Three bows to Buddha
Bibimbap, rice cake, melon
Shady spot of peace
About the poem:
Buddha’s Birthday is a national holiday in South Korea. On my day off of work, I went to a nearby Buddhist Temple, Yongunsa, here in Samcheonpo. First we visited the main prayer space, slipped off our shoes and bowed three times to the main Buddha statue. These are full bows, meaning that for each you start standing, then kneel down and bend forward, touching your forehead to the ground, then come up.
Then we chose one of the many bibimbap serving lines. Older ladies served us each a bowl with the veggies and kim (seaweed), we added a dollop of gochu sauce, and in another line we added the rice.
We sat and at the bibimbap, then went for the dessert: watermelon, Korean yellow melon, and rice cake.
It was a very hot day, but there are many shady spots to sit, resting and enjoying the holiday.
Many Korean holidays are family-centered (bowing to ancestors graves). So this was great for me, as I went with my Korean friends and could participate!