Today was my first Saturday in Daejeon in a few weeks, I’ve traveled to Busan and biked through Gyeongju and next weekend I will head back to Seoul. I decided since I was going to be in Daejeon, I would take in some of the views the city has to offer.
Daejeon is home to Daejeon National Cemetery, built in 1979 to be a sacred place for Veterans of the military to be buried. The National cemetery in Seoul reached capacity in in 1976 after soldiers from the Japanese invasion, Korean War and Vietnam War were buried so they built the one in Daejeon. I can’t describe the beauty of the cemetery and the photo’s I took definitely don’t do it justice. It’s definitely worth seeing if you ever find yourself in Korea.
After we finished walking through the cemetery,
we hopped on the Subway, umbrella’s in hand to go to
the entrance of Gyeryong Mountain. I have already
attempted to brave hiking this mountain once and I definitely wasn’t in the mood to do it again. Especially not in the rain, but I was hopeful I would get a glimpse of the beautiful cherry blossoms before they disappeared. I wasn’t so lucky. Most of the blossoms had already fallen and I found only 1 tree in full white bloom.
Shortly after entering the mountain, Leslie and I were greeted by a man singing who shouted out to us “Hello, nice to meet you.”
He motioned for us to sit and listen to him sing. We saw two Ahjussi’s gladly clearing the rain off the seat and motioning for us to sit next to them so we did just that. We sat and we listened. We hadn’t even been sitting for 1 minute when the man next to us put his arm around Leslie and pulled out his camera to take a close up of her face. We sat and listened to two songs but the discomfort mounted as the men next to us continued to cross personal and social boundaries. Just as we were ready to leave, we were thanked for watching the show and given a “present” by the singer. He told us it was Korean “chocolate” which I’m pretty sure was some kind of tofu candy. We thanked him only to see him point to the Ahjussi and tell him to pay for the candy. We couldn’t help but laugh.
After walking through the mountain we made our way to the bus stop where we were approached by another group of men and this time it was my turn to be harassed. This poor man pulled every trick he had out of his bag in an attempt to get me to go have drinks with him. He repeated over and over again “I good man, I English teacher, good man, good man.” Quite entertaining to say the least. He finally got the hint (after many “no’s” “ani’s” and “goodbye’s”).
We left the bus and made our way back into the city. Leslie and I ended our night in “Texas.” I’ve been dying to go ever since I saw the sign but it was such a treat to go with a fellow Texan. Being in “Texas”, made me feel a little closer to home. We ate “Pure meat chicken,” exchanged laughter and stories, y’all’s, ain’t’s and fixin to’s and had a wonderful time.
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