A Staycation in Chungers!


This weekend the weather forecast wasn’t inspiring and neither was the bank balance so a Staycation in Chungers was the most popular item on the menu.

On Saturday the rain was forecast to arrive at 10am so Blue Moon set out (in first gear) towards downtown at 7. The weather was overcast but rain did not appear to be impending, in fact in the back of my mind I suspected the forecast to be once again inaccurate.  That said it wasn’t cracking the flags as I passed Jazz & Sanjo and hugged the city stream towards Namsan.

It’s comforting to know that the uphill trek is followed by beautiful views from Seokjongsa Temple across the mountains and later by a virtual free wheel back home. It’s around 40 minutes to cycle up from Sang Ji City Ville, passing Yongsan-dong, Hoam.jik-dong, once you escape the city the surroundings are much more tranquil. I first came to Gwaneumsa, a small temple that is usually locked up, I passed through a small hamlet stopping to photograph some wild flowers. After here the road comes to an abrupt end dissolving into a walking trail up Namsan Mountain. I returned to the main road passing apple orchards and other cultivated crops which line the route; I stopped to photograph some vivid orange lilies in a front garden before taking the left fork towards Jik-dong and the temple. On the right they’ve constructed an eyesore, some monstrous apartments, which I must say will have fantastic views between the mountains  towards the city.

I climbed (on foot) the hill to the temple entrance stopping to imbibe some spring water before taking a moment to watch the monks scurrying about there business.  They had either just finished prayers or eating, many stopping to take some water from the spring in the central courtyard. I wandered up to the top tier and beyond discovering a newly made path to a “new” addition, a new stone Buddha.  Flanked by pink lanterns tagged by those folk who had donated towards his inception, the Buddha has the best views of the temple complex and its a great vantage point for photographs. I found a rock outcrop to settle on and gorged on the Premier League transfer rumours before strolling back down past the old storage jars and the Koy to continue my journey.

I free-wheeled the best part of the way home heading for provisons to create the evening dinner as Sean and Meghan were coming over. I picked up fresh tomatoes, mushrooms, peppers, egg plant herbs, Riggatoni and Mozzarella before heading home for a nap. Later I curated some snaps before catching up with Brazil and Co. in the Federations Cup. After a hearty meal and some Chilean Cabernet I slept soundly noting that the forecast rain had never materialised.

On Sunday I circumnavigated Chungers walking through the back streets of areas I’d simply passed by before, I met students buoyant after church, spent time at two temples, visited Gwana Park, Downtown and the market before heading home for leftover pasta and further photo editing. I listened to last weeks Guy Garvey on iPlayer falling asleep prior to a sumptuous roast dinner with Angel Disley washed down with a couple of Weiss Bier. Sleeping soundly I awoke to start this blog post and catch the 7:15 to my morning class in Eomjeong.

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