I had thought that Japan is pretty hard work, but this was before I came to Korea. Gradients of 10% + are normal here, meaning that I am very, very often pushing my bike because it is just too steep. My bottom bracket is making all sorts of funny noises again and my speed hub should have had an oil change 7,000 km ago, so steep climbs is what I least need now. Luckily we could find a lot of quiet country roads that compensate for the climbs.
We are also facing a new problem here: water! Although taps are ubiquitous, our guidebooks tells us not to drink tap water. Other foreigner we asked do not do it either and in restaurants you are served filtered water. So where do we get drinking water from? It is not a problem around lunch time, because we usually fill up with water in the restaurant where we eat lunch - now that we can afford it we are eating out a lot! The problem is getting water for camping in the evening, but luckily John came up with a very creative solution: Churches! Half of the Korean population is Christian and therefore churches are everywhere. I have to add here that Korean churches are about the most ugly ones I have seen. They are all very modern and very tasteless, but they are usually open and have a water dispenser. So ask and the Lord will give!