Less than 48 hours before I leave Korea!
As I mentioned last week, I spent a couple of days in Busan. It’s a port city on the southeast tip of Korea. It was a nice change of pace to see the ocean, rather than more high rise buildings or rice paddies. Even more fascinating was the fact that there is a portion of the city, where my relatives live and subsequently where I stayed (with them), that is sleek and modern. It is reminiscent of Manhattan, with its steel and glass skyscrapers. (Here I have to go on the word of my mom and my relatives, who have a better memory of what it looks like. But from what I saw, I have to concur. Pictures to follow.)
Our relatives were gracious enough to take us to see much of the city, including the beach. As much as California might be defined as a beach culture, it may be possible than Korea might be more so! Along the beach there are stands offering tubes for rent, so people can float inside the ring and relax on the waves. The day we went there was a tornado warning in effect so the beach was sparsely populated, but I’ve seen news footage of hundreds of tubes crowding the water. The city has done an excellent job of capitalizing on its oceanfront location by building scenic walking routes and skyscrapers with terrific ocean and night views, among others.
Last weekend we went with some of our family friends to Seoraksan, a mountain a couple hours east of Seoul. We hiked up to one of the scenic spots, but our timing left something to be desired. The day we went was foggy and overcast, and most of our hike involved walking through said fog. It was, to say the least, an interesting and memorable experience. (Let me just say that it’s not that fun to walk inside a cloud.) Our hike also involved more than 800 stairs, many of which were narrow, steep, and not parallel to the ground. Despite those hardships, it was again a joy to see my brother have fun with his friends, and my mom have fun with hers. (Needless to say, we were very glad to reach our hotel room and we all slept very well that night.)
As our trip draws to a close, we have spent our time meeting with family members and doing some last minute shopping. And although I am grateful for the time I have spent here, I am quite ready to come home. I will try to post a few more pictures before I leave of the things I just discussed–I have a few hours ere yet!