Sunday, October 9, 2016

Bad mom confessions.  Lilly hurt her ankle on Thursday and I ignored her complaints (because she had spent the previous week chronicling every mosquito bite and minor bruise on her body) until we couldn't get her shoe on for school on Friday morning. This, of course, was 4 hours before our train left to Jinju for the lantern festival.  So we bought her a brace and tried to limit her walking, which is kind of impossible in this land of public transportation.  When I don't exercise in the morning, I still average 5 miles a day.

Jinju was great.  On our shuttle bus to our guesthouse (guest houses for the win! 6 twin beds makes this momma happy!) we passed by a big hullabaloo that we quickly figured out was the Korean Drama Awards...and there was a red carpet surrounded by a bunch of girls in school uniforms.  I hate to confess this on the blog, but the girls and I have kind of gotten into Korean Dramas over the past year.  Obsessed?  That's kind of a strong word. Addicted? Nah.  Do we enjoy them? Oh, yeah.  So our shuttle bus drops us off and we have to walk quite a ways to find our guesthouse.  As we are getting the run down at the guesthouse we hear the screams of high school girls at the Red carpet.  It was right around the corner. So Hannah quickly announced a change of plans and we went to have another pretty Korean experience that involved being pushed around by a bunch of fan girls.  Hannah is still bitter because she's pretty sure her favorite actor came before we were there.  We only saw a few people arrive but actually recognized one from a show we've been watching in Korea.  Funny story. On Friday morning, Hannah said she wanted to see a famous person in Korea.  Done.
As Chloe said, the Lantern Festival was lit. They had lanterns you could make and float down the river but they also had huge themed lanterns all along the river that ranged from historical lanterns to Disney lanterns.  My personal favorite was the part that was above the river, along the fortress wall. I kind of have a thing for fortress walls.  They're beautiful!  This fortress wall was a little ruined with displays for the festival, but it was still pretty amazing.  All of the "lanterns" on the wall either were related to Korean culture (games, food, period costumes) or they helped tell the story of the Imjin War in 1592.  Yep, the lantern festival is more about celebrating an important battle than about the romantic notion of sending lanterns, complete with your wishes, down the river.  The girls found a musical going on and it turned out to be a musical about the Imjin war. It was really well done for a free musical at a festival.  We loved it, even if we only got to see the last 15 minutes of it.  The rain let up a bit (apparently I brought rain to Korea...they've had more rain for this month than normal. Feeling a little bad about that but I do enjoy the rain.) so we headed to make our lanterns. Hannah didn't want to join in on the lantern making festivities so we told her to watch. Of course she changed her mind as I was paying and then was like a little kid as she followed her lantern down the river.  Silly Hannah.  Some of the girls made deep wishes about us being kind to each other and some of us wished for a trip to Harry Potter world.  They all write their Korean names on their lanterns and released them down the river.  Was it a little crazy to take a a train to a tiny town, paying for the most expensive guesthouse yet so we could release lanterns down the river? Absolutely.  It was a short but fun trip that made me glad I have daughters.  I don't know if I could have gotten sons on board for a lantern floating excursion.

Side notes:

Lilly's ankle was worse when we came back. I suck at parenting.  Don't worry. She riced it all day and it's much better.   Koreans are more into rhce. They think ice is horrible for sprained ankles.

The girls tried snails! I thought 3 out of 4 liked them but have been corrected. Chloe liked them.  She actually wanted more with breakfast this morning.

We've now made it through 2.5 sessions of conference. I loved Jeffrey R Holland's home teaching talk and Quentin L Cook's talk about looking beyond the mark.  Conference is the best!

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