Thursday, June 9, 2016

Winter Wonderland - South Korea (Part 3)

My winter program include an activity which requires the participating students to stay for two days and one night in a ski resort, so on a Friday morning the students gathered by the campus lot and all of us hop on a bus for an hour and a half away from Seoul to Welli Hilli Park in Gangwon-do, a recreational ski resort with multiple ski facilities. It is also said that the particular place is set as one of the venues for 2018 Winter Olympics. The place is located nearby numerous mountainous hills and slopes and is available for various kind of winter sports for all ages. All of us gotten pretty excited as we arrived at our hotel and readily got our ski gears after series of icebreaking activities (Ha! How punny -- ice breaking, you get it?). With hundreds of student preparing their gears and everything, we all finally started our ski lesson at night. Unfortunately, I didn't bring my camera at the time so the pictures here were taken on the next day.

Despite all the fun, skiing is so tiring. I was in a group with three other Indonesian and three out of four Indonesians in our group sucked big time; our reason is that we're tropical kids who had never try out any kind of winter sports and you can really see how we were so unfamiliar with this sport. I fell on my knees multiple times, my ski clothing was soaking wet, my feet were hurting from the cramping ski boots and my heart beat fast everytime it is my turn to practice because there should be a great control of speed and balance. Climbing is a hassle and sliding down is a scary thing. I've never been good in sports that requires balance so I spent half of the night sitting on top of the snow cheering for everyone else practicing on my team. It was a great experience but in all honesty, it is not for me but learning it is such an experience.

I woke up the next day and there's another ski course session -- a more advanced one which many had skipped because of its level of sufficiency you were required to have and many of us were too tired, too wimpy, too sleepy or even too hungover. Those who didn't join the session spend the morning until the afternoon exploring the recreational center under the hotel: I practiced baseball with automatic machines,  had multiple rounds of bowling courses, bought soo many bags of grilled squid cooked directly inside a convenience store, had multiple plates of vegetarian dishes in order to avoid pork and primarily enjoyed the scenery of the ski resort on top of the gondola which were continued by taking hundreds of pictures on top of a snowy hill while others were enjoying skiing, snowboarding, bobsledding, etc.

I am truly grateful for the time I spent at this resort. With the same people but different surroundings and environment, there were so many good experiences that we're having here. The weather was also amazing, even though the place is snowy there were not much breezing wind so it's not as cold as the places we visited around Seoul before we had gotten here. The rest of the experience were just so rewarding. I learned a lot from this and the chances I get o become closer with my friends from a various nation is the memories I really appreciate. 

Oh my, writing this makes me more and more eager to meet up with the rest of the Indonesian gang next week!

Read my other posts on the South Korean trip, here: