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One Fine Spring Day
2015년 05월 12일 (화) 14:47:12 GLOBE globe@jbnu.ac.kr

The spring in Korea is amazing as the weather is usually nice and warm and the flowers start to bloom, especially the cherry blossoms. The fantastic thing about the spring is that wherever you go, you can see these beautiful trees and flowers. In every corner of the CBNU campus, we can see cherry blossom trees, so there is always an opportunity to take photos. When I look at the cherry blossoms, I feel that I am in my own little world as when I look up towards the trees. It takes all the stress away and I feel at ease. The cherry blossom season gives Korean people a reason to go out with their loved ones and take pictures or 'selfies'. As the beautiful white and pinkish colour of the cherry blossoms only last for a short period of time (maybe two or three weeks), many people are trying to go to special locations to properly view and enjoy them. As for me, I decided to go cherry blossom watching in Jeonju Zoo because it is famous for holding a cherry blossom night festival known as 동물원 벚꽃 야간개장.
On a sunny day last week, I brought my foreign friends with me to the zoo as some of them have never been to the zoo and seen the night time cherry blossom festival before. Because of these two reasons, we decided to go an hour before sunset; so we can see everything at daytime as well as night time.
It took us thirty minutes to walk to the zoo but the walk was quite enjoyable as the weather was nice and the scenery was pretty. When we arrived, there were a lot of people queuing in lines for the tickets. Fortunately, we did not have to wait long and the tickets were pretty cheap (only 1,300won).
When we entered the zoo, I could already see many groups of people and children having fun; be it taking photos, having picnics or taking a stroll around the zoo to enjoy the beauty of view.
As well as having numerous rows of cherry blossom trees, the zoo also has many other attractions: the mini theme park, the animal zoo, the picnic areas, and many more. At the entrance, there was a place filled with beautiful tulips and children-friendly sculptures. Moreover, as we walked further in, we could see the mini theme park, where we can go on various rides, such as the Ferris Wheel, the bumping cars and the Viking. One ride is not expensive, but buying a package deal for three or more rides is a better option as each of them is cheaper than buying it individually.
After looking around the mini theme park, we finally saw the animals! As the weather was getting colder and colder, we were not able to see the hippopotamus, the tigers, the elephant and the giraffe. Instead, we got to see several other animals, such as donkeys, lamas and monkeys, all of which were very cute.
Whilst my friends and I were walking to different attractions, I realised that in the zoo there were two Hanbok rental shops where visitors could rent a Hanbok for the day. I knew that because I saw many young couples wearing matching Hanboks, and taking photos beside the attractions, and the cherry blossom trees.
As the time went by and the sun started to set, big theatrical lights were turned on and the start of the night time viewing of cherry blossoms began. Although the weather turned really cold at that time, the sky was clear, so my friends and I were able to see the cherry blossoms clearly. It was so amazing seeing the trees at night, especially when the colour of the lights were changing. More and more people came to the zoo, and sometimes it was difficult for me to find my friends or for them to find me. Nevertheless, those moments of being alone, and looking at the cherry blossoms gave me joy, but sadness at the same time as I know that I will not be able to see this beautiful view in England.
After taking a large amount of photos (and a change of my phone's battery), my friends and I decided to go back to the Gujeongmun (구정문) to have dinner there as the Gujeongmun area is filled with delicious and reasonably priced restaurants and it is near the CBNU campus. After having a nice dinner with my friends, we decided to walk around Dokjin park. The park does not have many cherry blossoms and does not have many things to see, but it provides a tranquil atmosphere, and the bridges in the park looked dazzling. At that night, the park was quiet, so my friends and I were able talk properly. We sat down on a bench facing the peaceful scenery and talked about our lives in CBNU and our futures.
That week had been really stressful for us with all the assignments and homework; thus, being able to spend a day to be in harmony with the nature really helped eliminate the stress and refresh our mind.
I was glad to have contemplated the beauty of Korea's spring because spring is short here and experiencing it now is better than never. Given that some of us will not be in Korea next year, making these memories is special to us. I hope that all of you are making great memories in the spring and if times are hard just look outside and appreciate the scenery for a moment. Enjoy the moment while it lasts.

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