So that’s that. My Asian tour is over. I fly tomorrow at 10.30 from Osaka back to Europe. Did I enjoy myself? Well yes, but I am ready to go back to Europe. Business wise, I think it has been a real success. I have found out where all of the World’s titanium production is heading (Korea) and I have had some wonderful food. I feel that I am stagnating though, allow me to explain.
Business travel means for one thing lots of meetings, it also means entertainment in the evenings. Good food, good wine, nice breakfasts, spending the days and evenings with the same people. There is then the catching up with emails when you get back to the hotel and finding the time (literally finding a mutually convenient time) to speak to The Pretty One, who is in London. I feel like I haven’t done anything different forever. Exercise is something alien to me (the swimming and the run being the exceptions).
I have some things that I would like to add about Seoul. The country itself seems quite isolated. Physically they are, but it reminded me of a former Eastern bloc country in some respects. I say this because all of the buildings were high rise (although they were all very new and clean) but more because of the vehicles. Everyone drove a Korean car. European or American, or even Japanese were rare vehicles. This is like being in a former communist country. I am not saying that it was like one of these though. Clearly the economy is a lot better, capitalism is clearly booming.
Japan and Korea were interesting countries. I am glad that I have been to them, but honestly I felt kind of cold having left them. They didn’t have the energy that other parts of Asia have that I have experienced, and although Japan is somewhere where I am sure that The Pretty One and I will visit (we like to do food holidays anyway!) In this respect Japan has a place in my heart, and I will return, but I definitely need to leave the cities. There is a fakeness in the built up areas, which is almost Vegas like. Plants, light, islands! All fake. I need to discover the real Japan.
Pictures are all from Seoul. The views from the hotel, and the worlds best stocked bike shop.