Korea, Streams, Creeks & Rivers, Urban Walking
Comments 18

A Journey into the Cosmos

Hey, all. Hope you had a good TTHOD-25 (Thing-That-Happens-on-December-25). Mine was abysmal, even worse than last year’s; the highlight was going back to bed in the early afternoon. But I was too caffeinated to sleep soundly, so even that pleasure was short-lived. There was no option but to drink (German) beer, but I did manage to pack a few boxes while the euphoria lasted — why wait till Boxing Day?

Let’s move on to happier things. Christmas just brings everybody down.

*          *           *          *          *

Here’s my return visit to Daejeo Ecological Park, on the banks of the Nakdong, on September 1st. This walk had quite a different flavour — and a lot more colour. Not much use for words, really, but I’ll throw a few at ya, since I need to practise my English for next week.

I survived the writhing tendrils of the rampant pumpkins as I left the station…

mmm

The Gimhae-Busan/Busan-Gimhae (I forget which) Light Rail — & a Pumpkin. Oh, & an ant.

..and booked it straight to that excellent bamboo grove you’ll remember from last time, which was extra spidery on this sunny late-Summer afternoon:

mmm

mmm

Almost immediately I was diving into the bamboo, narrowly escaping certain decapitation from a couple of passing sunshades:

mmm

Varying the route a bit this time, I was soon passing a huge thicket of cosmos that I decided to revisit later when the light was less harsh:

mmm

Chances are you’ve never seen a sign like this on a stroll through your local park:

mmm

And by the way, please clean up after your dog

Yeah, the English is crap, but I’m guessing the objectionable behaviour might include lighting bonfires, dancing rowdily, leaving candles and piles of fruit everywhere — oh, and maybe flying without a permit.

I strolled on into a wider, wetter area, gradually approaching a bunch of radio-controlled helicopter enthusiasts who really added to the natural ambiance — said ambiance building to ear-splitting levels with every step. Miniature aircraft freaks, water skiers, jet-ski jackasses — I suppose there’s a place for every hobby, just wish it wasn’t the places where other folks go for an encounter with “nature”.

Selfish me.

Crossed a canal…

mmm

..and decided to loop back, which meant passing the fly-boys — curiously, all men, with their kids and wives sitting nearby on picnic blankets.

Half an hour later I’d left the flying buzzsaws behind and the new-found silence coincided nicely with my return to the cosmos jungle:

mmm

I’ve always liked these American (North & South) natives — they’re really a failsafe annual and often save you the trouble of actually sowing by doing the job for you. They’re common in Korea and Japan (you’ll recall a bittersweet frolic among their gangly stems here) and probably just about anywhere. Wikipedia says they’re even naturalised in South Africa!

You might detect a hint of almost-path, a maybe-track through the head-high thickets of sprawling asters. What the hell, you only live once, hopefully. So I took a deep breath and dived in…

mmm

..and it was like wading through a trough of cooked spaghetti, but with pretty flowers.

If it had been Australia, I’d have expected death by snakebite at any moment.

But I lingered long enough…

mmm

..for sunset to kick off…

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..and that made it all worthwhile:

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A breeze shook the grass-heads. I lingered a few minutes, briefly enchanted or possibly entangled…

mmm

..and started for the station in the last technicolor breaths of daylight:

mmm

mmm

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That bamboo alley, though — kinda forgot about the resident arachnids, and the sensation of an unyielding strand of spider silk stretching across your face always gets the heart racing. I recoiled in horror — or was it disgust? — and had to limbo-dance under the web, which was really a nice piece of work considering it hadn’t even been there when I came through:

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mmm

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Clearly one man’s environmental park is another critter’s place of business.

I’d hoped I’d get a chance for a final visit but it wasn’t to be — unless I cram a quick trip in this weekend. Unlikely, though — the boxes — but it would be cool to check in again in a decade or so and see how that bamboo alley has progressed.

Then again, by then the whole place might have been absorbed into the Cosmos…

mmm

~ And that’s all the Goat wrote

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18 Comments

  1. That pumpkin tendril photo is great – reminds me of scifi novel illustrations. Something about the light. A great album cover for a band called P51, were there such a thing.

    You know how something you find on the internet can get you surfing around looking into things you never thought of looking into, and don’t need to – merely out of curiosity? From a Korean National Parks brouchure: “Shamanism is illegally practiced … which is causing litter problems (Candles, incense, and food waste) as well as exposure to the risk of forest fires. All visitors are urged to participate in the preservation efforts to keep our national parks beautiful.”

    • Dominic, that is a great idea, and if there isn’t a band called P51, there should be.

      I am grateful for that national parks info — backs me up, and I often feel like the only person in the country who gives a damn about preserving what nature is left here. I have photos I’ll share sometime of three creepy (but cute!) voodoo-style dolls used in some ritual by the creek, up in the hills — and just dumped there afterwards.

    • Thank you. Do you mean, did I teach myself photography? If so, yes, but I’ve read a LOT about it in books and online and still have a long, long way to go.

      • sorry for my poor english ._. yes, i meant it. so you’ve learn photograph from reading books, online, and travelling, right? next, just suggestion, try to visit Indonesia 😀

      • That’s right. I’ve been taking photos quite seriously since 2010 and obsessively for the last couple of years!

        Indonesia? One day, perhaps, but my long-distance travelling days are almost over for now, I’m afraid!

  2. You know what? I can’t say I’ve ever seen a woman flying a model plane or sailing a model boat? I guess they’ve got more interesting things to do?!

    Korea is done! Well done mate, you’ve served your sentence!

    • You’re right: boys’ toys, I suppose. Really don’t see how a family could enjoy it — the wives, anyway. But Stand by Your Man (but keep your head covered) and all that!

  3. The only part of Christmas that brings me down is the total lack of spirituality, avoidance of religion (on what is a religious holiday), and crass commercialism.

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