By , June 14, 2012 12:39 pm

This past Sunday MyeongHee and I went out for a little picnic in the mountains.  I’d been scouting for places for the Inferno Ride coming up this Saturday and I’d found a nice little stream nestled in the mountains that was cute.  Of course, I did my scouting on a Saturday and the crowds were low. We went on the picnic on a Sunday and the places was crawling with people. One of the things about this place that is sometimes frustrating is the population density. With 66% of the land too steep to build on there’s just a glut of people, especially to nice, interesting places on the weekends.  We had trouble getting in and out and parking but otherwise it was fun.

The typical Korean picnic is to bring the entire kitchen along and cook lunch or dinner there. So, we brought strips of pork and grilled them followed by a bowl of noodles. Then we decided we’d better walk off all that fat. So we hiked up the mountain. Away from the stream, the crowds thinned out immediately and we were left with the sounds of nature. I’ve said it a million times, but this is really beautiful country once you’re out of the city.

MyeongHee poses with the dogs along the road up

I the dogs were more interested in all the bird noises up the road than posing for the camera. There was a pheasant making clucking noises off in the woods and they had a good time running around chasing after the noise.

Still late spring here, the flowers are still out in many places. This bush on the side of the road just begged to be sniffed.

MyeongHee looks way more natural sniffing than I do

Up at the top of the trail is a slightly famous temple. This is NaeWonAm, a temple for nuns. Nicely situated in the saddle of a couple of mountain peaks, it was extrordinarily beautiful.  MyeongHee took advantage and went in and prayed for a couple of minutes while I snapped a few more pictures.

MyeongHee bows in prayer. Each bow is a stand, knee and then nose to the floor gesture that is good exercise, too

Outside the temple is a tree that is 450-500 years old.  The trunk is really gnarly and rough and it the size of a small car at the base.

The big tree

difficult to see the girth of this tree from just a picture. It's huge.


After the hike we came back down the mountain – and eat some more pork and noodles. By then it was nearly 6pm and we decided to head for home. Not a terribly exciting weekend as weekends go, but it’s good to get out of the city and away from the crowds.

Also this week I decided to get my cracked tooth taken care of it. With the gum infection over, they were free to do some work. SO they put in a temporary porcelain crown and then wrapped a metal band around the tooth to hold the bond. I go back in next week for round two. A total of 4, maybe 5 visits and my cracked tooth will be properly repaired and covered and look natural.  Again, no insurance.   This week’s bill:  a whopping $53.  That’s it.  They said the whole thing will be perhaps $350 and that’s with no insurance company taking their piece of the pie.  Suck it, American medical and dental thieves.  That’s another thing I will surely miss about Korea when I leave: cheap but effective medical care.



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