It’s been a slow week.

I haven’t been doing much here. I’ve been trying to save money. Mostly because I got the idea that I could go to India for a month after finishing my contract. On top of all my other plans. That means that I really need to start putting away money. But I think I can do it. I’m writing down all the money I spend, and I’m being more careful.

On Saturday I went to the Daejeon Art Museum again with some ladies that my recruiter introduced me to. It was good fun, and we saw some interesting stuff and some not so interesting stuff, and then had a good chat in a random Buy-the-Way with tables and pizza.

On Sunday I visited Suwon with Stephanie. It was a good time, except for the part where my CAMERA DIED because I’m not intelligent enough to charge it before a trip, haha. It was a low key trip. We met in Suwon and walked along the ancient fortress there.

Suwon is a really interesting place. It’s close to Seoul, and it is basically part of the sprawl that Seoul has become. There isn’t really a break in the “city”. You can take Seoul city buses in Suwon, and use your Seoul bus card. But there is something different about Suwon, and that’s the fortress. It surrounds the inner city–a cluster of small buildings and homes that are fully functional. Pavilions and an earth wall keep the inner city separate from the high rises and the development on the outside of the wall. It used to be a fortress against invaders, but now it seems like a fortress against modernity. From the top pavilions, you can see the inner city and the outer city–pillars of concrete perfectly placed, rising up from the ground.

Oddly, I was reminded of the Japanese gravesites that I saw when visiting in 2005. Japanese gravestones are stone pillars, and they are collected like little forests of perfect stone, since they are always attempting to save space. They are all the same shape and same color, but they are placed not exactly in rows–just in the place where they will conserve the most space. Looking out from the Suwon fortress, that was the only thing I could think of to compare all these buildings too. An endless sky of those little clusters of pillars.

The fortress had some good construction and a wonderful walk. It was good to visit Stephanie and see what there was to see. I really enjoyed Suwon because of it’s duality–the inside and the outside of the fortress–then again, I really like just about everywhere when the sun is out.

Tomorrow I’m planning a day trip to Jeonju, and today I’m staying in to write an article for the newsletter than my recruiter’s company is starting. I’m excited to be writing for it, and I’ll pass it all on to you once it’s published.

Oh, and one last note–on Tuesday I went to drop off my sad one-ear-only ipod at the repair person. He said he could fix it, if the sensor was still live, for free. When I went to get it on Friday, it was clean, wrapped in a little plastic protector, and it looked like a brand new ipod. In fact, he also reformatted it–so it could have been a new ipod and I would have no idea. And you know what? It was completely free. These are the things I LOVE about Korea.

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