking hands with everyone at the Chinese stands. The Chinese stand was selling beet for 1,000W too!

Some places were not really selling cultural food, as one stand was selling Peach Ice Tea from Lipton containers and many were selling kebabs and Turkish Ice Cream. I did get some spring rolls, potato pattys, and fritters as well as a Brazilian drink (that should have some sort of rum but instead had vodka) and Mango Lassi.

There were some interesting cooking methods on display as well, such as solar and biking.

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For dancing and music, there was….

Global Gathering 027traditonal Korean–I’ve seen this plenty of times but it’s great to watch the hat dancers!Global Gathering 072

Brazilian martial arts–started slow but got interesting with this next pictureGlobal Gathering 079

Brazilian martial arts–hand stands!Global Gathering 097

Japanese–pretty slow but great costumesGlobal Gathering 101

Japanese–I was really impressed with this guy, that flag would weight a ton!Global Gathering 123

And this guy was really into the Japanese musicGlobal Gathering 143

Kenyan–looked like me drunk dancingGlobal Gathering 176

Ta-Kwan-do Global Gathering 188
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And finally, Ta-Kwan-do dancing and Break Dancing. I wish I could post the videos but I can’t figure it out (someone let me know how to!). The whole time my friends and I were talking about how amazing they are. Slow-motion kicks above their heads? I’d fall over. Back flips from standing on a hard floor? I’d be too scared to start and just land on my back. We also came to the conclusion that the reason Korea are the best at break dancing is because a lot of kids are raised doing Ta-Kwan-do.

There were also tons of photographs from the 1960s and 1970s vs today which showed how quickly Busan has developed.

Global Gathering 042 Global Gathering 043 Global Gathering 044 Global Gathering 046And, of course, plenty of cute things to take pictures with…or punch in the face.

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National Museum of Korea

The National Museum of Korea has lot’s of different areas and two entrances. If you go in though the West Gate the first thing you will see is the Snack area, then the Reflecting Pond  with a Pavilion. If you enter though the Main Gate you’ll see a Gateway Pond and then the Reflecting Pond.

Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 228From the Reflecting Pond you’ll go up flower lined stairs to the Entrance. On the right is the free entrance, and on the left is the entrance to the special exhibits, which are not free. I went in the free entrance to the main part of the Museum.

The first floor (ground floor) covers prehistory and ancient history, as well as medieval and early modern history.  There is also a Buddhist Preceptor Wallang and Ten Story Pagoda. Below are photos from prehistory and ancient history. (1) the earliest cave paintings found in Korea, in Ulsan, which shows what people ate and how they caught it; (2) a boat dating to 6,000 BC; (3) shells and rocks with faces; (4) stone daggers from the Bronze Age and was only possessed by a privileged minority and served as symbolic or ritual objects; (4) Bronze Knife-shaped Coins with the Chinese character ‘Ming’ written on the front; (5) the Buddhist Preceptor; (6) tombs in the shape of eggs; (7) and the Ten Story Pagoda.

Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 232Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 237 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 242 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 245 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 250 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 259 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 278Next are photos from Medieval and Early Modern History. (1) a roof statue of a beasts head; (2) Bundles of Celadon Vessels Loaded on a Cargo Boat; (3) A game board to teach girls how to be proper; (4) a map of Beijing; and (5) a map of the body for Acupuncture.

Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 283 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 287 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 300 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 302 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 304Next are Calligraphy and Paintings on the second floor.

Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 309 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 315And then donated works. There are 9 different galleries for people (or families) and one room for people who donated one item (individual donations). (1) A ‘lion’ like no other; and (2) A mold for a roof tile.

Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 324 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 332On the final and third floor there are sculptures and crafts, starting with Buddhist Sculptures and moving into vases.

Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 341 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 349 Caribbean Bay + DMZ + Seoul 364Lastly is Asian Art with art from: India and Southeast Asia, Central Asia, China, Sinan Shipwreck, and Japan. (1)  An Elephant God Statue from India; (2) A horse prepared for war which from afar I thought was a unicorn Pegasus…from China;(3) masks from Japan for theater.

