April 17: Arrival at Masan
by Mie
We arrived at Masan in the evening by learning the major history of Korea on the way. As my younger brother visited Masan last month on business, I have heard an outline of the city by viewing some pictures he sent me. The city, however, is larger and more crowded than I had expected.

Before going to the hotel, Mr. Lee took us to a Korean restaurant. After finding a small parking lot, we walked through the narrow street and came up to a place like this.
When we entered the restaurant, what I saw first was many vases like this. They are used to make and preserve "Kimchi", famous Korean hot pickles. The smell of Kimch makes my mouth watering.
We were guided to a larger room in the back. A table stove was soon arranged for roasting "Purkogi", a tasty beef barbecue. "Aren't you tired?" Mr. Lee kindly asked us and filled our glass with beer. The beer's name was "Hite", it was light with fresh flavor. On the table is Kimchi (left, yellow lump.) Sliced beef is roasted on an iron plate, and add soybean paste, sesame oil, and Purkogi sauce to it on a broad leaf of lettuce. Then we enjoy the wonderful flavor of roasted beef and fresh vegetable. We fully enjoyed the dish tonight.
After the dinner, we took a walk around crowded narrow streets. Masan was not destroyed by two wars (World War 2 and Korean War.) There are many old houses and streets in the city, but they are rapidly replaced with new facilities. Mr. Lee said some people are looking for good ideas to cope with both historic sites and modern comfortable life of the residents. he suggested us see both sides of the town.
Wagon sale in the street. Black bar-like roll is Sushi, red lump is Kimchi, of course, and a kind of Kimchi soup is simmering in the pod releasing appetizing aroma around the street.
So beautiful display of the wrapping dishes attracted my attention. They are "celebrating cookie dish" with many kind of cookies neatly arranged on the dish.
This is a bedding shop. The bedclothes of Korea are thin. Yes, in Korea, people heat their houses with "Ondor", a Korean heating system from under the floor. This reasonable and ideal heating system eliminates the need of thicker and heavier beddings. As I am very sensitive to coldness, I envy it. The bedding sets with brilliant color are really great.
Young people are still filling the streets even after ten in the evening. Mr. Lee explained, however, the dropping economy of Korea caused the decreased number of the restaurants, such as small and old traditional ones. He feels something lonely to realize it.
Here. we came back to the parking lot. The hotel, with four Althea ranking marks, was very close from here. Tomorrow morning he will kindly pick us up about half past ten. Thank you very much Mr. Lee for your hospitality today.

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