My back is KILLING me already. Today I had to harvest dead hot pepper trees to bundle up and truck back to the mill: we'll burn them tomorrow to make ash to cook fiber in. It's insane work; I was straddling piles and laying on them to use my body weight to break them down. I didn't even try to throw them up onto the pickup truck but I DID get to ride on the back of it for a moment to help get it back up some ice on an incline. You know when you ride the train and see random people doing random things in large fields? That was me in the field today. I saw a bunch of trains pass.
There's a lot of down time and also lots of INTAKE time when people are talking at me incessantly. SO MUCH INFO and I can't get it all...I just have to remember now to bring pen and paper so I can write it down. I witnessed some amazing paper spinning techniques and even some weaving/basketry today but was so sleepy that I almost fell into the container of popped corn I've been eating today. The food is good. The people are very nice. They all are like, why are you doing this suffering?? It really makes no sense.
My motel wall has sparkly walls, one is entirely covered in huge pink flower wallpaper. A huge bug was crawling around in the bathroom today. There's no internet there. But the water pressure and hot water are GREAT, so I got my first real shower in a loooong time yesterday. It's pretty barren here and a couple of dogs always bark when I leave the motel and come back, as well as the dog at the mill. Food options, eek. But people here are WAY more concerned about eating than back home: EVERYone here was like, what did you have for dinner? How will you eat breakfast? And so on. It's nice, in that way, to be in a culture w/a long history of food prep and traditional ways of cooking and eating w/the seasons. I guess it also comes from a culture where you had to eat to survive.
Too soon to tell if I will try to go to Seoul on the weekends (more like, on Sundays). The ski pants were mighty handy today. My top layer count: 6. My bottom layer count: 4. Today was fine, but then again, today was not as cold as it will get. As weird and lonely as it is right now, and as much as I was thinking the whole time in the field, "I cannot imagine a life w/o Dr. Cristina Yang in it," I'm thankful to be back on track in terms of having some kind of PURPOSE in life. I don't feel that way yet, but I think I'm at least on the road and not lost in the forest.