Saturday, 26 April 2014

Three Days, Three Ports - Part 3: Jeju Island, South Korea

April 19, 2014- On this very cool, 12C, overcast and windy day with rain threatening, we bucked our tradition and opted for a half day Celebrity tour featuring a cultural village and ancient volcano crater. The Seongeup Village was interesting in its own way, but a little more information on its history would have helped put it into some kind of context. The site emerged off the highway looking something like a tourist park, but in fact it was a real community, real people scratching out a living with home gardens, poultry and pigs, water jugs, bicycles, shoes by the door and tangerines.
We motored on to the Sangumburi Crater, a 130,000 year old volcanic maar described as:
“The wind rises from the windpipe of ancient times and following its breath,
the sunny field is rolled up with wild flowers.
The waves of silver grass at Sangumburi.”
Had the weather been better, I’m sure we’d have been more impressed but the ‘atmospheric’ day rendered the crater less than astounding, details muted by mist.
The day was subdued too by the knowledge of the ferry sinking just off Jeju Island. The tragic loss of so many young lives clearly weighed heavily on the heart of our Korean guide and indeed all of us. As we sailed out of the port tonight the seas are indeed very rough with 2-3metre rollers and white caps galore. My thoughts and prayers are with the families and all who are working so hard in such adverse conditions to rescue who yet cling to life in small air pockets.
Lord hear us when we cry to thee for those in peril on the sea.

©2014 April Hoeller

Note: since first writing this post it has become apparent that none remain alive on the vessel – a tragic loss.

1 comment:

  1. Seems the weather Gods were also weeping over this tragedy. Hope the families find the strength and fortitude to cope with their loss and grief.
    Here's wishing you joy and inspiration in onward destinations.