A Going Away (of Sorts)

I had a good weekend. Friday I went Hashing in Pyeongtaek. I lost the umbrella that Alex gave me for teacher’s day. I was a little pissed about that. It was really nice. I left it on the train. I was sitting right between two people and neither of them said a goddamn thing. That made it even worse. One guy looked straight at me while I was waiting for the doors to open. In general, losing things in Korea isn’t a big deal because you can just go back wherever you left it and no one will have touched it. But no one goes out of their way to help you with shit you leave behind either. I guess it goes both ways. So it goes.

Hashing in the rain is a lot of fun. Once you step in that first puddle and get your feet completely wet, it’s a lot less uncomfortable. But the first minute or two while you’re still relatively dry, that feeling of “Oh god, I’m getting wet and there’s nothing I can do” is pretty bad. Ended up going to Songtan instead of coming back to Cheonan Friday night. Luckily I had a couch to crash on, instead of paying for a hotel.

Anyway, yesterday was a going away party of sorts in Hongdae. A friend of mine is going on vacation to Thailand, so he wanted to have a send off shindig before he leaves for a couple weeks. I got there around 7ish. Chilled in the park a bit watching a silent disco. They hand out/rent earphones turned into a frequency that a live DJ is playing on outside. It’s a cool idea, but it’s a little annoying if you’re not taking part in it. I’ve heard it’s fun if you have the headphones though.

We hit up Exit Bar for a rock show. Couple friends started up a band called The Getaway Sticks. Good shit. Actually, the sound at Bar Exit pretty much blows, but they sound good in Cheonan. Check ’em out if you’re in Cheonan. After the show, I tooled around with a group, club hopping. Lots of dancing happened. Soju and tequila make all things possible. It’s strange when you see change in yourself. It’s not like I expect to stay exactly the same forever. But when you look back and realize “Man, I never did this before,” it’s a little strange.

Anyway, I ended up staying out all night. Coming out of the club and seeing the sun is a complicated feeling. Part “Oh yeah” part “fuck”. Caught a train home at like 6:30 AM and gave my friend a ride home. It was his first time on a scooter. Giving people a ride on a scooter is always entertaining. Everyone rides differently. People who are familiar are the easiest to give a ride because they know how to stay out of my way so I can see when I look over my shoulder and they don’t lean on you too hard, but newbies are fun in their own way.

I napped until about 2 PM and then got my day started. Went and bought some new earphones since I lost mine last night at some point. Had dinner at the awesome Chinese place with a friend. I’m currently listening to George Thorogood and re-reading my favorite web comic — Achewood. So good.

Anyway, my last thing worth mentioning is how much I’ve come to enjoy watching Korean TV. Korean TV is incredibly easy to follow without sound, as long as your can read Korean. Almost everything anyone says is matched with sub-titles. There’s also lots of extra shit they write all over for humor or information. I watch TV when I eat out and at the gym, and both places there’s no sound, but I can still follow everything. The last thing I watched was something called “I Love Pet”. Kind of just a show about people and their pets. They come to your house and interview the people about their pets. This particular show had a segment about a cat that likes fire. Particularly from scented candles.

So the whole thing was about this cat literally putting his paws on the flame and then licking his toes. They did experiments like putting fish on a table next to the candle to see if he’d rather play with fire or eat fish. He chose fire. They tried using unscented candles and lighters to see if he had a preference. They tried seeing if the other cats liked fire too — they did not. It was goddamn hysterical. I was running on a treadmill giggling like an asshole.

Anyway, it’s going to be a long week. Saturday I get named at the Hash in Songtan. I’m also Haring (laying the trail), so that’s gonna be cool. That’s gonna be an event. I’m really looking forward to it. It’s going to make the whole week go so slow. Then next weekend my vacation starts. I think I’m passing on Malaysia and staying in Korea instead. I’m considering traveling to Jeju Island and hike Halla-san, Korea’s tallest mountain. Today a friend asked if I’d like to travel to China over Korean Thanksgiving — Chuseok — and I gave a tentative yes.


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