Korean Folk Village

Monday was a holiday here as the states celebrated Columbus Day, so I seized the opportunity and tagged on our chapel outing to the Korean Folk village that is about an hour from here. This was a very interesting and refreshing day. We had a guide who shared with us about the village, who was much better at speaking English than understanding English.

Traditional Korean dancing has much percussion and a little tin horn that seems to play in counter cadence to everything that is going on. Partly a focus on rhythm and partly acrobatics, it is something to see.

Lunch was interesting. Tried some new food, and many of you who know me realize, there isn't much food I don't like. And this was good. I had a potato pancake like thing. I was saved by one of the little girls for just as I started to taste these little green vegetables she said, oooh -- little fishes. I looked closer, and.... SHE WAS RIGHT. Let's just say I didn't go the little fishes.

After lunch I wandered up to the temple and took in the sights on top of the hill and to my surprise didn't see anyone for about two hours. Very peaceful and relaxing. The villages were all authentic being composed of sites gathered from across Korea and brought here for preservation. I felt as those I was transported back in time and walking the streets and visiting the homes of folks from hundreds of years ago. I sat here on the edge of this pond for quiet awhile and enjoyed the birds singing, the warm autumn breeze and watch the fish frolic in the water. Was very eastern sort of moment.

This was a nice and needed break because from now on we are full up through the big exercise in November.

One thing I learned just from walking around is how important cultivation was (and remains) to the Korean culture. Everywhere there are indications of how they grew food just about any way they could. Red peppers were everywhere (a foreign plant introduced several hundred years ago from South America). Right outside fairly moderate homes would be found extensive gardens. Many home had plants growing on roofs, walls, in pots along side of the homes, and in small plots of ground just about anywhere. Not unlike when one drives through the cities here and observes gardens everywhere, including on rooftops - literally - dirt thrown on top of metal roofs with plants holding it in place.