Below my hotel window on Yongsan army base, cabbies salute the dusk with glowing cigarettes. Their mismatched plaids make them perfect extras for a Caddyshack remake; not at all far-fetched in this golf crazed country. Above, Namsan Hill fills a quarter of the horizon, and Seoul Tower looks like a space age, aqua-blue flag stick on the back of a monstrous, terraced green. It’s a rare night without smog, so I walk the course.
It’s a brisk 45 minutes to the top. Dodging busloads of Japanese and Chinese women who come to Seoul to shop, I make it to the base of the tower.