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Yesterday it was finally time to cross “visit dog café” of my Seoul to do-list. My only problem now is that I might have to put it up on my weekly to do-list instead, because I can’t not visit these puppies ever again. Two hours of tea and dogs was enough to temporarily soothe my dog abstinence from Embla (the family dog who died last year), but now it’s back in full force, and all I want is to adopt one of them. Or all of them.

My BFF was a miniature poodle puppy who spent 30 minutes sitting next to me before she dared hop up on my lap. While most of the other dogs ran around and circulated among the guests at the café, she stayed by my side until I had to leave, leaving me heartbroken. I’ll be back for you, puppy who’s name I don’t know!

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In a city of 25 million people, a green oasis can somehow seem hard to locate. Seoul however has done an amazing job of creating parks, ponds and digging up rivers to create green lungs in the asphalt jungle. One result of the “think green”-mentality is the repurposing of the landfill by the World Cup Stadium, that was turned into a park a decade ago. Haneul Park to be specific. Sunday morning we headed over to take stroll among the tall eulalia grass that grow there in the fall. Taking a break from the noisy city life and breathing in fresh air was a perfect way of ending a busy week, and starting the next one.

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Interrupting my usual self-centered musings to share my 4 favorite instagrammers (as of right now). I am always looking for new people that can offer me some carefully designed and meticulously picked trinkets from their everyday lives, and these 4 certainly do.

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My inner alarm clock woke me 5:35 yesterday morning, which was a good thing seeing as my actual alarm clock had decided to stop working. Why was I waking up at 5:30 on a Saturday? Because this was the day I was going to get to see, step on and take pictures of the border between North and South Korea.

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Today marked my first exam in Korea, and also the beginning of a four-week vacation. I realized that I have made a lousy job of showing you details from my life in Seoul so far, with school and travels filling all of my time the last 2 months. That will change now that I have time to brush the dust of my camera and take it for a spin or two. This weekend we’re traveling up North to the DMZ (the Korean Demilitarized Zone), the border between North and South Korea, so stay tuned for photos and some words about the experience.

For now I wanted to show you some photos of my hotel room-sized studio in Sinchon. It’s not big, the bed is hard as stone, but it’s home.

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Last weekend I got to return to Europe for a couple of days for a meeting with ANSA in the Latvian capital of Riga. I’ve been lucky enough to have visited Eastern Europe on previous occasions, but Riga was a new place to check off the list (unless you count transits, and you never really do). We stayed in the Old Town, Vecrīga in Latvian, a part of Riga that has miraculously survived two world wars without enduring too much damage and is now on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. It’s also a patch-work of different architectural periods squeezed together in a very small space, the result being that you find yourself wanting to write fantasy novels about ghosts, ghouls and time-traveling.

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As for most Seoulites, my life in Korea involves at least 2*30 minutes spent on the subway every day. Seoul’s metro system has been voted the best in the world on several occasions and is believed to be the longest metro system in the world (measured in route length). It has also got free wifi.

Inspired by the extensive network, and sheer length of some of the routes on the subway map, I decided that while in Korea I am going to try and visit all of the end stations. Bring a book or a friend, sit on the subway until I reach the very end, go out and explore, then return to base. Repeat.

Today I got to check the first station of my list: Chuncheon Station. Chuncheon, incidentally, is the perfect example of how far the metro system reaches. It is a town about 2 hours north-east of Seoul, most famous for a battle that destroyed the city during the Korean War, and the K-drama Winter Sonata.

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Roller-coasters, cotton candy, carousels, haunted houses and weird hats all make up essential parts of one of my favorite attractions in the world: theme parks. This past Thursday I got to visit Everland, the largest theme park in Korea. Needless to say I was not disappointed, even though every fun ride was accompanied by a not-so-fun, 1-hour-long line. The line for my favorite attraction, the T-Express, was no less than 2-hours long. Worth every minute of that wait though (here’s a video of the ride).

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October 9th is celebrated as Hangul Day in Korea to commemorate King Sejong, the man who is credited with creating the written language that Koreans have used since 1443. Before this, Koreans used Chinese characters (called “Hanja” in Korea) as their written language, but the king decided that hanja was too difficult for the common folk to understand, and that Korea needed a written language that everyone could use.

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I was cleaning up my hard drive again (the burden of being an avid amateur photographer and videographer I guess), and found these photos from our day trip to Århus this summer. A spontaneous road trip from Kristiansand to Århus and back so that my friend could fill out some documents and check on her apartment. Large quantities of coffee, a couple of cold beers in the sun, strolling through town, visiting museums and people-watching were the essential ingredients involved in this trip.

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