These dark and a blurry images are taken from the inside of a fascinating lava tube, a few kilometers west from Seongsan. As its name indicates, this long cave was created millions of years ago by the lava of the then active volcano in the middle of the island. Over time, it cooled down, and formed some of these cool lava columns. Only a small part of the many kilometers of it is accessible to the public, but we still get to wander around for a bit, trying to imagine how this place was when it was still filled with a super hot, red liquid coming from the earth…

After that amazing visit, we go to a maze, only a few meters from there. Way less impressive, but we still have a lot of fun, maybe even more than some of the kids there :p

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On the way there, the bus left us quite far, and we hitchhiked. So, we join the main road again, and we get lucky, because the woman who picks us up decides that we would like to see the beach close by, so she drops us off there. Sure, why not! 😀

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And that’s not even the best part. We again hitchhike from there, but don’t really think before doing so, so we’re on the wrong side of the road. Another nice woman stops, and when we tell her where we are going, she enters the address in her GPS, turns around and starts driving there. She hadn’t planned to go there, but she tells us she came from Seoul and is just driving around the island with no specific destination, so she is happy to drive us. I’ll never say it enough, I love hitchhiking in Korea, I love Koreans 🙂

All of these encounters and experiences give me a lot to think about…

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“Love is not selfish. It sounds so simple, so obvious, yet I’m still learning it everyday. These last few days, I’ve come to realise that I’ve always looked for the things people I loved did wrong, especially with romantic love. Not only of course, and I do consider myself as a forgiving and patient person. But too often, I let people’s mistakes towards me define them, when I should have concentrated on the good. Nobody’s perfect, me the first. We all act stupidly and egoistically sometimes, we all lie, we all hurt others. It is so easy to hold grudges, it justifies that things went wrong, it puts the blame on the other person. But heck, life’s so short. Life is way too short to concentrate on the bad things when we should praise the good. It’s no surprise that love hurts so much in such conditions. I have personally suffered  a huge amount because I kept expecting others to be a certain way and ended up disappointed as hell. I see it now, it was selfish, thus it couldn’t be real love. Love is not selfish. Love is about accepting the other in his or her entirety, as he or she really is, despite all their flaws and mistakes. Whether they love you back or not, whether they’re there or not. Anything other than that is not love; it’s attachment. So, to all the people  I have once loved, I’d like to tell you: Wherever you are on this planet, I hope you’re happy. I hope you all make mistakes and grow from them. I hope you have forgiven me for the pain I inflicted to you if I have. For my part, I have no trace of hatred left for any of you, even you people who have sent me in the worst, dark places. I gave you the power to do so; only me and my selfish love. I forgive you and love you all.
If this is how growing up feels like, it feels good…”

The next day, we’re off to Udo, the tiny island we can see from where we are.

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We plan to stay there for a night, but after a short, 20-minute ferry ride that brings us to the main port, we don’t really know where to go. We start walking and looking for a guesthouse, but almost every place is full, and the ones that are not are way too expensive for our budget. This is frustrating and I’m starting to lose patience. I am usually more optimistic than Luke in these situations, but this time, he’s the one who stays cool, and he suggests that we rent bikes for the day, leave our bags there and then go back in the evening, since we have no other option. I’m not very happy about the situation, but travelling is like that! Things rarely go as planned, and we just have to deal with it. And it turns out very well, actually, because once we get going, we start appreciating the incredible beauty of Udo, and relaxing.

We even cycle past a guesthouse that we hadn’t seen, which is actually more of a homestay, and the lovely man who runs it gives us a good price for the night. We now have a place to stay! Yaaay! 🙂 We keep on discovering the island, in a much better mood. It is small so, in a couple of hours, we have gone all around it.

After a lovely day, it’s time to go back to the bigger island! We return by ferry the following day, and take a bus to our next destination, Seogwipo, south of Jeju.

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