The Seoul Forest is a natural reserve in the middle of the great city, although the onset of winter meant there was little life on display other than hardy souls venturing out for some power-walking sessions beneath the cold, clear sky. The Galleria Foret loomed impressively over otherwise flat plains.
Because the sky was so clear, it made for some good opportunities to snap the sun, here highlighting the dry and sparse beauty of winter.
Of course, I’d come for some horse ridin’, and so felt obligated to take some pics of the track…
…and the exercise pen as well as the stables in the background.
Why the long face? (Couldn’t resist.)
It was the first time I rode on a horse in something like 13 years, so I’d forgotten how fun and difficult it was. Getting the horse to go in the direction you want was surprisingly easy (they’re trained, after all) but to keep it going was not. It kept slowing down or veering off-track, and my attempts to spur him on wasn’t apparently tough enough, according to the instructor. My heel had to connect with the horsey’s midriff with sufficient force to make a ‘thwack’ sound, which I thought was pretty harsh until the beast strayed once too often, so I began to apply whatever force I could with the soft and comfy Adidas trainers that probably felt like cushions on the horse’s rippling muscles, the cheeky animal. You can’t help but love horses, though – their perfectly toned and smooth bodies are attached to such lovable, kind-looking faces.
Anyway, the 45 minutes seemed to fly by, and then I was off to munch on some marinated pork barbecue, with a quiet resolution to one day command a steed of my own. Compared with my childhood dream of owning the Lotte Giants, it’s much more down-to-earth, and fractionally less expensive.