3.3 Fall 2021

October 31, Spook

Sundays are a blessing because my Korean teacher always sends me off with a new bit of inspiration, especially when I feel ground down by COVID and expat life.

I left class happily to get my nails done and then wandered around looking for Halloween candy to drop off at House Owner’s place.

I had just exited a foreign snack shop when a young man stopped me.

For a weird moment I thought he was chasing me down because it looked like I had stolen something.

“Is there a problem?” I asked, having to look up even though I was wearing three inch heeled boots.

“Yes. I like you.”

Wow okay. Man has got confidence.

He extended his hand for a handshake on the narrow sidewalk as a group of passing girls grumbled “what is going on?”

“Are you a student around here?” He asked in amazing English.

I almost laughed.

“No, I’m not.”

“Do you speak Korean?” He posed in Korean.

I answered no only to kick myself for blowing cover but he didn’t notice.

“How old are you?” I asked curiously.

“I’m 19.”

It is truly a miracle I didn’t burst into hysterical laughter right in his face at that moment.

“Oh, you’re a baby,” I said, patting his shoulder. “I’m 29.”

“29?” He paused and counted on his fingers only to follow up with, “oh, I’m 21.”

As if his Korean age would make a difference. He hadn’t even done military service yet.

“I understand your purpose.” He said in a surprising show of maturity, indicating he knew this interaction would not end in success for him.

I wished him a happy Halloween as he stood there still a little confused at being left behind, but thankfully didn’t follow.

Then I got in my car and laughed for about a thousand years.

Is this a sign of changing COVID times? The pick up artists are back on the streets!

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