When you are traveling, making plans is something that you do in order to act like you know what is going to happen. It never does. But this is often not a bad thing. Today I was going to go ride bikes with the Dutch girl, but she was to hungover, and she was going to switch hostels to one that was less run down. Same price, but nicer accommodations. This sounded like a good idea, but I didn? care to pack up my stuff and move it across town and decided to just stay where I was. This morning a British guy checked in who had just gotten off a ferry over from the holiday island, which is like our Hawaii. It is volcanic and all the Koreans go there. His ferry was an 11 hour overnight ride, so he was rested and he got on the bus with me to go see the temple and grotto. They were nice, but as I have said, the wonder of the large temples has left me to join someone else who is just getting here. There were signs everywhere saying”Taking Photo Prohibition.” Naturally I was unable to understand what this meant, and went ahead and took sneaky photos. Most of what I post was taken from waste level while looking like I was doing anything but taking pictures.
On this tour ,we saw several hundred school children (7th-8th grade) who all greeted us with the ?ello! Hello!?which is the standard greeting of a passing child. There were some occasional ?ice to meet you?and we heard ? love you, I love you!?once. It really is like being a celebrity. I could get used to this.
We were done by lunch time, and were starving because we hiked the 4 km uphill from the first temple to the grotto, so we went back into town and wandered around a covered market looking for something to eat. We found some tempora fried shrimp that looked really good, and bought a little bag of them. Note to self – never buy anything from an open air market that has been concealed by fried batter. When I bit into it, its eye exploded in my mouth while it simultaneously deposited at least 10 legs down my throat. It was actually a full shrimp. Head, legs, eyes, shell, everything. As I gagged, I heard the British guy gagging too, and saw that he had taken a bigger bite and had the whole head in his mouth. He was looking around for a place to spit it before he just shut his eyes, chewed and swallowed. Imagine leaving a dead fish in a bucket of saltwater for a few days, drying it out, then coating it in cold, half cooked plain oatmeal followed by a shot of brine water. Enjoy.
I was not planning on a large lunch, but I needed to taste something else, and fast. We found a really good Korean restaurant that served jiimjabop. A sort of chicken that is delicious. For w7000 each, we split a whole chicken that had been stir-fried with soy sauce and spices and was served in a giant bowl between us. It was amazing. He went off to check his email, and I went back to the hostel to nap for a while. I ended up reading my book on the roof as the sun went down, and then hanging out for a little while before showering, as we (me, the brit, and the dutch girl) all have plans to meet up for dinner around 7.
Chances are, I will not get around to posting anything else tonight, so the update will come tomorrow. Which I guess is actually this evening for those of you in the states.