Last night, around sunset, I ventured out of my house expecting to find the usual clouds and imminent rain. I was shocked to discover…that it was kind of a nice night out there. Well, I thought to myself, this brief glimpse of the sun will be nothing but a memory tomorrow. I woke up and it was still there. So I did what every non-mudfester on Jeju would logically do and headed for the beach. I had almost forgotten how nice it is (and so had my skin, apparently. I got a pretty good sunburn). I met a few friends there and went for a lovely swim in the turquoise-green water that makes Hamdeok worth trekking to. Last night, I skipped a beach dance party to stay home, read Lonely Planet Beijing, and plan my trip to China in 3 weeks. I’ve been slightly frustrated that I only have 4 days of vacation plus the weekend, but I have to remind myself that I should be happy that I get to go to China at all, and really, trying to see the whole country is impossible. I really want to go to Guilin (considered one of the most beautiful places on earth, it has been used as the setting for many movies) but it is too far away and too expensive to get there. I will save it for "someday." Instead, I’m going to spend all 5 days in Beijing (no X’ian, either…not enough time) and see the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, etc. There are a few side trips I can take from there, also. Flights were kind of difficult, so I’m also spending a day in Seoul. I found a cool place to stay that is in a traditional courtyard house built in the 1700’s, located in one of Beijing best-preserved hutongs (old neighborhoods made up of small alleys- many of them have been razed to make way for modern buildings).
As Koreans say, Assah!