Sunday, September 25, 2016

September 25, 2016

Someone asked if we feel safe here.  Yes, we live about a mile from the presidential palace and there's always police around.  This group was standing along the sidewalk we use to walk to the office.

They bring them in by the bus load and they stand there for hours.

Plus, there are crossing guards when the children are going to school.

Tuesday was a temple day for us.  We had a beautiful blue sky!  Afterwards, we had a nice Indian food lunch with Elder and Sister Cannon.

On Wednesday, we were able to pick up our foreign registration cards from the government office.  Since we were close to the shopping area, we went back to check on the tie shops that were closed the other day.

Yup, we found a few ties!  Most of them are $3.00.  This is a wholesale shop, but they will sell to individuals too.  There's any color, plus lots of cute designs of animals etc.  And there are button and sequin shops all over too.  Alan got some that have Korean language on them (Hangul.)

They told him at the temple that his ties were too dark.  That he should wear a lighter color tie to the temple, so we found some that are OK.

We have transfer week coming up, so we've been getting ready for that all week.

Alan & Elder Cannon went to help the sisters at one of the apartments on Saturday morning.  Then, we took off to do some sight seeing.

When we got out to the street to head to the subway, we heard some noise, and this parade was coming down the street towards us.

This one had wheels, but in real life, I think they carried them

One guy was talking on his cell phone

We don't know what the event was, but they had some nice costumes!

Anyway, we were headed to one of the palaces around here.

It is Changdeokgung Palace and Secret Garden

The original palace was built in the 1405 then destroyed by fire during the Japanese invasion 1592-1598 and rebuilt in 1610.  There are several buildings here in the complex.

We had an English tour of The Secret Garden.  This area was only for the royalty to enjoy.

She explained that the square shape of the pond represents the earth and the round island in the center represents the sky.  There was a little dock to fish from that represented men in between the earth and the sky.

This pavilion was a library

The top of this one has a dragon design.  It represents royalty.

It was a warm day.  It had several areas to go up and down, so we were all getting tired.

This is the only one with a rice thatched roof.

There are carvings on this stone naming the place

The living quarters have no color.  That was reserved for the palaces and pavilions.

They think this tree is about 700 years old!

Sunday, September 18, 2016


We had a couple of friendly reminders of Japan this week.  The other day, some brothers from the church came by to see the office.  One of them was from the Tokyo office.  He was surprised to see us.  He helped us get the new computers and printer hooked up in Sendai.  It was fun to see him again!

We also had an earthquake(!)  I thought there were no earthquakes in Korea.  But when we noticed some funny movements while we were sitting on the sofa, we wondered if it was a real earthquake, or something else???  I'm kind of glad it was a real earthquake.

Aren't these sisters adorable?  We had a holiday here called Chuseok.  It is a mid-autumn festival to remember your heritage and family.  Kind of like Thanksgiving?  (Some of the Korean missionaries made their phone calls home now instead of at Christmas.)  But since most everyone leaves town and all the stores are shut down, the missionaries don't have very many opportunities to work with people.  So one of the days was their day to do deep cleaning in their apartments.  The other day was a mission conference.  We had it on two different days, half of the mission each time.

We started at our own "Sacred Grove".  This is the location of the original mission home.  President Sonksen and some of our senior elders remember staying here back in the day.  (One of President's companions was Mack Wilburg from the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.)

Our heritage in the church all goes back to Joseph Smith and the Restoration.  The senior couples were asked to share their testimonies of the Book of Mormon.

Then we went up (and up and up) the mountain behind the office and sang "High on the Mountain Top".  After we caught our breath, that is.  

There's an amazing view up there.  This is part of the old wall around Seoul.

For lunch, Subway Sandwiches!

After lunch we learned about traditional Korean activities and played games like

Arm Wrestling

And jump rope!  And no one got hurt!  

We finished up by watching "Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration"

It was a great two days!

On Saturday, we went out to explore a different area.  A lot of the shops were closed due to the holiday.  But we still made a couple of good scores.  My friend Sheri would love shopping here!

We did see this old city gate Dongdaemun

This food court was seeing a lot of traffic.  We got some little sushi rolls of rice, carrots and pickles.

On Sunday night, we had a musical fireside on base.  Two of our elders are especially talented and have worked together on some special arrangements of hymns.  We were able to use a chapel on base.  We had a very good turn out.

One of our sisters sang also.  It was a wonderful night.