Fact, not boast: The majority of the time that I've been on earth, and definitely most of my adult years, have been spent living outside of my home country. And/but because I've spent a minimum of a couple of years in those foreign lands, they actually start feeling like home -- or, at least, not so foreign -- after a time.
As an example, it's been a while since I've truly experienced "the shock of the new" in Hong Kong -- a place I had visited several times, then moved here to work and live in back in May 2007. So, for this Photo Hunt, I've turned to South Korea -- where I visited last fall and took hundreds of photographs of such as the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Hwaseong Fortress and the environmental regeneration miracle that is the Cheong Gye Cheon stream.
How foreign is the Land of the Morning Calm to me? Suffice to say that this recent visit was only my second ever to that country -- and the only one thus far in the 21st century. Also, that I don't know more than five words of Korean -- and so far know its culture mostly only by way of its movies and food.
Even so, when visiting a place like the 18th century Hwaseong Haenggung built in the reign of the visionary -- and famously filial -- King Jeongjo, there was no way that I could not appreciate the palace's spartan (by royal standards!) beauty and feel privileged to have been able to get time to wander around its grounds -- and, in the process, get some sense of what life was like and meant for those who spent time within it in centuries gone by.