Slow Train, New Year

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On New Year’s Eve Day I pulled out of Busan Station on a slow train to Seoul called the Mugunghwa.  The route takes almost twice as long as Korea Rail’s KTX– five and a half hours versus two and a half– but with views like this, I was grateful for the stretch in time.  Perhaps one of the most peaceful ways to travel anywhere is sitting in a train car, listening to the wheels roll along the track.  The Mugunghwa‘s also close to half the price.  

This year I’m looking for ways to create more time in my life, which, when I pare the idea down, really means I want to do more of the things I love with the time I have.  With me on the train was a week-old Korea Herald and a just-begun copy of Anna Karenina, which my mom gave me the night before I left Canada almost 11 months ago.  Sun on snow lit up the window frame.  The mountains were dusted in white.  I would visit Seoul for 45 hours, ringing in the New Year with my friend Peter before returning to Busan the evening of January 2nd.  I’ll live in Korea another year, I had decided–staying on in Busan for at least seven months, if not longer.  

It’s a beautiful ride.

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