July 22nd 2007 - Mystery tour

July 22nd 2007

Mystery tour with Val and Hannah...

Another cloudy week in Korea. The rainy season is turning out much like a Scandinavian summer, just drier ! At least it seams that we've had a lot less rain than back home this year. Here it's humid and warmish, but not really raining a lot. We should be getting to the end of the rainy season soon, which supposedly is when they will start the furnace .... Up to 40 degrees we are told. Good thing we are off on holiday soon.

Barely over the soreness of 2½ hours squash last Saturday, I went to play table tennis with our friend Peter. 1½ hours batting away had me soaked - it's so humid here that any exercise will make you break a sweat. We had some very good tight games, but I must say that compared to the Koreans, we are mere beginners. They probably have a good laugh at our behalf ! Tuesday I went to the driving range with Ray. I somehow managed to loose my head (!) - that is, the head came off one of my clubs. It was a sweet hit and both ball and head made it past the 50m mark ! Thursday was bowling night, so I guess I have had my exercise for the week (although it was all "old-men sports", I hear some of you say!). I enjoy being able to do so many different sports here. Back home you almost always have to be member of a club, which then means that you are expected to play once or twice a week. Here you can just turn up and have one game ... Mind you, the Koreans are fanatic about their hobbies. They define themselves by their hobby and will stick to this hobby till death (or so it seams to a foreigner). At the gym, we always see the same people playing squash, no matter what time we turn up. The same with table tennis. Fishing and trekking are both huge here with good reason - there is some very nice nature in Korea.

Today the boys went to play golf (me excluded - Sunday is reserved for Paula), so we took the girls for a mystery tour. We picked up Val and Hannah and headed out of town. The first stop on the mystery tour was a mystery town we stumbled across. A brand new suburb - loads of apartment blocks with nobody living in them and real estate agents camping out at every intersection. It was a little eerie. Then through the mountains to a place with dinosaur foot prints and petroglyphs (ancient rock carvings), a stranded ship and a Zen-buddhist meditation monastery. Another good day out !

Another bowling photo. From the left it's Lauritzen trainee Christian, Vanessa, Malcolm, Flemming and Marilyn

Otra semana con una tarde de bowling.

Starting the evening with a barbie and then ending up inside playing "Who wants to be a millionaire?" ..... Different country but still pretty much the same schedule !!! Ray, Ann Marie, Bill, Hannah, Chris, John and Val at John and Val's place.

Empezamos la tarde con un asado y luego en casa de Val para jugar "Quien quiere ser millonario" Ray, Ann Marie, Bill, Hannah , Chris , John and Val en su casa.

Fishing for barnacles ... I didn't know anybody ate barnacles (well, it's not actually barnacles, but must be their fresh water cousins). Notice the towel over the head - an efficient sun block.

On our way to the petroglyphs, we hooked up with a volunteer guide. It's not common to find good information in english, so we enjoyed a bit of education for once.

Aqui en camino a ver las huellas de dinosaurio. Tubimos la suerte de que habia una guia que nos explico todo en Ingles ! lo que es un privilegio aqui .

The area was really pretty and seeing that this Sunday we had somebody to take our photo, we posed beside the river.

El Lugar es super lindo y lo mejor fue que teniamos a alguien que nos sacara una foto juntos .

And posed again ......

Aqui Peder, Val y Hanna.

There were stone age carvings as well as 1500 century Chinese writings from the Shilla kingdom.

Aqui las piedras con dibujos de 1500 y escritos del reino de Shilla.

And let's not forget the dino foot prints. Val saw them all over and told long stories about how they had been playing in the sand, jumping from one spot to the other - then again, her imagination is a few steps ahead of ours. The rest of us saw a few prints here and there!

Aqui una huella de dinosaurio y la mano de Peder .

The mystery tour took us to mysterious places like this one. We still don't know what we were doing there, but it was pretty!

El tour estubo buenisimo , no sabiamos a donde nos llevaba Peder pero el tour fue todo un exito.

This is the view to the other side.

Aqui una vista desde el otro lado del cerro .

Back down in the valley the flowers and the rice fields colored our day.

Muchas flores en el camino, se ve muy lindo con los campos de arroz atras.

While the locals picnicked (another favorite Korean pastime) ...

Aqui la gente hace picnic y se baña a la orila del rio....teniendo la playa a 20 minutos !

we took a cruise ...

Aqui comiendo en un restaurant en forma de Barco.

... on the love boat ! This must be one of the strangest restaurants I have been to. The food wasn't bad, though. Reminded me of "100 years of solitude", with the ship stuck in the middle of the hills!

Aqui se ve el restaurant, muy lindo el lugar donde esta .

Last stop was Seongnamsa monastery/temple - a zen-Buddhist meditation centre. Val was a temple-virgin until today, so we thought it our responsibility to widen her horizon after 1 year in Korea !! The entrance to the temple is across the bridge in the background.

Aqui un templo budista de meditacion.

The temple is quite different from the other temples we have seen so far. More down to earth, it felt like.

El templo es muy diferente a los que hemos visto antes.

The setting was fantastic and the buildings were clustered together in a small valley at the foot of the mountains.

El lugar donde esta el templo es espectacular , mucha vegetacion y cerros muy altos.

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