Sunday, September 2, 2007

beegees....quesadillas.....and raw armpits

as i was walking across the university campus on friday morning, all of a sudden i heard the bee gees playing over the loudspeakers hanging from every lamppost! it was an experience similar in its eeriness to the aquarium sashimi restaurant, yet this time i was quite amused and enjoyed it very much! i couldn't stop smiling or humming! then on came luther vandross! i think it was in another lifetime that i remember listening to luther! took me back to those infamous high school gymnasium dances.
on friday night a veteran teacher here at yeungnam invited me to "la cantina." "WHAT??? there's a mexican restaurant nearby??" i exclaimed in both disbelief and overwhelming excitment! "follow me," she said. as we approached the establishment, my hound dog sniffer caught the heavenly scent of burritos on the breeze. instantly, i was salivating and broke into a sprint! the restaurant is run by a canadian guy who used to teach at yeungnam university, but has since gotten married and opened up this great little place a stone's throw from my apartment building. we ordered beers and quesadillas (with chips and guac of course!). talk about elation. after two weeks of homemade grilled cheese and korean food, even if it's great grilled cheese and excellent korean food, i was THRILLED to be getting some mexican food into my body. i probably eat mexican food two or three times a week back home and one of my main food groups is chips with guac. the food along with the music that was playing (bruce cockburn, the rolling stones, bob dylan, neil young, tori amos) put me into a state of sheer bliss. i couldn't believe my luck that night! and come to find out, many of the teachers gather there and those who are musicians play live music on the weekends....i think la cantina might turn into my new home away from home, away from home! by the way, korea makes some pretty decent beer.
yesterday i was on a mission to get a massage...to relieve my muscles from the stress of carrying those 4 damn bags across the world some days ago. i had heard that traditional massages in korea can be quite rough. i don't think i fully understood what rough meant. i came out of my hour long session bruised to the bone! my armpits were rubbed raw. i swear to god. it was a once in a lifetime experience, quite possibly never to be repeated! the woman who gave me the treatment was very sweet though. after she was finished she gave me hug after hug, kisses on the cheek and really, really powerful slaps on the back. she wanted to know if i thought the massage was good. i nodded and smiled and bowed, telling her in the only way i knew how that it was wonderful, as i'm sure in korea it was a wonderful massage! maybe i will venture out and try the experience again someday, not too soon, but maybe someday....when my armpits heal.

1 comment:

Vicki said...

Jessa,
Your dad forwarded me your e-mail with the poem. How lovely it was.
What an amazing gift you have for painting mental art,I felt like I was there with you! The music and the mexican scents make me want to have chips and salsa for lunch. Haven't had any Korean beer but it may need some further research on my part. Cart it all home and have a meal "a la Jessa". And, your poor arms! That must be agony. Hope you heal quickly and let me know if I can send you any salve to keep on hand for your next massage.