Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Rural Isolation

After skiing, we checked into the Youth Hostel (a very nice hostel), and then enjoyed some billiards at the local rec room.

We had a leisurely morning on Saturday and then ventured out on the bus to our new destination. We set up camp in a remote part of Korea with beautiful mountains and scenery. The place we stayed at was kind of like the Korean version of condos with kitchenettes and private bathrooms. The exterior was a little weird though.

On Sunday night they had a barbecue for us. After dinner we played King's Cup and then learned some Korean counting games. On Monday morning, anybody who made it out of bed went hiking/ice walking.

The creek we followed was mostly frozen so we were able to walk up it for a couple of miles.

Despite the temperature and ice, there were clear signs that spring is on the way. The creek was lined with pussy willows.

Along the creek we also saw some traditional bee hives and honey pots. These were usually located under a cliff over hang. Once we knew what they were, we started noticing them in a lot of other places.

The trail head was marked by some traditional spirit posts called Jangseung. They are the guardians of the area. They protect from harm and ensure peace and prosperity.

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