Markus and I are very lucky to have a mountain in our backyard. We walk outside our front door and we can see Baekyang Mountain. Since I grew up in Florida, there has been a complete lack of hills and mountains in my life. The first time I ever hiked a mountain was in 2009. We hiked a small portion of the Appalachian Trail. We hiked for maybe three hours, but I thought I was dying. My body didn't understand what was happening.
Now that we live in Busan, we have heaps of mountains and trails waiting to be explored. We've been in Korea for over 13 months now and we've only gone a handful of times. We decided that this year, our final year in Korea, would be the year of mountain exploration. We even bought hiking shoes.
Korea is very much an outdoor city and the older generation and elderly love to hike. There are endless amounts of stores that cater to this specific need. I can't tell you how many people I see dressed in hiking clothes. Every time I've gone up a mountain in this country, there are heaps of older people passing me by. The energy that some of these elderly people have amazes me. It's probably why Asians look younger and live so long. Markus and I are striving for that kind of lifestyle, a healthier lifestyle. We decided that any chance we get, we're going to go hiking.
Recently the weather has gone from hot, humid and unbearable to cool, breezy and delightful. One Saturday afternoon, it was the perfect day for a hike and picnic. While we were going up the mountain, I started to think, why didn't we do this sooner? I realized that there was something that I had in my backyard, quite literally, and never thought to explore. I wondered how many other opportunities did I miss. It was then that I promised myself that I would take every opportunity to explore and not let things pass me by.
We knew that we would be out for a while, so we decided to pack a picnic. We brought a One Piece pizza (Markus is obsessed with these One Piece treats), almonds with little dried fish, triangle kimbaps, Korean Doritos and an apple.
On every mountain I've been on there's always a little station where you can stop and replenish with natural spring water. Korea is always thinking ahead.