Fantastic Travelogue #5 – Inside the Golden Dome…sigh

Sometimes you have some amazing adventures you just have to tell everyone about. Read the rest of this account here.

 

Have you ever done something that you knew was a bad idea and then as soon as you did it, you realized it was a very, very bad idea? That was how I felt as I stood in front of the stone circle in the clearing, with the strange woman in animal skins and a purple veil smiling creepily at me. I must have been mesmerized, since I sure wouldn’t have gone out there on my own. Even my adventurous spirit was whimpering in the corner, asking for mommy.

The woman walked to the edge of the stone disk and stepped delicately off. As she did, the soft glow that enveloped it faded. A few of the women took out lanterns and held them up as the woman walked towards me. We were about the same height—over six foot—which was rather intimidating. She said something to me and when I didn’t respond, she something else in what seemed like a different language. She went through almost a dozen languages, and all of them sounded foreign to me.

“I’m sorry,” I said finally, in English and Korean. “I don’t understand.” I gave her a sheepish smile and shrugged.

She burst out laughing and then shrugged her own shoulders. She kept saying things and shrugging her shoulders as if it were a huge joke. I was starting to blush with embarrassment and the other women were looking distraught and studiously avoiding looking at her.

The woman stopped and barked a few orders at the women. Then she linked her arm through mine and we all started walking back down towards the fortress village.

Seriously, what would you have done? I would have given quite a large amount of money not to have been in that situation, but I felt trapped. There seemed no way of escape, short of punching and pushing them all out of the way. So, I let myself be led along, just a big, dumb lamb to the slaughter.

We reached the fortress town but to my surprise, the women didn’t stop. The fortress gate was open and we went right through and continued down the valley. I looked around for the pretty young woman I had met that afternoon—not that I liked her or anything, I just wanted to see a familiar face. She was nowhere to be seen though.

The woman kept looking over at me and smiling and saying stuff, as if she expected me to understand.

I don’t understand you at all, Your Royal Battiness! I thought. I admit, it wasn’t very clever, but I was desperately trying to cope with the situation. Unfortunately, calling her that made me smile, and she thought I was smiling at her.

The next twenty minutes were an ordeal of awkwardness I’m going to pass over quickly. She thought I understood a little of what she was saying and kept speaking slower and louder. I would have gladly gnawed my own arm off to get away.

Just when I was seriously considering punching her and making a break for it, the forest path opened out into a wide clearing and the tower with the golden dome loomed up in front of us. It was surrounded by a low wall topped with torches. The flickering torchlight glinted off the golden dome, making all kinds of effects with light and shadow.

The Golden Dome

The gate was open and guarded by women with spears. We went into a room with a low table in the middle and surrounded by lamps, so that it was fully lit. The woman sat down on one side of the table and motioned for me to sit opposite her. I decided to try to communicate: the old woman in the forest had understood Chinese characters, so it was possible this woman would too. I traced out my Korean name in Chinese characters on the table and I could see instantly that the woman knew what I was doing. She barked a few more orders and pretty soon a woman came in with paper, a brush and an inkstone. I’d never written with a brush before, but I did my best and wrote my name again (大成).

“Di-sheng?” she said. My Korean name is Dae-Sung, so close enough. I nodded. She grabbed the brush and started to write quickly, which I couldn’t read at all. After a few minutes, she caught on and wrote it all again, very meticulously. I didn’t recognize it all, but I saw the word for “come” (來) and the one for “place” (場) so I figured she was asking where I was from. I’m from Canada, but I don’t know how to write that in Chinese characters, so I just wrote “America” (美國).

“Mai-gog?” she said and burst out laughing. She was really getting on my nerves. She pointed at me and said, “Mai-nan” and then pointed to where I had written America. I didn’t get it until she wrote down some more, but when I did, it didn’t make me feel any better. “America” in Chinese characters literally means “beautiful land” and she was saying that I was from there since I was a handsome man. Evidently she didn’t believe such a place existed and thought I was just playing with her. I wished my wife was there. She wouldn’t have had any problem punching a creepy old woman who was hitting on me. I, on the other hand, was too much of a wuss gentleman.

