I am spending the day off for our university's anniversary with colleagues. I joined the profs' hiking club for their first hike of the year climbing the mountain of our home base Geumjeongsan. It means golden dragon, and is called so both for its historic significance and its long shape with rolling humps.
We tackled it south of here at the entrance to the park climbing the arduous path underneath the cable car. I was in better shape than most of my companions because I have been hiking all winter.
After resting and enjoying the fabulous view at the top of that section, we headed for East Gate where we had reserved a banquet at a unique mountaintop restaurant. We got separated, though, when Prof. A thought he had dropped his hat and went back to look for it. Three of the group stayed behind with him, but the rest of us charged on and we didn't all meet up again until we met at the restaurant. I suspect they took the easier middle path and that's how they arrived to that destination sooner, sitting their nibbling on the first course with smug looks as we sat down at the table.
It was very peaceful up there and we took a lesser traveled path following the original fortress wall. The wall guarded the Silla state from encroaching armies of competing kingdoms, including the Japanese empires. Only a few elders and some business people entertaining clients were up there today, a Wednesday.
The meal was an unsual feast of goat meat. All the usual side dishes with beans, kimchi and various vegetables were present, plus leaves to wrap up the meat and sauce with. The mature goat meat was served as marinated and fried morsels. Next, plates of boiled kid meat were presented. It was very tender and tasty.
The plan was to walk for an hour more down to our campus, but a heavy rain was falling as we were leaving the restaurant so we opted for a mini bus transporter. Someone called a friend to fetch some of us.
We only hiked for about two-and-a-half hours after getting a late start at around 9:20 a.m. It was a fun and enchanting outing.
Since I got home, I started tidying the room and putting aside some of the party things for tonight's little meet-and-greet. It's been a quiet and slow afternoon. I' set up the stereo, finally, and I've been reviewing and uploading photos.
I tell you how the little fete went tomorrow.