Well, I made it back on Tuesday night. Just in time for Christmas. It was the first Xmas I've spent on this side of the world in several years. It felt good to be back. It felt even better that I got two good night's sleep after returning.
Anyway, I wanted to share one last adventure. After experiencing 6 time zone changes in 8 days I arrived into Seoul, Korea where I had a 14 hour lay over. So it was off to speed tourism; I went shopping, had multiple things to eat on the street plus two restaurant stops, 1 temple stop, and 2 palaces). In the middle of all this of course there was the obligatory stop at a public restroom.
First let me rewind a bit. Last year, I also had a stop over in Seoul, but I got no further than the airport. When I used the restroom, I was confronted by an older woman who said something to me rather aggressively in Korean as I waited in line for my turn. So I said to her, I'm sorry I don't speak Korean. She responded, This for woman not MAN! As I had just gotten off one of the most miserable red-eye flights of my life¦ shall we just say, I was not the mood? So I responded (rather aggressively), Yes? and? would you like me to prove IT? and began to unzip my black winter jacket. With that she seemed embarrassed, quickly averted her eyes and said oh I don't know. and walked away.
Fast forward to Tuesday. As I walked into a public restroom, I was again wearing my black jacket, jeans and winter beannie (ok, ok I looked like a guy¦ I know), there was a woman who kinda starred at me. I paid her no mind and continued on my business. When I came out of the stall, I was stopped by two older women. One muttered something to me in Korean; all I could think was great here we go again. So I responded in as high pitched a voice as I could, I'm sorry? I don't speak Korean. with that the woman gasped and said something else and smiled/laughed. She then said something to her friend and then back to me and then patted me on the chest as if to say, You jokester you! You fooled me! Let me tell you it didn't stop there! She continued to talk to me and all I could do was smile, and wash my hands. When I was done washing my hands she hugged me! YES SHE HUGGED ME! When she let me go she was holding my arm which moved to holding both of my hands. When she discovered my hands were freezing she noted this to her friend. So they both took a hand and started warming them up in theirs!
This is what I will remember from my experiences in Seoul.