After she got over the hilarity that is the word “America”, she gave a few more orders to the attending women and they brought in a map. I could tell that she wanted me to point out where I was from. She pointed to one place and I realized it was our current location. It even had a tiny picture of the dome.

The problem was, it wasn’t a map of Korea. It wasn’t even a historical, rough approximation of Korea. I don’t know where it was, but I got a sinking feeling as I stared at it that, all the same, I was there.

Advertisements

About David Stewart

I am a writer of anything quirky and weird. I love most genres of fiction and in each there are stories that I would consider "my kind of story". View all posts by David Stewart

7 responses to “Fantastic Travelogue #5 – Inside the Golden Dome…sigh

Let me know what you think. I appreciate all comments and criticisms.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

My music canvas

you + me + music

Eve In Korea

My Adventures As An ESL Teacher In South Korea

Luna's Writing Journal

A Place for my Fiction

Bikurgurl

Traveler, Wanderer, Storyteller, Blogger, Outdoor-Seeker, Gardener, & Voracious Reader, sharing bits of my life here

Here's To Being Human

Living life as a human

The Moving Quill

Writing & Blogging by Shailaja V

jenacidebybibliophile

Book Reviewer and Blogger

yuxianadventure

kitten loves the world

Strolling South America

10 countries, 675 days, 38,540km

It's All in Finding the Right Words

The Eternal Search to Find One's Self: Flash Fiction and Beyond

Reflections Of Life's Journey

Lessons, Joys, Blessings, Friendships, Heartaches, Hardships , Special Moments

A Writer's Path

Sharing writing tips, information, and advice.

Chris Green

Tales of Mystery and Imagination

Finding Myself Through Writing

Writing Habits of Elle Knowles - Author

Commendable Soap

"...the manufacture of stories... a business safe and commendable as making soap..." Willa Cather, 1920

BEAUTIFUL WORDS

Inspiring mental health through creative arts and friendly interactions. (Award free blog)

Total Time Waste

A Humor Blog!

Claire Fuller

Writing and art

TALES FROM THE MOTHERLAND

Straight up with a twist– Because life is too short to be subtle!

Unmapped Country within Us

Emily Livingstone, Author

The Found Girl's Bookblog

A lost girl found by good books

Silkpurseproductions's Blog

Learning how to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear.

BJ Writes

My online repository for works in progress

wordsandotherthings.wordpress.com/

she is confidence in shadows.

Musings on Life & Experience

Poetry, Fiction, & Non-Fiction Writings

Outside The Lines

Fun readings about Color, Art and Segmation!

obBLOGato

a Photo Blog, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to dear dirty New York

Björn Rudbergs writings

Poetry and fiction by a physicist from the dark side

SightsnBytes

A.K.A. Ted White

WordDreams...

Jacqui Murray's

Life in Kawagoe

Japanese daily sight

The Day After

Musings, Photography, Writng, and More

Mondays Finish the Story

This is a flash fiction site where you finish the story!

Sketches By Boze

An ongoing exploration of faith, culture, myth, life, art. An advocate for all who are trapped in nightmares.

Tiffys World

A diary type blog following the life of a Forensic Science Student

San Diego Professional Writer's Group

A San Diego based critique group for professional and aspiring writers

Five Years to Mediocrity

chasing kitties, crashing scooters, and learning spanish, one anxiety attack at a time

athingirldotcom

never judge a girl by her weight

The Discerning Christian

Philosophy, Christianity, Social Justice

€merald Wake ©

❤ The art marked by the Pain ❤

Fiction et al

Navigating the modern business of book publishing

Yarnspinnerr

Just Fiction and other things that seem fictitious.

The Chicago Files

A CANADIAN EXPAT'S EXPERIENCES AND OBSERVATIONS LIVING IN THE WINDY CITY!

%d bloggers like this: