I Love My Hareubang!
Yes I love my hareubang! If there were a bumper sticker to that effect, I would surely have one. Hareubangs are large mushroom-like statues found on Jeju Island off the southern tip of Korea. They are considered to be gods offering both protection and fertility and were placed outside of gates for protection against demons traveling between realities. My hareubang is not an antique hareubang, just the typical tourist souvenir variety, but it has kept me company, protected me, and kept me fertile for 20 years now. More importantly, my hareubang reminds me of my circuitous six week journey around the South Korean peninsula.
Before leaving Seoul, a friend of mine taught me how to say I would like to buy a hareubang in Korean, and armed with my new found linguistic capabilities, I set off on my journey. Everyone I met along the way was greeted with I would like to buy a hareubang which got a lot of laughs and turned out to be a great icebreaker. Upon reaching the island of Jeju do (home of the hareubang), I finally found my porous basalt beauty who now resides by the door in my loft in Downtown Los Angeles. Isn’t he cute?
Nikon D3 DSLR, AF NIKKOR 50mm f/1.8D, exposure: f/11.0, 1/6 sec., ISO 400, exposeure index: -2, tripod: Nikkor MC-20 remote cable, Manfrotto 3221 with Manfrotto 3265 pistol grip ball head.