Tuesday, August 24, 2010


This an account for the events happening during Day 24 of The Jeju Big Swim for Monday, August 23, 2010.

All times are approximate, minus the cell phone log.

3:00 a.m. - Sherrin wakes up at her apartment in Samyang.

3:45 a.m. - Steve wakes up in his Samyang pension.

4:39 a.m. - Cell phone, Incoming, 32 seconds, Sung-mi. She is wondering where we are and how I am getting to the starting point.

4:45 a.m. - Sherrin picks up Steve.

5:05 a.m. - Sherrin and Steve pick up Sung-mi, who doesn't sleep. We are off to the harbor near Seorim Suwonji, where the kayak is locked up.

6:00 a.m. - After taking roads 1132, 1135, and 1132 again, we arrive and prepare.

6:35 a.m. - A Korean Coast Guard officer appears and checks us out. Sung-mi has a video camera and has no problems with filming and getting all up in his grill.

6:38 a.m. - I find out my digital camera is non-functional today.

6:45 a.m. - We are off in the water. Sung-mi is riding in the front, operating a video camera, and cell phone, plus has a digital camera ready. I am paddling in the back.

6:46 a.m. - Sherrin jumps in off the harbor's concrete stairs.

6:47 a.m. - Coast Guard officer takes pictures of Sherrin swimming.

7:15 a.m. - Sung-mi tells me she is really sick and asks me if I can land her on some rocks over yonder. I tell her it's not possible, but I will keep a lookout for a landing spot. I tell her to have a plastic bag ready.

7:45 a.m. - Sung-mi starts eating a nectarine or peach.

7:48 a.m. - Sung-mi announces she is not dizzy anymore because it was the hunger causing her head to spin.

7:55 a.m. - The once empty plastic bag becomes heavy.

8:00 a.m. - The plastic bag and its contents enters the sea.

8:10 a.m. - A concrete dock, jutting out from shore appears, and Sherrin and I safely land Sung-mi.

9:27 a.m. - Sherrin and I arrive at Sindo Harbor, about 8 kilometers from our starting point, in 2 hours and 45 minutes, pacing at almost 3 kilometers per hour. From Dongil-ri, along the way we passed Ilgwa-ri, Yeongnak-ri, Mureung 1-ri, and Sindo 1-ri.

9:28 a.m. - Cell phone, Incoming, 17 seconds, Eugene.

9:39 a.m. - Cell phone, Outgoing, 10 seconds, Sung-mi.

9:39 a.m. - Cell phone, Outgoing, 16 seconds, Sung-mi.

9:40 a.m. - Cell phone, Outgoing, 1 minute, 16 seconds, Sung-mi.

9:45 a.m. - Eugene arrives at the harbor, helps us figure out what is going on, and takes us to this fish farm: Auskor Aquaculture System [Please read guest blog by Eugene, above entry], run by Kim Yong-cheol.

10:00 a.m. - We arrive.

10:15 a.m. - Sung-mi comes with a friend and she starts filming and taking pictures of the fish farm tour.

10:30 a.m. - Sherrin and I both eat a raw shrimp; I elect to eat the skin, as well.

10:51 a.m. - Cell phone, anonymous text.

11:00 a.m. - Eugene takes me from the fish farm to Jungmun Beach, where my scooter is, sans any key.

11:07 a.m. - Cell phone, Outgoing, 45 seconds, Mr. Lee (Bike Shop).

11:25 a.m. - Eugene lets me loose in the Jungmun Beach parking lot.

11:27 a.m. - Cell phone, Incoming, 55 seconds, Mr. Lee (Bike Shop). The locksmith is apparently looking for me. I tell him he can't miss a profusely sweating foreigner who is covered from head to toe.

11:30 a.m. - Locksmith arrives, looks at my scooter, gets his tools out, and starts working.

11:35 a.m. - Locksmith tells me wait a minute, he needs to go back to his shop and get his other tools.

11:36 a.m. - Start baking in the sun, and then in the shade.

11:45 a.m. - Cell phone, Incoming, 29 seconds, Mr. Lee (Bike Shop). I receive the price for the locksmith making another scooter key.

12:15 p.m. - Locksmith finishes with the key, after moving the bike into the shade. He tells me I need to follow him back to his shop.

12:38 p.m. - Leave locksmith shop with two new scooter keys and four additional pension keys. En route to Sindo Harbor.

1:15 p.m. - Arrive at Sindo Harbor, find Sherrin sleeping under a gazebo, resting for our 3:30 p.m., departure time riding the next tide.

1:45 p.m. - Like a scavenger, start feeding on whatever is in the food cooler.

1:55 p.m. - Sherrin bloodies her knee after slipping and falling while we get the kayak in the water and around to some rocks due to low tide.

2:00 p.m. - Scout the coastline, with the scooter, the next 4 or 5 kilometers we are going to cover in the afternoon session.

2:10 p.m. - Cell phone, Missed call, I have no idea whose number it is.

2:47 p.m. - Cell phone, Missed call, Eugene.

2:52 p.m. - Arrive back at the gazebo at Sindo.

3:00 p.m. - Sung-mi and her friend meet us, as does Kim Yong-cheol from the fish farm.

3:08 p.m. - Topic of discussion: Sociology.

3:30 p.m. - Mr. Kim helps in launching the sea kayak. Sherrin and I are off to Chagwido.

5:31 p.m. - Cell phone, Missed Call, Young-lim.

5:43 p.m. - Cell phone, Missed Call, Young-lim.

5:45 p.m. - We enter the harbor at Chagwido, immediately east of Wado, or Wa Island, having passed the incredible stratified scenery of Suwolbong.

5:49 p.m. - Cell phone, Outgoing, 41 seconds, Young-lim. She was at the harbor 1 kilometer north waiting and filming the scenery.

6:00 p.m. - Young-lim makes a LOUD entrance.

6:10 p.m. - With everything loaded, Sung-mi and her friend drive Sherrin back to her car at the harbor closest to Seorim Suwonji; Young-lim drives me back to my scooter at Sindo Harbor.

6:31 p.m. - Cell phone, Outgoing, 31 seconds, Sherrin. At Sindo Harbor, about to hop on the scooter, Sherrin says her party is lost. I ride back to Sherrin's car to pick up my camera; Sherrin rings up Young-lim who is heading to Jeju-si, but who then makes a U-turn to retrieve Sherrin and they caravan back to Samyang.

6:41 p.m. - Cell phone, Missed call, Sherrin.

7:45 p.m. - Arrive at Mr. Lee's Bike Shop near Seosara in Jeju-si for an oil change after bombing straight through 1132.

8:15 p.m. - Arrive at my pension.

8:40 p.m.- At Sherrin's place (not me), Young-lim inspects the rooftop view.

8:44 p.m. - Cell phone, Outgoing, 42 seconds, Sherrin.

8:51 p.m. - Cell phone, Incoming, 8 seconds, Sherrin.

9:00 p.m. - Arrive at a samgyeopsal restaurant in Samyang next to the bus stop. Have dinner with Sherrin, Young-lim, and Suzie (not sure how to spell your name), who proclaims "I'm just the dog walker," while Sherrin is active in The Jeju Big Swim and Tracie is relieved of her duties.

10:15 p.m. - Finish off a bottle of soju and two bottles of beer, mixed. Officially, the second time I have drank during the project.

10:25 p.m. - In pure Korean fashion, Young-lim, after much anticipated build-up, asks Suzie if she is single. Here we are, just four single people eating dinner together.

10:32 p.m. - In pure Jejudo, Korean style (everyone knows each other, connections are SO important!), we receive "service" of raw hanchi because the restaurant owner's daughter previously took a French class from Young-lim at Jeju National University.

10:34 p.m. - And for the last morsel of Korean cultural sameness, the daughter is distracted picking apart our bill, so I can pay for my booze separately, while watching a Korean drama.

10:35 p.m. - Young-lim's mouth takes care of the problem.

10:39 p.m. - Depart the restaurant, dreading the next morning's first day of school.

11:00 p.m. - Sleep.


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