In about two weeks, I’m going to have a lot to write about.
In 13 days, on 2016-07-27, I’m getting onto an airplane.
In about 12 and a half hours after that, I’ll land in Seoul, where I’ll be met by a former classmate, Hong, whose family will host me for the following 2 days.
About 23 hours after I land, my best friend, Brian, arrives. I’m hoping to do some quick shopping that next day while we wait for him. We will be taken out and shown gay nightlight in Korea that evening.
The following morning, on 2016-07-30, Brian and I will spend the afternoon visiting the DMZ with a tour group (tho, by policy, WITHOUT our local host!) and possibly do some more shopping before getting onto another airplane that evening.
In about 5 hours after that, we will land in Ulaanbaatar, the capital city of Mongolia, where the real adventure begins.
After spending a day and 2 nights alone in the capital city feeling disoriented, we will fly to the Gobi Desert and spend 16 days with a driver and a guide trekking back through the desert and central Mongolia to the capital city.
Along the way, we will visit the spot where the first dinosaur eggs were discovered, ride camels across sand dunes, and participate in the morning chant at the oldest surviving Buddhist temple in Mongolia. We’ll hang with nomad families, and learn about their lives and customs. Maybe we’ll learn archery or cooking from them. We’ll relax under the stars in mineral hot springs, and ride rafts down a river.
After the desert adventure, we’ll be rewarded with 5 more days and 4 more nights in the capital city, by which time I really do hope we’re feeling more comfortable in the country. We’ll almost certainly spend money on gifts for friends and family, and we’ll have the opportunity to enjoy a full weekend of Mongolian nightlife.
We fly out again late in the evening on 2016-08-21, arriving back in Seoul around 4am on 2016-08-22. Brian will spend about 12 more hours before returning back to the states.
Following Brian’s departure, I will enjoy about 6 more days on the ground in Seoul.
On 2016-08-27, I will get onto a final airplane and travel back in time, landing in San Francisco about 4 hours before I leave Seoul.
But, for now, all I have is an introduction.