An elderly gentleman approached me as I took these photos. He had enough English to tell me his age (70), to point to his home behind a stone wall, and to tell me that he was born there. He also confirmed the identity of the plants.
It’s another reminder that we’ve been here a year. These are common sights in this part of Jeju in late summer – bundles of the plant propped against walls, spread on the ground in car parks, on cycle ways, at the side the road. The difference between last year and this is that I know what it is. I should have worked it out earlier: it’s sesame. The pods are filled with seeds.
The photo below shows bundles of sesame leaning against a low stone wall and covered with plastic. It also shows a couple of tombs in the field behind, Mt Dan, and, furthest away, Sangbansan. That’s not a bad landscape to pass on the way to the supermarket.
I didn’t just take shots of the panoramas from Mt Dan on Saturday – there were plenty of things to photograph in macro mode. With the sunlight and the colours, it was a treat. Here’s a selection.
The spider is a type of golden orb-web spider. It’s very common here, although I was surprised to see one so late in the year. I guess this is a female as the males are much smaller.
We’ve seen the hill in the foreground of the photo above often enough, south of the road between Global Education City and Musuelpo, but I’d not been able to find out it’s name until yesterday; it’s not acknowledged on any map I’ve seen, even though it’s quite a substantial outcrop. Now I find it has two names, Mt. Dan or Bagumji Oreum, the latter (according to a notice on the approach road), because “its shape conjures up a huge bat spreading its wings”. The same notice says that the feng shui is ominous.
Quite unexpectedly, we found there was a way to the top. It was a bright, clear day (which isn’t bad for 11 days before Christmas) and there were views across the whole of south-west Jeju. The photo above looks southwards to the sea; the photo below looks northwards. There’s a series of oreum on the horizon, and Mt. Halla is behind the promontory in the foreground. Global Education City is in the middle-distance of the photo below, although you can’t pick it out at this scale.
And here’s one more photo looking southwards – I’ve written about that lump of higher ground in the distance before: it’s Songaksan, the southern tip of Jeju.