The motto for Myeong dong should be “Go Big or Go Home!” I had read that Myeong dong was a shopper’s paradise. Absolutely, one hundred percent correct. And for this rainy Sunday evening, it was on and poppin’ throughout the streets of Myeong dong!
I went to Myeong dong on a mission. Yes, that mission involved Rain. You’re probably thinking…..again??? Cut me some slack. The main purpose of my trip here was to attend his discharge. As much as I try to deny that it was THE MAIN reason, I have to concede it was. In my previous post, you will remember that I had already visited Myeong dong but I also said that I wanted to re visit it during the evening hours to catch a glimpse of the sights, the sounds, and the lights of the lively streets and in all honestly my previous trip to Myeong dong was just to a K-pop shop. Before I arrived into Seoul, I had a thought that I would be able to find everything Rain had pressed and published onto CD, DVD or otherwise. Wrong. Everywhere I went I heard the same thing: out of print. But I managed to find a few things that I did not already have and my collection is slowly growing. I went back to look around a little more and pick up some gifts.
The lights of Myeong dong sparkle. And I did not have my mighty Canon with me so these are less than perfect shots taken with my iPhone. Still, you get the idea. Every street seemed like Times Square and it is my conclusion that if I had to liken Seoul to an American city, it would indeed be New York.
Things were flashing and sparkling and store clerks were in the street yelling and coaxing people with free gifts if they just walked into the store (yes, I have a free face mask). This is a staple for the many beauty products stores that are prevalent throughout Seoul. They take their skin care seriously. And it is no wonder their complexions are exquisite. I still think that kimchi has a lot to with it!! There is always a pretty/handsome face to help lure you in. Even in a cut out cardboard version!!
There are even western stores along the streets of Myeong dong. I saw Adidas, Forever 21, The Body Shop, even a Payless. Was I momentarily time traveled back to the US??? There were street vendors selling knock off Coach, Tori Burch, and MCM bags and wallets; belts, cell phone covers, hats, jewelry and a myriad of other delectables that we some how cannot seem to live without!!
There were vendors selling Psy socks (true) and even a pop up K-pop shop where you can get your K-pop fix in the form of anything from a poster of your favorite member of Big Bang to a nail clipper featuring the face of Lee Seung Gi. Yeah, really!!
One stop K-pop shop!!
I think I may have mentioned this at one time, but I still believe that Seoul rivals Paris as a city of love. All around me from the Metro to the streets of Seoul, I see loving couples arm in arm, holding hands, sharing sweet tender smiles and the like. I can’t help feeling all swoony for them. I see them everywhere. It is truly delightful! Must be all the K-drama I watch!
Wait a minute…I did NOT see that man in black giving me the stare down when I took this picture!! Love the shot nevertheless because we have our lovely couple walking hand in hand backlit by the colorful lights of Myeong dong!
Finally, this was the icing on my K-cake! I happened upon a non-descript K-pop store which was housed on the second floor over a skin care shop. I thought…well, why not just give it a go as you never know if you gonna get lucky and find some Rain!! The clerk in this shop spoke English and was a Rain fan. Oh serendipity, you strike again!! We talked about how the only thing available in Rain’s collection is Back to Basic, which they had. I continued to look around while she took care of some other customers and when she was done I simply asked her, is there an OST for Full House? She looked at me and smiled and walked to the counter. On her way back she said those words I have heard over and over: it’s out of print. But then, she handed me a copy and said, “this is my last one.” Really?! Now, granted, Rain does not sing any songs on this OST but I finally g0t my hands on something that is ‘out of print’ – I felt a small victory because from a collectible standpoint, it’s still pretty cool! And just look at Rain, will ya?? ♥♥
Whenever you shop at a music store here in Seoul you leave with what you purchase but the clerks always give you a little something more, a poster, a picture, some small token. They will ask you…..’who is your favorite singer?’ always followed by ‘sorry, no Rain.’ I now own three pictures of MBLAQ and a photo collection of Big Bang which I will happily send to the first person who leaves a comment saying they would like them. But, you have to share with me who your fave member is of either or both! A contest has to have some rules, right?