This morning we were given a Chinese breakfast spread of plain porridge, vegetable & meat dishes, warm soy bean milk & dough sticks ( 油条 )!!!! Yeah!!!! I miss Chinese food! What a great meal!
Although I still have a bad cough, I just stuffed myself silly with the fat crispy dough sticks. mmmm..... eat first, I will see a doctor when I go back to Singapore!
After the hearty breakfast, I seemed invigorated, I was full of life & energy. Next come the exciting part, Xiao Lian will be bringing us shopping at specific tourist shops. It's time to 'milk the cows'!
In the itinerary, there was the shopping at night markets & wholesale centres which she didn't bring us. Also not much time was given for us to shop. Now all the money saved from not going on those shopping trips will be channelled here. Clever! 聪明！Now, this morning we have half a day of shopping & 3 shops to visit.
This shopping trip was meant for tomorrow morning. But Xiao Lian made it today because she wanted to hire out the bus for tomorrow - to us - for more shopping. She told us the bus would send us to the airport only. There is a whole morning of free at leisure, so if we want the bus to bring us for shopping, we have to pay 10,000 won per person. We rejected the offer. The shopping malls opened at 11 am. Some places opened at 10 am. The bus is going to send us for lunch near the airport at 10.30 am, so what shopping can we get from 7.30 am to 10.30 am?
Ginseng Monopoly Show Room (人参公卖局 ). This is a specially designed showroom for tourists, located in a building, not opened to their locals. Busloads of tourists were brought to individual showrooms where sales girls give sales talk in English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Japanese, Bahasa Indonesia.....etc to extol the goodness of their products. Some of their salesgirls are recruited from Malaysia, Hong Kong, China....etc.
Everybody bought something. I bought a box of Ginseng tablets for Chris, 1440 tablets - a year's supply for US$761 (S$1172).
I believe in the medicinal efficacy of Ginseng. I don't think they are selling fakes but I know I'm paying a higher price for it. This is what happens when you join a tour group. The tour guides earn extra income through commission given by these companies. Anyway, I have no time to look elsewhere for Korean Ginseng, so I might as well buy here.
Also Chris told me the night before that my gamble on Genting International has paid me handsomely, so I'm going to spend a bit of that money for the ginseng tablets.
I was thinking of getting a box of Honeyed Ginseng too, they claimed it used the best quality (& most expensive!) 6-year-old Korean Ginseng, which are immersed in top-grade Honey. You have to slice the whole Honeyed Ginseng & eat 2-3 slices a day. It's really very tasty. I'm afraid I would not stop eating it. At US$761 a box, it is pure luxury!
I would rather save the money towards the trip to Liverpool, UK. Chris' favourite soccer team's hometown. It is his dream to sit in their stadium & watch them play. That's my gift for him. A trip for two, he can bring Jaymes, I don't care for football.
Next we went to a Amethyst (紫水晶工厂 ) Factory & a Cordyceps ( 冬虫草 ) showroom. I didn't buy anything from these two.
It was time for lunch after all the shopping.