After lectures on food language in film and branding and design in food packaging, we headed out to Fasika Ethiopian restaurant in Lenexa. Many were tasting the Ethiopian bread, injera (made from fermented teff flour), for the first time. We had a sampler platter of various vegetables - collards, green beans, lentils, cabbage, split peas - and meats - chicken, beef tibs and ground beef.
On a beautiful Monday evening the Advantage Food and Culture students met for our first class, learning a little about food as a social and cultural marker. We experienced some Korean food while we learned about Korean social practices around eating. What a great group - people tried a wide sample of Korean items:
Bibimbop, Korean veggie pancake, a spicy chicken dish, bulgogi, tteokboki, kimchi, and various other side dishes.
One interesting aspect of Korean culture are the animal cafes. Because of the population density, Koreans are often living in apartments and have not typically been pet owners. Although that is changing somewhat - you see a few dog walkers here and there, some Koreans like to be around animals, so there are cat and dog cafes where you can interact with the pets while having a cup of coffee or tea. This one was really strange - a cafe which had raccoons living there. We checked it out after the fortress wall hike and lunch.
Well...unfortunately our time in Seoul is over. Reflecting back on the past week of food, tours, and cultural experiences, your final assignment is to post two to three paragraphs sharing your thoughts on the trip: What did you learn about Korean culture? What surprised you? What did you learn about yourself? What had the most impact? etc.
Thanks for being such a great group! It was a pleasure sharing this experience with you all.
For our final morning in Seoul, we decided to have an outdoor adventure and hike a portion of the fortress wall. At one time the wall enclosed the entire city. Due to the various wars and occupations, much if it no longer exists or has been rebuilt. The section we hiked runs behind the palace and Blue House (home of the president, similar to White House). During the two hours of up and down terrain, we learned the tales of wars, battles, and even North Korean invasion attempts.
Here we're standing under the "water gate," one of the few gates still connected to the wall.
We made it to the top! Pretty exhausted, but still smiling!
I (Dotty) look much better here than I felt! Although it was great to know that it was all downhill from here.