13 November 2005

Reporting from Jamsil

I have decided that the pictures of my past will be hosted here at my main blog, instead of my other blog, which will concentrate on my novel and not my memoir.

Moments ago, I have just taken some pictures of my former hangouts in the Jamsil district of Seoul.

Jamsil was a very important part of Seoul in the 1980s, developed virtually overnight from silkworm farms to the host of the 1988 Summer Olympic Games. (Don't ask me how South Korea's fascist dictatorship got it right after a Tian An Men-style massacre.) There are many Olympic facilities scattered throughout the district. And this is where, in the early 1980s, I grew up and started schooling.

The green sign to the right reads "Seoul Shincheon Elementary School." This is where I went to kindergarten and the first few years of elementary school. The kindergarten bungalow is no more though...

Nearby is this apartment building, where I lived. Part of Jamsil Apartment Complex 5th Phase, it may be torn down and rebuilt like the first four phases (which, unlike the 5th phase, were coal-heated 5-story ancient buildings with no elevators). Speaking of the five phases of the complex, I also lived in the now-demolished 2nd and 3rd phases, but was too young to remember anything.

Not too far away is the Jamsil Olympic Stadium, which hosted the 24th Summer Olympic Games in 1988. I was off to Los Angeles already by then.

Earlier today, I was in downtown Seoul, in the Myongdong shopping district, where I took many trips as a child, while living in Jamsil.

This is the main drag in Myongdong.

This Baskin-Robbins store used to be a bakery called Cake Parlor, and that's how I will always remember it. My mother was a regular there.

And a bonus picture...

An Asiana 747 sits in Los Angeles on Saturday the 12th, preparing to bring me to Seoul.