Exhaustion fogs my mind as rain patters down against the door to my AirBnB. I listen to it as long as I can then close my eyes, thankful that I'm warm, that my hiking shoes have finally been discarded at the entryway, and, of course, that my overflowing Osprey backpack dries by the fire place. At the kitchen counter, my host puts together a midnight snack with sweet potato and honey. He sets the dish in front of me, and we look again at the map that we had, at least two hours ago, smoothed out on the table.
"My ancestors came from this area," he says, pointing to the west then plowing through an abbreviated few centuries of Korean history--and his own modern-day life pursuing green-energy hospitality. The sleep that had been drying my eyes and nodding my head stops for just enough of a second to ask another question that spirals into another, and another.
My host answers them all. I apologize for my stream of thoughts, but he counters by asking me questions about American culture, about what brought me to South Korea. I lean back, eat a little more sweet potato, then tell him as much as I can, lulled by both rain and good company.
From guides to rants.