The more things change, the more they remain the same

I mentioned the other day that Jin Hee, one of the bar staff at the new Debut, was a familiar face to me.

I did a search in the blog archives and found one mention of her back in August 2005.  It was a longish post mostly concerning my trip back to Korea after attending a conference in New York City.  This is the pertinent part of that entry:

“On the way back home I stopped off at Bar Episode for some darts. Got my clock cleaned by Jin Hee, one of the bar girls I chat with there. So it was midnight, I had been up about 30 hours and I got home and crashed hard”.

Last night I popped back into Debut to renew acquaintances.  She’s hard to read (that hasn’t changed) but she seemed mildly impressed with the above referenced recognition. She claims to have not played darts in years and is sure she is not very good.  I know my game is much better these days, so I’d like to think I would extract my revenge.  My entreaties to meet up some time for a game (Debut does not have a dart board) drew a non-committal response.  I fully understand.  Sunday is her only day off and I expect she has better things to do than spend it in my company.

Both of our memories are pretty hazy given the passage of time.  I recalled she had a boyfriend in China and she corrected me that it was Shanghai.  She said she had waited for him to return for her for 5 years and he never did.  If she’s to be believed, that was her last boyfriend.  I told her I recalled taking her out to dinner for her birthday (December 5 she reminded me) and buying her a cake.  She had a vague recollection of the event.  I didn’t mention this, but I had a pretty serious crush on her at the time.  When she stopped in at my villa in Hannam-dong for cake I thought maybe I’d get lucky.  I didn’t.

Anyway, she eventually left Bar Episode and I moved on to other adventures.  Episode is long gone now, except in the fading memories of old farts like me.  And yet, here we were on a Saturday night over ten years later sitting at the bar sharing drinks.  I guess I was ten years older than her then (which of course I still am).  But the difference between 60 and 50 really isn’t that great.  And she seems every bit as disinterested in me as she ever did. I am definitely stuck in the “customer zone”.  She’ll be nice to me in exchange for drinks on which she earns a commission.  And I’ve learned enough over the years to know when the pursuit is pointless.  Ah, but thanks for the memories!

When I did my weekly weigh-in this morning my scale registered 243.8 (twice).  That’s the same as last week.  I was disappointed but not really surprised.  When I attended Sung-Ha’s birthday party politeness dictated that I partake in the homemade lasagna.  And of course I had a taste of cake and ice cream as well.  I’d also snuck in more than a few beers over the preceding several days.  I consoled myself with the fact that I hadn’t actually gained any weight and resolved to be more disciplined going forward.

With that in mind, I did a 2 1/2 hour walk along the Han river.  My pedometer claims 21,883 steps, but I think it probably runs high.  Still, I was tired and sweaty when I returned home. I think that’s about all I have in me as far as continuous walking goes.

So, I figured what the hell, let me re-weigh after the walk.  This time my scale says I’m at 239.6!  I didn’t believe it, so I weighed again, and it was still 239.6.  How the fuck did I lose over four pounds during the course of 3 hours or so?  Anyway, I’m going with the afternoon reading because it makes me feel better about myself.

During my ramble today I encountered a fellow Rambler:

That's a 1950s vintage (just like me!) Ambassador if I'm not mistaken...

That’s a 1950s vintage (just like me!) Ambassador if I’m not mistaken…California tags too, just like me (well my birth certificate anyway).

Always something new to see on the mean streets of Seoul…




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