I enjoyed peeking over the walls in Yangdong Village, catching a glimpse of daily life. In others, we were able to enter onto the property. True to any place, some of the homes looked very orderly and neat, while others appeared spartan, and still others were quite cluttered. Laundry was strung next to some homes, their brighter colors contrasting with the natural-colored buildings, bare trees, and brown grass. Satellite dishes were mounted on a number of the thatched roof homes - definitely a modern upgrade. Fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, and a few fire hydrants were prominent - reminders of the flammable nature of these old structures. Quite a number of homes had dogs tied up in the yards, but they seemed quite well-behaved and were very tolerant of strangers walking by. One scruffy one was particularly friendly and wanted some attention.
For lunch, we ate in a nondescript traditional homey restaurant, likely a home whose front room was converted into an eating area. Taking our shoes off (as is custom in Korea), we sat on cushions around the low tables. Here we enjoyed Kalguksu (meaning “knife noodles”). Ready to pay, we called for the lady who served us, but she was not around. We found our cook out in the potato field, working with hand tools (they had no machinery or tractors). After visiting another hill in Yangdong, we boarded a bus and headed back to Gyeongju.