Monday, August 14, 2006

Greetings from Seoul

I've arrived!
I had hoped to post "Airside at Heathow" once I'd finally got checked in and through the departure control, but the Net Nanny software they use on the internet kiosks classify and all blogs on it as "unsuitable due to likelihood of porn" I also can't remember the email addres I can use to mail posts to.

Needless to say Heathrow on Friday was "organised chaos". The time taken between arriving at Heathrow tube station and getting airside was over two hours, not too bad considering the thousands of people in random queues in the check in zone. The atmosphere was good natured and the information assistants did their best, but I was very lucky to somehow arrive at the head of the Korean air check in time to be able to request and recieve a seat by the emergency exit. The queue upstairs to get airside took 45 minutes alone to traverse.

The flight was late departing due to having to offload two peoples luggage who failed to make it to the gate, (probably still in the queue to get airside!) and delays on the airport taxiways. We took off an hour late. I felt sorry for anyone on the Continental airlines flight to Chicago which was scheduled for 16:00 but delayed till 22:00, several other US flights were reporting long delays too.

It was an uneventful flight. My tactic of staying awake the previous night paid off and I managed to sleep for four or five hours. We arrived at Incheon Seoul at around 5pm local time and I met The Bat in the arrivals hall at around 6pm. A very joyful reunion. After a bus ride and short taxi journey we arrived at our new apartment. The Bat had only just picked up the "keys" ( it's an electronic button key) that morning and had been busy cleaning it and moving out of the original unsuitable accomodation.

The apartment is in the Youido area of Seoul. Out of the window we can see the National Assembly building. It is also the financial and media district of the city. It's full of modern skyscrapers: imagine Canary wharf, but covering an area six or severn times larger. Our building is beside the Ben Hur hotel!

Sunday we visited the almost brand new National Museum of Korea. A huge place teeming with Koreans. I also had my first trip on the metro. More, many more details to follow.

This morning we followed what will be our normal routine. The Bat needs to be in the office for 6am to prepare for her first class at 6:30. So a 5am start leaves enough time for the 20 minute walk to the language school.

I'm posting this from a post office opposite the school. It's amazing: blogger somehow knows I'm in Korea, and all the menu options are in Korean. Luckily I can remember to relative locations of the important links.

The county is so full of surprises and interesting things. I've already got a couple of months worth of ideas to blog about and I haven't even started taking photos yet.
Better post and let someone else use the terminal.

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