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Published: August 29th 2007
Here we go
Baldie off in search of new land
So the monsoon season has finally come, bringing flooding in North Korea, and many days of Wellies and umbrellas here in Paju. Between the rain and the dentistry, it's been far too long since we had a proper weekend away, and time is starting to pass really slowly.
So, instead of being driven mad by another weekend of emails, pancakes and TV, we packed up the regular camping gear plus two small umbrellas and caught the bus to Incheon. From bus terminal we caught a subway out of incheon, and then another bus out to Jeongjongdo, the semi-artificial island that holds Korea's huge international airport. But due to a lack of funds, we were not heading to the airport, rather to a small pier, where we were just in time to catch the last ferry to Sin-do. But even the small island of Sin-do was not our final destination. We had found an a tiny patch of land, connected to Sin-do by bridge, named Si-do. After leapfrogging 2 other islands, Si-do should be out-of-the-way enough for us to recharge and flush out our souls.
And not only our souls, but it seemed that everything was going to be well-flushed!.
Landing on Si-do
In the evening rain
As we arrived on Sin-do jetty, the skies really opened up and it started to pour. We asked some of the locals about busses, even taxis, to Si-do, but there was nothing like that. They seemed really surprised when we told them we would walk anyway, and when we added that we intended to camp on the beach, they decided we must be out of our minds. We must be really leaving a great impressoin of what Westerners are like wherever we go! In their typically-concerned way, and after several offers of rooms-for-rent, they nominated someone to drive us to the beach.
As we arrived at Si-do's beach, the rain slowed to a light drizzle. The sun was just setting, and we strolled along to the far end of the beautiful beach, enjoying the soft sand and the salty air again. Wow, it's been far too long! We found a patch of soft sand up against the forest, at the far end of the beach, and quickly put up the tent during a break in the rain. Then we took our umbrella and went to go sit on the rocks at the end of the beach, and enjoy the
Looking for a campsite
It's all wet, but we have the place to ourselves
Sometimes it can take a whole day of travelling, crossing 3 islands, regardless of the time and weather. But when you finally find a place that is empty and quiet where you can sit down on the boundry of your known world and look out into the unknown, it is fantastically, immensely peaceful.
Well, it huffed and it puffed all last night but our little tent stayed standing. We were both actually really impressed. It was such an exciting night, the howling wind over the sea, the rain against our tent and the crashes of lightning sound so much closer when they are only on the other side of a thin layer of fabric. But we stayed dry and slept very well. I think it is because after almost a month of safe, home-living it is so refreshing to be living somewhere so wild
In the morning we packed our little tent, did our best to brush the sand off everything
and went in search of water to brush our teeth.
With the teeth polished we decided to head back on foot to the jetty the ferry dropped us at yesterday. Along the
Our spot on the sand
Up against the trees, but close enough to the water
way a friendly ajumma
tried to get us to stop walking and wait at the bus stop for the bus with her, and pasisng locals offered us lifts. They found it genuinely odd that we wanted to walk the whole way along the coast of Si-do, across the bridge and around Sin-do. But with the rice paddies, fishing docks and lazy streets, that walk was really the highlight of our trip.
After catching the ferry back to Jongjongdo, we decided to catch a bus into the airport, to watch planes, and then find out the best way to get back from the airport to English Village, so that we could let Susan (Cath's mom) know for when she comes to visit us on Saturday.
For about an hour we sat by a bus stop on the road, asking all the busses with "Airport" painted on them for a lift, but they all told us "wrong bus". Finally a kind mosquito scientist (!?) driving past pulled a U-turn to give us a ride to the airport where he had just come from - pretty typical Korean service.
At the massive Incheon International Airport we found that the only
Cooking in the tent. Yup, you guessed it - NOODLES!
places to see the planes were the resaurant lounges. But the cheapest thing on the menu was a $8 orange juice, so we gave it a skip. It was still good to be at the airport, with the air of excitement and people comming and going. It really got Cathy amped to see her mother, and got me all ichy-feet to travel to some other country again. After getting our buzz, we found the buss back home, bought a pair of tickets, and hopped on, stinky and sweaty, to squeeze in with all the smart buisiness men and jet-setters.
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