Cycle 3 – Item 233
25 (Sat) August 2012
at Gyeongban Bungyo
-Gapyeong, Gyeonggi, Republic of Korea-
with DJ, MtG, MIT + AHY, LHS + YYH
Gyeongban Bungyo is a campsite. Way up in the mountains. It used to be a primary school, though I can’t imagine why kids would be living in the area or how they managed to get to the school and back again every day.
Amazingly, I didn’t go camping once all the summer. The most recent occasion was at MtG’s wedding reception over three months ago in mid-May (see 3.128 Grilled Pork Chops in Mario’s Kick-Ass Barbecue Sauce). Part of it had to do with the new cabin, which kept me busy most weekends. Part of it had to do with the season itself: heat, humidity, bugs. Part of it had to do with the ever-growing crowds of people, the mainstream popularity of camping having exploded during the past couple years, rendering most sites into refugee camps throughout the peak vacationing periods. Old-timers like us, we now prefer to wait until things cool off, literally and figuratively.
Though not quite entirely cool yet, we couldn’t wait any longer. We chose a remote location, where it wouldn’t be too warm, where most other people wouldn’t follow. In fact, the site is famous as a hardcore destination necessitating a 45-minute drive up along a treacherously winding and ruggedly unpaved path to get there, impossible without an SUV, 4WD required if muddy. Once there, no electricity, no hot water, no toilet, no store, no phone reception. Roughing it, a concept that Korean camping culture does not embrace. For reasons that now escape me, MtG and I had our very first camping trip here, way back when. Not knowing anything else, it seemed to us that this is what camping would be like everywhere. Great to be back.
(See also GLOBAL FOOD GLOSSARY)
(See also RESTAURANTS IN KOREA)
(See also CAMPING)