Even though I was only going to be at the festival for a day, I had with me all that I would need for a month of travel, since I was going to be (or am currently) living out of a suitcase until February. My trusty gadget-backpack and my little gray suitcase and I made the four-hour bus ride up to Seoul on the 9th, where I crashed for the night with a Swattie friend (more on that later). The next day, I met up with Tracey and Ammy, two Fulbrighters, as well as Tracey's mother, for lunch, and then accompanied Ammy to a dental clinic for a check-up. The dental clinic turned out to be also a plastic surgery clinic, and while I waited in the posh, five-star-hotel-esque lobby, I glanced through pamphlets and advertisements for the dozens of procedures offered. It was weird. Then, finally, Ammy and I got on the road.
|Ammy and the snow-covered train tracks. Both real trains and metro trains use these.|
Around 6:30pm, we arrived in Chucheon, the capital and largest city of Gangwon Province. I saw about five minutes' worth of the city before we had to hop on a bus headed even farther north (and that five minutes was spent running from the train station to the bus terminal). This bus made its way through windy, completely darkened roads. I dozed off for a bit, and an hour later, I had absolutely no idea where we were. I checked the GPS on my phone, and it showed that we were on a road with nothing but blank white space on either side. I looked outside and saw one building. Behind it, a field. There were no lights.
Sure enough, we were in Yuchon.
|A photo of Yuchon (유촌리) that I took on a different day. Let's see... 파로호느릅마을: Paroho (Lake) Elm Village. 농촌관광일번지: Rural Tourism #1 (?). And I can't figure out the right-hand post at all.|
When Ammy and I arrived at Yuchon's only bus stop, we got out and found Maggie, as well as our other Fulbright friends Adam and Katelyn, waiting for us. We had dinner and then spent the rest of the evening playing Contact, eating junk food, talking about movies, and getting psyched for all the fun we were going to have at the Ice Fishing festival the next day.
|Looks like college! Snacks, computers, lounging.|
|Katelyn, Ammy, and Adam with a fake tank. A fank.|