Seoul South Korea

Gyeongbokgung, Main Royal Palace.

Spent a couple of hours here then relaxed drinking coffee in the gardens. This palace was established back in 1395 that had been levelled to the ground twice my the Japanese army. With a turbulent history with Japan, I now understand why there is so much resentment.

Received an email message from Citibank saying they had a suspicious transaction and the stopped my card, obviously it was the cash transaction yesterday at their ATM.
Been using the card all over America for 5 months but this is my very first cash transaction I have done since having the card for now 4-5 years. Hopfully it will be sorted out quickly.

Lunch in Seoul

Getting married in S Korea

I emailed my application for the “Certificate of No Impediment” at a cost of 185 dollars to the New Zealand Embussy in Seoul, easy process with the only hard part was having to visit the NZ embassy in Seoul to sign documentation in front of an official lawyer which cost an additional 74,000 won.
Marriage process in South Korea seems so far to be relatively painless and easy on the new Zealand embassy side anyway.

Register of marriage:

Couple of days latter we decided to head down to the Gu office. Even though our wedding date isn’t for another 4 weeks, we decided to start the process early with the main reason that I can then start applying for the national insurance.
Within an hour we were married in the eyes of the law, so easy and they even had a massage chair there for me to relax while waiting.
So with everything done with the legal side of the marriage, the next focus point is the wedding itself.

Wedding venue

Personally I’d prefer a very small wedding with only close family and friends attending, however, as my family are flying over from New Zealand, the Korean parent’s have other plans.
Much debate in Korean language over the next day happened that sounded more like arguments but Eunhwa assures me that this is normal. Eunhwa had difficulty in keeping the number at 100 where as the sisters wanted something like 300.
Next was a visit of three venues, first one was the best in my option while it was raining, but I’m thinking I’ll have very little input and its up-to the girls. But to be fair , we visited two others.
Next one was what looked like a town hall and was about the same price as the first but their standard seem to be lacking. No accommodation was being offered and the dinning hall looked more like a school lunch hall with a buffet on offer.

buffet style catering

european wedding style

Next was nearby and offered a traditional setting, initially it was promising but on closer inspection, the grounds were poorly maintained and the owner that we had the appointment with was terribley dressed, dirty cloths, unshaven and the smell of alcohol.
It had potential with views overlooking rice fields and offering accommodation, but closer inspection the rooms on offer was sure enough Korean tradition with sleeping on the floor in really smell rooms with sheared bathrooms with three other rooms.

Enterance to the triditional wedding venue

Rice field view from the wedding venue

Triditional Korean rooms, No thanks for wedding night