There’s a park behind my house and I don’t go there often enough.
The first time I sat there was with Andrea a few months ago when I got my ukulele and we played together. Since then I’ve only gone a handful more times – which is absurd because it’s so beautiful and every time I go I think to myself that I should come more often.
So I know you’ve all been anxiously waiting on the cliffhanger of Namhae Chapter 2, but since I have to write it on my work computer on Monday anyway (too long to tap out using only my thumbs and a very temperamental touch keypad), I figured I’d post some pleasing pictures of this lovely park instead.
I went in the afternoon today with hot brewed Earl Gray tea and fresh cold melon cubes to snack on. The sun was surprisingly hot, so the latter was particularly refreshing. A warm breeze played through the trees which are finally growing lush from the recent rains – nearly looking like summer and it’s only mid May!
After settling on the low stone balcony, I sipped my tea and read more Dune. (More than halfway now!)
And here are some photos I took to remember the loveliness of this day.
You can kind of see my apartment building in this one – almost dead centre, it’s the tan building behind the white one.
When I needed to give my eyes a rest from reading, I watched the surroundings in the park. I haven’t much observed the goings-on of daily life in Korea, but ot was very peaceful. An ajumma or ajeossi would come to sit by themselves under a tree for a while, or a family would sit in the gazebo a little higher up, their young son or daughter racing around the tiny open space or hanging off the railings to do “chin-ups”.
A group of friends came by too, a boyfriend and girlfriend in matching striped shirts, and another guy and girl. The girlfriend smoked a cigarette while the other girl crouched, seemingly miserably, on the floor in front of them. Her pajama pants and thick gray sweatshirt with the hood up told me she was sick and only coming on this walk because her friends had convinced her. They all seemed to be offering her words of sympathy.
Apart from people-watching, I got to see (in the process of cringing away from and flicking with sticks) many different kinds of Korean insects. Some were black and white checkered beatles barely the size of a single segment of a blackberry, and others were black, long, and hairy with red, yellow, and white patterns.
I also almost put my finger into a funnel-web-type-spider’s home but luckily moved my hand away quick enough. Quite luckily indeed as I noticed the fat black spider was having an in-day, chilling menacingly in her web hole.
I think my favourite part though was listening to all the birds. Shrill territorial shrieks, the harmonic peeps of a nest of baby birds, and a baritone cooing coming from a tree just outside the perimeter of the park. Winter in Korean cities is devoid of any animal life, so this felt like a quick trip into sorely missed nature.
As I reluctantly headed back home, I passed by one of my favourite pieces of street art painted on the side of a house.
Here’s to the joy of Saturdays. I wish every day could be a Saturday.