Monday, July 30, 2018

quick note about Saturday

I met an old friend and blog buddy this past Saturday: Charlie of KimcheeGI fame. He's retired from the US Army, but he can still get on base, so he treated me to dinner at Oasis, the taco/salad bar inside the Dragon Hill Lodge. Stepping on base is always a bit surreal for me: the place is so thoroughly American that it really does feel as if I've passed through a wormhole-membrane and somehow ended up Stateside. This feeling is augmented by the fact that the majority of people on the grounds are Americans; there are plenty of Koreans, to be sure, but twangy, nasal American English is what you hear around you (plus the occasional bit of Spanish). It's uncanny, and it does make you yearn for home.

The meal was great, as always; I may have disappointed Charlie by not opting to go to a different restaurant for tomahawk steaks, but I had told Charlie up-front that I'm not much of a steak guy. Conversation ranged all over, with the inevitable (these days) dip into politics. We gorged ourselves on several platefuls of food, then we parted ways, with a promise to try to get together more often (Charlie lives about an hour south of Seoul).

Before I hailed a cab, I had to take a dump (with my digestive system, every meal I eat creates the urge to poop out the previous meal), so I headed down into the bowels of Samgakji Station.* Just outside the restroom, I saw there was a coin-operated dispenser at which you could buy a pack of ass-wiping tissues; I stuck in a W1,000 bill and punched in "11" to get the big pack. I hit "enter," the metal coil whirred and spun, pushing a tissue pack forward... and then it stuck. I chuckled, despite the waste of my money, and inserted a second bill, assuming that, this time, the pack would fall down. Nope. The coil spun again, and a second pack of tissues had become wedged against the first. I laughed out loud this time, even as my ass was gibbering for sweet release. Illogically, I inserted a third bill... same result. I should have taken a picture of those three tissue packs, all impossibly wedged into each other at the top of the dispenser. Sighing, I inserted a 500-won coin and punched in the number for a smaller-sized pack of tissues. The coil whirred... and that pack got stuck, too. Motherfucker. I still found the whole situation funny, and I kept my temper, refraining from kicking the machine in the spirit of percussive persuasion.

Shrugging, I walked into the men's room... and the toilet stall had free rolls of tissue in it. I had kind of thought that might be the case, but sometimes the mind and the cosmos conspire on an unconscious level to propel you into ridiculous situations, and that's just what happened here. Note to self: check the toilet stalls first next time.

Anyway, I did my business, came back to street level, grabbed a cab, and enjoyed a nice ride back to my place, pleasantly digesting the experience—both physically and mentally.



*This was actually my second dump. I took one on base as well, so I guess this was Dump Part Two. I sometimes wonder if I suffer from IBS, partly because I often do these two-part dumps. I wish the shit left me all in one session, but for some reason, my guts balk at releasing everything in a single go. Should I be chugging prune juice? I've heard some people say that running helps make you regular. Hmmm...



1 comment:

John John McCrarey said...

You would not do well without running water.

I'm not sure if you visit Yongsan often enough, but my last time there I was struck by the ghost town feel of the place. Now with USFK moved south, there aren't many folks left there. DHL is supposed to remain open, but the ROKs are having second thoughts about that.