“Monks, prisoners, conscripts, have the support of rule: they live as they are ordered to. The exile has nothing but himself to depend on. If he chooses to lie on the ground and yell, he may be a nuisance but he is not an offender. If he he tries to be a model exile, he makes a rope of sand. His conformity is of no account, and is based on guesswork, anyway. Accident may tell him he has guessed wrong, experiment on experiment may lead him to guess right. But that, too, is by accident. He plays a kind of Hunt the Thimble without knowing what a thimble looks like.”
– “The Climate of Exile” by Sylvia Townsend Warner
So I have this laryngitis-cold-thing and sound like Tom Waits. It’s cool. I hope it never ends, though if it didn’t I’d probably lose my job. Can’t teach English if you sound like the Cookie Monster. I went to the doctor’s this morning. Some details: they do stuff like take your blood pressure and temperature in the waiting room. So folks are all around you waiting while a nurse takes your blood pressure and looks in your ears and whatever. Then they have you go back to sitting down, while you wait for the doctor to see you. The doc was a youngish guy and wanted to know about my mucus and stuff. His English wasn’t great, but whatever. Between Jin and me, we could figure out what he was asking. He sprayed some stuff down my throat and some more stuff up my nose, then gave me a prescription. Easy peasy. The thing is I feel fine. I just sound like death.
Price for visit and three days of meds: less than 10USD. I pay into the National Health Care program about 60USD monthly, but damn, a five buck Doctor visit? Yeah. Not complaining.
There’s nowhere to get breakfast in Pohang on the weekends. It’s crazy. Say you’re up at 8AM and decide to walk along the beach, if you’re lucky maybe, just maybe, you’ll find a coffee shop open. Even the toast places don’t open until 10:30AM. And. They. Make. TOAST!?! Doesn’t anyone in this town want to drink coffee outside of their house early on a Saturday morning?
It’s become so bad I’m starting to daydream about opening up a restaurant that would just serve two eggs, toast, and hash browns. We’d be open from 6AM to noon and that’s it. Nothing but breakfast.
I also regularly daydream about learning how to play Iron Maiden’s “Number of the Beast” on the ukelele, so yeah, pipe-dreams both of them.
A complaint I hear regularly from expats is that X (where X is some Korean thing like beer or gum) tastes like chemicals.
“Korean beer sucks. It tastes like chemicals. Where can I get good gum? Korean gum tastes like chemicals. Anyone know where I can get shampoo online? Korean shampoo tastes like chemicals.”
(Yeah – I don’t know about that last one either.)
But my question is where the hell are these people coming from and what were they eating there to know so well what chemicals taste like?