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Stuff I forgot: Apgujeong Jazz and Namdaemun Deals

April 22, 2010

Last Friday, Matt and I went up to Orange line to Apgujeong Station to have dinner at a swanky live jazz club. Matt is usually in the area for rugby practice but I had never been…and now I hope to go back. There are tons of nice restaurants within a few minutes walk and wide sidewalks lined with high end shopping stores and boutiques. In particular, I saw a Brazilian BBQ place that I’d like ot go back to at some point when I have some money to spend.

The jazz club, Once in a Blue Moon, is about a ten minute walk from the station but well worth the mini trek. Having already seen the menu online, we expected to pay a lot for the night out but the dinner set turned out to be 30,000 won a plate that included one of the best nicoise salads I’ve ever had, the best steak and mashed potatoes I’ve had since I’ve been in Korea, and a lovely cup of coffee. Of course we got drinks – I got wine and Matt ordered some drink that turned out to be too girly for him. After our meal, we went upstairs to the smoking area that served as a loft just above the bands playing downstairs and Matt got a cigar…I got some pecan pie. The dinner itself wasn’t so bad cost-wise but the Cuban, pie, and drinks made for an expensive night out.

Tuesday, I went to Namdaemun in search of a camera. Apgujeong actually has a Canon store but I couldn’t find what I was looking for or anything else that wasn’t more than I was willing to spend. Normally I wouldn’t go all over Seoul on a weekday to buy something, but I have a trip coming up this weekend that needs for me to have a camera that works.

Like most places in Seoul it seems, Namdaemun Market is crowded both with people shopping frantically for things and people frantically selling their wares. The area spands more than a few blocks and sells everything from produce to toys to home goods to clothing to cameras. I’d say maybe 15 camera stores lined the outside of the market near an area designated as ” Gate 2″  I had a camera in mind, but was unable to find it anywhere…at all.  Matt helped me settle on the Canon EOS 400D which, from what I can tell, is a good camera for a budding photography hobbist such as myself. Something that resembled haggling was involved – we had intended to haggle more for the camera but it turns out just saying that the place next door charged the same amount as another place was enough to get a better deal.

For about $375 I got the camera second hand (everything seems good for now, we’ll see how that holds up), a standard lens, software, 4GB memory and some other doodads in the box. I’m hesitant to say it’s a good deal but right now, I’m more than satisfied with what I got AND the night ended with fantastic garlic fried chicken from a place nearby called Bbo Bbo Chicken.

Good times.

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