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Shanghai in 8 hours

On my way to India, I had a layover from 12:55pm to 8:30pm–taking the time to get out of the airport and to where my friend wanted to meet plus the time to get back to the airport and the 2 hours to check in….it was really from 2:50pm to 6:30pm, and 3 hours and 40 minutes in Shanghai.

You CAN leave the airport in Shanghai if you are from certain countries if you have a layover that is less than 48/72 hours–if it’s longer I’d imagine you went there on purpose…really after 12 I think you’re there on purpose but on my way back it was 22 hours to make the flights super cheap. You can’t be coming from Hong Kong, stay in Shanghai for 48 hours and then go back to Hong Kong, have to go somewhere else so its really a layover and not a short trip. I don’t understand why the government doesn’t promote this more, since it really is just a great way for the country to make some tourism money. I’m not sure why else it exists.

Anyway, after you leave the airport, you can get on the metro easily and go anywhere! Both airports are on the green line and I went to Jing’an Temple to meet my friend (another English teacher) as she lives near there.  This took about an hour. At the airport stop (at least at mine, Pudong International) there are some weird decorations to let you know you’re in China. They were all in bad lighting, so my flash always popped up.

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Once getting off I could see that China was still all decked out for the Lunar New Year

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We went to lunch at Din Tai Fung which is famous from dumplings so we got the Mushroom ones and the Vegetable ones. My friend is a meat eater and said she liked the Mushroom ones because they were more ‘meat like’. We also got the most popular side dish which was sauteed greens in garlic. So good. There is a reason it’s the most popular. Service was a bit odd as we got everything separate, but it was busy. They have soy sauce and vinegar on the table for you to mix, and deliver very pretty ginger for you to use in your mix as well. You can watch the dumplings being made, but I’m not sure how anyone would know which are theirs.

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After that we walked though new Shanghai which is filled with sky scrapers. There was also a knock off market. I was quite surprised at how people just yelled what they were selling at you. We didn’t buy anything, but we went back on my return layover.

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We ended up at Peoples Square where parents advertise their unmarried ‘old’ children for wed. I put old in quotes because by American/Western standards they are not old, only about 25. The signs will list their age, height, likes and dislikes and other parents will make notes of things to show their children. I don’t think I saw any of the kids actually there. There is a separate area for people who are willing to accept non-Chinese nationalities.

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There is also an amusement park with some really unsafe looking rides…

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And of course Cherry Blossoms!

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Next we decided to walk to the waterfront to see the skyline. While we were walking it started to rain, but hardly enough to need an umbrella, but of course everyone pulled them out. I have a horrible fear of getting hit in the ey by an umbrella.

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When we got to the waterfront I remembered being there when I was 16 and we did a boat cruise. I was hoping my mom could go though those old pictures (not on my computer) and find one of me in Shanghai but she couldn’t. I guess I didn’t take many pictures of myself on the trip and relied on others, but if we had shared them, they would have sent them and we would have saved them, right?

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Realistically, the photos below was the only reminder that I was in fact, in China which is a ‘communist’ country.

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Next was the subway back to the airport, where my friend told me that I had, realistically, seen all of new Shanghai in one day–less than that!

Tokyo National Museum

The Tokyo National Museum is in Ueno Park near a fountain.

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There are many buildings but some are closed and some are just for special exhibits (I think, the signs were unclear). I went to the Asia part which had China (lots of it), India, Korea (medium amounts) and ‘other’ Including some Egyptian stuff like a Mummy! In this building they also have things you can play with that try to tell your luck and future. This building also has a terrace which is nice.

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The second building I went to (the main one) was Japanese art and was not overcrowded because they are only had ‘highlights’ out. nothing here really struck me here other than the warrior costumes and some intricate statues made of gold which I could not take photos, of course.

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