Monday, August 15, 2011

Korean Liberation Day

Saturday night while we were walking someone handed us a flyer...normally in the States when someone tries to hand me a flyer, I say no thank you, but here they don't understand you when you say that. So, instead, I take the flyer. This particular flyer was advertising a celebration at the Korean War Memorial on Liberation Day which was yesterday. The War Memorial is not too far from our house (it's about a 30 minute walk) and we've driven by it several times (in taxis or buses). It's a place that I really wanted to go, but we just hadn't made it a priority yet. So, I thought this would be a perfect opportunity!
The flyer advertised a parade at 4:00, so we left shortly after 3:00, thinking we'd have time to get a spot along the parade route. Ha! This was no American parade! First of all, the place was CROWDED with Koreans!! There were people everywhere!! As foreigners, we were greeted enthusiastically and a group of teenagers who were in love with our kids stuck with us for about an hour showing us where to go and what to do. They took us to the booth to get the kids' faces painted. Kennedy got shy and wouldn't do it, but Cade sat patiently while a girl painted a star with angels' wings on his cheek. Then we went around to the booths where you could see different aspects of Korean culture such as traditional dress and traditional Korean rice cakes (nothing like you would imagine from the States. These are doughy and soft and you just about gag before you finally manage to swallow it...I don't like them; can you tell?). Then we finally got a glimpse of the "parade". Basically, there were marching bands and different performers down in an amphitheater and we watched it on a big screen hanging above them.
Everywhere we went, people wanted to take pictures of Cade and at one point, we even got interviewed about how we were feeling about the event. The War Memorial itself is amazing and we will definitely have to go back sometime soon because there was so much to see, but we couldn't experience it all because there were so many people! There are trucks and airplanes and helicopters...and the kids can climb in and on everything! It is amazing!


  1. Happy Anniversary. Your story of rice cakes reminds me of kidney bean paste that I had at a Japanese friends house. It was disgusting but I ate it to be polite. njm

  2. We have had red bean paste, as well. On one of our trips to Costco, Kennedy tried a sample, and the poor kid spit out red all over her plain white t-shirt! She was not polite enough to swallow it, I guess!! :)

  3. I tried Korean rice cakes last spring at work, but they were stuffed with some sort of filling. The texture was "unique" as was the flavor, but I thought they were good!


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