found! not lost blog

“Instructions for living a life: Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it.” ― Mary Oliver

Planning a family vacation to Korea

{Seoul at night, view of Lotte Hotel}

This summer we will celebrate my mother-in-law’s 70th birthday. For her gift, she asked our family to travel with her to Seoul, South Korea. She grew up and lived there until her early 20’s, when she came to the U.S. as a newlywed with her husband who was starting his medical residency here. My MIL has long wanted to take us to Korea, because even though his parents are both first generation immigrants, my husband has never been to visit their homeland. His mom goes back almost yearly, but he never had much desire. Then there’s me, an adopted Korean-American, who came to the States at just four months old. I’ve never been back because, despite my parents’ encouragement, I never had much interest either (I know, what was wrong with us?!).

When we finally had interest as adults, we were inconvenienced by the fact we had little babies to contend with on the 20-hour flight. So, fast forward seven years, it is finally time. I’m still dreading the day-long flights and jarring time-zone leap, but I know it will be worth it. We are so excited about what we will see and do, and to meet some of my husband’s extended family that he has never even met himself. Then, of course, there’s the food. My MIL is an excellent cook and she’s introduced our family to lots of great Korean dishes (we love to make mandoo at home). I’m certain the local cuisine will be a big highlight of the trip.

But, I’m also eager to see the big city of Seoul and the culture of the country. I’m told it’s very modern, less industrial than it was even 15 years ago, and somewhat Westernized too, but there are still so many interesting differences in the way people do things and some amazing historical sites to visit too. Another great thing about this trip is I’m just along for the ride. Usually, I’m the family vacation planner – not that I mind, I enjoy doing it – but this time my MIL has done the heavy lifting because she is most familiar with the area and where to stay, visit, etc. So, she’s got us set up at Lotte Hotel in Songpa-Gu Seoul (which I think is near Gangnam — subject of the infamous YouTube dance video) and is next to Lotte World, a Korean amusement park for the kids. Then, we’ll move on to the Somerset Palace in Susong-dong, Jongno-gu, so we can see the sights around that part of Korea.

So stay tuned! Later this summer I’ll be sure to share some fun pictures and stories from our international adventure.


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This entry was posted on June 1, 2013 by in adventures and tagged , , , .
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