Templestay, Homesick, and Milkyway

Letter from Yeosu
February 5, 2011
Runaway photo of the week: Templestay robe. Thoughts?
February 7, 2011

Templestay, Homesick, and Milkyway

I am at Hwaumsa for a templestay and I am feeling the universe. I was expecting some level of awesomeness but not this much.

Between an evening pray session and bed time which is 9pm, is a free time. Some devoted people are continue meditating and praying and I was just looking around the area. First thing I’ve noticed was the night sky. Hwaumsa is in the Jiri mountain which is the second highest mountain of the country. You can say it’s one of the cleanest air and least expected light pollution. So I was expected to see some great night sky but I took my breath in when I saw this.

I made a friend here. We were talking about writing and blogging which is what I do and apparently what he does as well. I said my goal this year is island hop and he told me his great island spots. During the time, we were looking up the night sky. It’s temple and it’s a mountain, so just few lights and no smog. Imagine that.After he went in, I grab my camera and took photos with things I could do as a tripod. Well, it’s great enough to hold it to a certain angle. πŸ™‚



Even though I was expected to see it but I was so surprised because I guess.. I was too citi-sized. Not even a proper word but you know what I mean. I travel, I photograph and I look up the night sky as often as possible but because I am living in the city, I guess I constantly forget how beautiful this can be. Frankly, this is the best sky I’ve seen in a while after long stay at Lake Tekapo, New Zealand.



It is great because I was with friend. I think. I haven’t met many Koreans who like to travel, at least travel like I do. And I met this friend and he likes to travel and he is a writer. So we were talking about travel stories, his projects, my blog while looking up the night sky. At this point, I felt a little bit of a homesick. Not like ‘I miss home and mommy’ kind of homesick, for mother tongue. Because I am always talking about how beautiful my country is and how amazing I felt in English, so there’s always some level of lack of expressions. I felt like I didn’t say enough. While I was talking to him, I realize there are so many beautiful words that I can’t even start translate to English and how sad that is. But it’s okay, I can say through photos and my heart. πŸ™‚



Maybe because I am at this temple, maybe because I met a new friend who I can share my love of writing or maybe because I am on holiday, no matter what the reasons are- the night sky today is worth to stay out and freezing myself.

I didn’t do any post processing because I can’t at this stage but I it is good just way it is. Perfect for night at temple and for #AstronomySunday.


Juno Kim
Juno Kim
Juno Kim, Originally from Seoul, South Korea, Juno set off for the wider world to pursue her passion for travel and storytelling. She traveled the world as an award-winning travel blogger and photographer, witnessing the everyday life of different cultures. Currently based in Anchorage, Alaska and exploring this amazing Last Frontier. Follow my journey through @RunawayJuno and Instagram .


  1. ayngelina says:

    Oh wow Juno, totally in awe of those photos!

    • Juno says:

      I had to look up the expression in the dictionary, and thank you! πŸ™‚ I had so much fun in a while. Thought wish I brought my mechanical camera and expensive film. Would make a great shot. Oh well, nevermind!! πŸ™‚

  2. Giulia says:

    Hey Juno, I’d love to know a bit more about the pray sessions!
    Amazing pics chica… Am a sky lover too as you know πŸ™‚

  3. Evan says:

    This is a great post Juno. πŸ™‚

  4. Awesome pics. I can’t believe you took those without a tripod πŸ™‚

  5. Meaghan says:

    i’m really glad you met a korean “seoul mate” who loves travelling and writing as much as you do! I must met this person. Perhaps he is my future husband…

  6. Amy says:

    Pics are beautiful. Must be frustrating for you to not find all the right words!

  7. iamthewitch says:

    Oh my.. the stars! They’re amazing!! Definitely not easy to capture stars since you need to see them on a clear night with lots of sparkles in the sky.. well done! πŸ™‚

  8. Bryony says:

    AMAZING Juno! So beautiful and you expressed your feelings so well! I felt like I was there. Thank you for sharing.

  9. Andrea says:

    Wow, Juno – awesome photos! None of my starry night photos ever come out right…I’m a bit behind on my communications and had no idea you were doing this retreat…sounds fantastic =)

  10. These are really stunning images here…I envy that you spent the night at such a peaceful place πŸ™‚

    I can spend hours looking at such a star-lit sky and make connections all the time…

  11. holy cow! those photos are awesome! can’t believe the stars stand out so well. love it πŸ™‚

  12. Nancy Olsen says:

    I like your β€˜holy cow’. Would make a great shot. Click here to cancel reply.

  13. Lauren Oaks says:

    Wow! those pictures are truly amazing aswell as… inspiring. You are living my ultimate dream haha πŸ™‚ I’ve always wanted to travel ever since I was little. I rarely even see the stars where I live (london) because of all of the lights.

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