songjeong beach and yonggungsa temple
i’ve been wanting to go to the beach temple since the week i got here. last week, i finally made my way out there. there was just too much wonderful stuff there to even photograph it all, not to mention everything that can’t go in a photo — the smells of the incense everywhere, the cooking bean paste cakes, the steaming pots of tiny sea snails and silkworm larvae that they served for snacks. missing, too, is the sound of buddhist chanting and wooden sticks clanking, the sea pounding the cliffs on which the temple’s situated. still, i did my best.
on the way there, we tramped around the cliffs. found a rotting pigs head covered in maggots. heard it was a chuseok offering. i didn’t take a picture because… who wants to look at a fetid, infested pig’s head?
ben the adventurer did all this and more in flip flops. that’s what happens, i suppose, when you spend your whole childhood barefoot in the forests of alabama.
bean paste-filled goodies.
is it Zen to sell mad buddha and happy pig trinkets?
there were these awesomely noble statues of the 12 animals of the Chinese zodiac. some lady went up to each one in turn and kind of petted them all. most people jut left coins in clever places all over them.