For quite a while I’d been wanting to get down to the south-western corner of this peninsula: Mokpo!
I guess that all that time it’d been in the back of my mind, expectations had been building, so when I got there the reality that is Mokpo did not live up. It’s four hours on the bus from Seoul.
<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunnybreaks/3252902978/” title=”DIRTY MOTEL WINDOW by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3031/3252902978_b4bcc90239.jpg” width=”375″ height=”500″ alt=”DIRTY MOTEL WINDOW” /></a>
Maybe it’s errornous of me to draw a conclusion after less than 24hrs in the place, during winter, but the town seems down. Down on its luck. Dependant on fishin’ and the fish aren’t selling like they used to. People were not especially pleasant–all the brashness of the big city but with only a pop. of 234000. Reminded me of Busan in that way, and a little of Yeosu. I’m fairly sure that people in Busan were rude because me as whitey looked like russian whitey. It may have been the same in Mokpo, but I didn’t see any Russians.
As was fitting, I luncheoned on the famous ‘Marine Products’. An hour or so later felt the urgent need to go to the toilet. I suspect it was the soup with muscles in it. There were some that were only a little open, so I jimmied them open with a spoon. That should be okay shouldn’t it? I mean – if they were bad eatin’ then they wouldn’t put them in my soup, right?
Once again, I felt let down by the information in the Lonely Planet guide. The directions from the express bus terminal to the downtown area were plain wrong, and the rates for motels were inaccurate– which is what happens when the book is two years past it’s printing date. But then, when the hell _isn’t_ it two years out of date? It always feels like it is. Printed-on-paper travel guides seem like an out of date concept.
I think there’s room for some kind of “facebook” like network for travel info. The key being that there’d have to be some sort of micro-payment system for popular/useful information submitted.
In any case, the ammended plan, should I ever head that way, would be get there a little earlier in the day, and keep rolling to one of the islands like jindo or whatever.