Archangel's blog A pointless waste of time

16Aug/141

Day 8

Today it was back to walking a fair amount but also a lot of bus travel.

We got up at 7 and got ready the left for the bus station. We made it to the bus with only one minute to spare! Luckily we had reserved seats, it was completely sold out. Then, traffic!

As I have previously stated today is Korean freedom day, so it's the start of a three day weekend and the pope is in town. So seemed like all the people that aren't catholic decided to get out of Dodge. It was bumper to bumper for a long while. What shocked me was the even when we got out on the highways and country roads it was more often that not queues. This traffic jam extended for miles and miles! In the end a buss ride that was supposed to take a little over two hours took about four. So we had less time than expected on the trek.

The place we went was an old merchant road used long ago to get things through the mountains from the south up to the capital. So it meandered up the hill a bit and had three big gates along the way as protection from bandits and invaders. The hike we took lead us up the hill for 6.5 km to the last hate and then back down again. Had we had more time we could have either continued and gotten a buss farther on the other side, climbed a peak nearby or taken a stroll through the old town that was built at the beginning of the trail. This town has been used for filming in several period dramas. But we just had time for the walk up and down. Jinu also had time for a quick dip in the river which was very cold.

The scenery was beautiful along the way. The road followed a small river (or was it a brook?) and along the way there were several natural and artificial pools and channels going back and forth on both sides of the road. There were sharp cliffs hemming the road in and thick lush forest all around. So as I said, the scenery was really beautiful.

For the first few kilometers it was way to many people for my taste. Luckily most people were to lazy to go all the way up to the third gate, so the further up we got the more space we got to ourselves. So it eventually became calm and serene for a while. Really nice.

At the top I realized I hadn't ate anything since breakfast and we were going to have vey little time to catch the buss. We decided to get some take out at the bottom and eat it at the buss station. We got burgers from Korea's answer to McDonalds: Lotteria. Same, same but different. But felt pretty good then since my stomach was really growling.

On the way home the buss wasn't more than half full so there was plenty of space to rest. Could even fall asleep a little while. And this time the buss actually took only the advertised 2 hours and 10 minutes. So we were back in town a little after 8pm and took the train to a good barbecue place Jinu knew about.

So I finally got to have Korean barbecue. Yay! It was an all you can eat style so as soon as we were running out of meat Jinu just asked for more. And the quality was really good, the taste was great and it was very tender. I even got to taste cow tongue. It was ok, a bit chewy though. All in all a great dinner. And unlike at home where they use gas burners they here had actual coals in a sunken part of the table. The only downside here was that it was a hot meal in more ways than one. I tried som pickled chilies that were very spicy and the had a large garlic clove that I thought was pickled, turned out to be raw and very strong. A little while after those two my stomach was a bit upset with me. It soon settled back down content with grumbling a little.

We then headed down to the river where we met up with another of his friends (a college of the first friend). Even though it was late the river park was filled with people, it was a really laid back atmosphere. We bought some strange juice (mine was more like lemonade) and had some snacks. The temperature was cool but not at all cold, so we just sat and talked for a few hours. Then we realized it was late and our original plan was to get up at 5 to catch a buss and go hiking again so if we left now we might get 4 hours of sleep...

Jinu thought we should walk the scenic route home, he said it was not longer than the other and would take a maximum of 30 minutes... It took 45! I almost fell asleep walking, I was so extremely tired and spent.

When we got back I just brushed my teeth and immediately fell asleep.

Today's gallery contains mostly food, haven't had time to upload for the big camera: a href="https://www.dropbox.com/sh/zv1y15uqbqwxhkt/AACEIcJxtiqHJPMN-DLnOBNba "target="_blank">Gallery link

Steps taken: 29 121 (23.05 km) actually it was a bit more since we walked back, but after midnight the counter resets. So day 9's count is going to include a midnight walk.

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