Sunday, August 17, 2008


I left Seattle at 1:40pm on Saturday and 10 hours later I'm in Seoul and it's Sunday evening.

Leaving Dave and Sabrina was NOT easy. I know I'll see them in 2 weeks in Taiwan...but this is the first time I've ever been by myself without one or the other. And the fact that I'm a 10 hour flight and basically a day away doesn't help. I was just fine until we separated at the airport when I went through security. I just cried and cried while I loaded my bags on to the x-ray machine. I kept looking back and Dave was holding Sabrina waving her hands at me. I go again. Dammit.

The flight was fairly uneventful except for the man next to me. I was in the window seat. He was a Korean man in his early 40's who was watching a movie on the mini tv that is on the back of the seat in front of us. Throughout the the entire flight I only got up once to use the restroom and stretch my legs. I unbuckled my seatbelt and then motioned to him and the girl in the aisle that I needed to get out. She got up and stood in the aisle. He unbuckled his seatbelt...BUT DIDN'T MOVE. I was looking at him and the girl in the aisle was looking at him. We waited. It looked like the movie must have been at a good part or something...he almost looked like he was waiting for a commercial to come on.

Does this seem a bit odd? Rude, maybe? Well, I sure thought so. Especially after I had already spent the first 15 minutes of the flight being smacked in the face by his newspapers which he insisted on reading with both sides completely open. Anyone with an iota of manners (or has ridden the NYC subway at 8am) knows that you are supposed to fold back your paper so that you don't give your neighbors tiny papercuts all over their face and neck.

So, here he is...headphones still on and holding the remote control, (why is there a remote control for a mini tv screen that is less than an arm's length away? Literally, it's sitting 10" over your knees.) making us wait for him to get out of the row. Did I forget to mention that there are no commercials and that the remote control allows you to rewind and fast-forward? So, was this dude really going to be missing anything? Did I also mention that I needed to go to the bathroom and it had been 5 hours into the flight? Dude - get out of the way.

He did. Finally.

I got my revenge - although it wasn't on purpose. We were served our meal and I chose bibimbap. There was a packet of sesame seed oil and a little tube of gochujang for the dish. I added them to my bowl and then put the packets to the side of my tray. I grabbed the little container of kimchee and it accidentally sent the empty package of sesame seed oil flying...which landed directly on the guy's knee and proceeded to drip whatever remaining oil was left over to form a perfect circle in the middle of his knee on his pants.

I said, "Oh no! I'm sorry!" then grabbed the packet off his knee. It really wasn't on purpose but for some reason I felt it was karmic retribution. Take that!

I arrived in Seoul and Dave's cousin, Yunsuek, picked me up at the airport. Yunsuek visited us in Park City this past winter and we got to know each other a bit. He is a cool guy. We went to dinner with his mom and dad and ohhhhhhhh, it was GOOD. We had sundubu (one of my favorite things to eat, ever), bossam, pa jun and makgeolli (unfiltered rice wine). It was D.E.L.I.C.I.O.U.S.

I have a full day of work on Monday and then there are plans to go to dinner with a bunch of Dave's cousins. Hopefully I can stay awake. I woke up at 1:30 am and haven't been able to go back to sleep...which is why I'm writing this at 3am Seoul time.

See ya!

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