This was my first year in Korea without a solid plan for the Lunar New Year holiday. For the first three years I lived here, I took these days off as an opportunity to travel outside the country. The first coinciding with my winter vacation to Malaysia, Singapore and Bali, while the second year I celebrated in Hong Kong. Two years ago I had a completely different experience, celebrating family style with my ex-boyfriend, his parents and even an afternoon visit Grandma's house - my first and only 세뱃돈 (New Years Money). A few students asked me if I would go home to see my family during the new year, a question I've gotten in previous years as well, but one that still surprises me. Not only do Americans not really celebrate the Lunar New Year, but there was no way I was about to do a 15+ hour round trip for a four day weekend. Funny that most Koreans consider a weekend trip to Seoul (roughly 3 hours) too long, but my 15+ commute home would be understandable. Not wanting to stay home alone for the weekend, I decided to take the opportunity and head down to Busan.
Last weekend I was lucky enough to get time to spend with some of my family. My aunt and uncle had planned a whirlwind tour of Korea and China to show their kids (my cousins) where they were from. I was able to meet them for the weekend in Busan, one of many stops on their jam packed vacation. They weren't scheduled to get into Busan until Saturday evening but I wanted to make the most of the weekend so I got up early and caught a train to Busan. I looked into a few different ideas for the day and since the weather was pretty nice when I got there I decided to start with Yongdusan park (Dragon's head mountain) and Busan tower. It seemed pretty close to the train station so I decided to walk.
Where to start. After living in this country for three years I have memories, experiences and stories galore. I'll now always be a bit partial to the Land of the Morning Calm. Filled with delicious foods, beautiful nature and friendly people, I'm always happy to return.