Monday, November 26, 2012

Seoraksan Hike Weekend: Day Two


[The day before we had hiked up Seoraksan, the third tallest mountain in Korea, to watch the sunset. We froze almost completely, but were able to make it through the warmer valley and see the autumn leaves.]

That night we stayed at our hotel in a town near Sokcho on the Naksan beach. We had eaten the night before with the leader of the tour group When in Korea, William. He took anyone who wanted to go to a local Korean restaurant. Nothing was in English, so he translated for us. That made it a lot easier.

The next morning, William made breakfast for everyone in the group in the hotel kitchen. We ate together a great meal of pancakes and sausages. There was hot chocolate and coffee to drink. While eating we met some cool people too. There were people from Austin and Colorado who had been to places I knew. Everyone was very cool, laid back and easy to get along with. I usually have a hard time getting to know people in those kinds of situations, but I had a good time.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Seoraksan Hike Weekend: Day One

A hiker taking a photo of the sunrise from atop Seoraksan.

I enjoy hiking. So, when Jackie said there was a long hike up the third-highest mountain in Korea, Seoraksan, I thought it would be a lot of fun. Then she said it would take twelve hours. Whoa. Intense. We chose to go with When in Korea (WinK), a group that specializes in taking expats around on different excursions, experiencing all the Korea has to offer.

After work on Friday, I met Jackie and went to the nearby subway station. We then rode over to the meet-up point. It was already a bit cold, but I had already changed into a couple layers to keep warm. The bus took a few hours to get all the way to the starting point. Seoraksan is located near the northeast coast of South Korea. Along the way it was difficult to sleep because they kept the lights on in the bus for some inexplicable reason. We tried to sleep as much as possible.

When we got to the start point we sleepily stumbled out of the car an into the fresh night air. Immediately multiple people began exclaiming, "You can see the stars!" The ability to see the stars, which I once took for granted, was striking. I had not even realized I could not see them in Seoul. But now that I was away from the city, there they were again. It was nice.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Busan International Film Festival 2012: Day Two


[The day before we traveled down to Busan to attend the Busan International Film Festival. The Saturday shows were all sold out, so we went to the Busan Museum of Art. Then we spent the evening at Haeundae Beach. All in all it was a great day.]

Our second day began extremely early. Jackie was sick and woke up with a, what we now have decided, was a terrible sinus infection. That whole time was a blur, but we were close to going to the hospital.


The funny thing is I was exhausted so I did not want to get up later when we were supposed to go buy tickets for the day's movies. She went instead early. Luckily, she was able to get there in time to snag a couple of showings to some cool movies.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Busan International Film Festival 2012: Day One

The Busan International Film Festival village sign
A couple weeks ago, Jackie and I had the pleasure of heading down to Busan in order to attend the Busan International Film Festival. Neither of had been to Busan yet and did not know what to expect of the city or the festival. We would be pleasantly surprised by both.