Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Making a List, Checking it Twice

On my weekends I tend to do a lot of work. This particular weekend I had offered my considerable talents for a speaking engagement on reading and writing. I figured why not and even though it would be a three hour trip to engage a very small group of teachers I felt it would be worth the effort. I made arrangements for a road trip and otherwise tried to enjoy my pleasantly light on work week.

Now here is the thing. Knowing this trip was three hours away one would think that it would be important to take certain things. Things like say my blouse and pants, my computer, my varying products, you know the stuff you need when you are doing the professional thing on  a weekend.  But somehow my day got rushed. I felt like I was out of it, it started to rain while I was walking home so I took off my clothes before packing and started to put things together. Among the clothing articles that had been removed was the pants that I was planning on wearing to the presentation the next day. Not a big deal, I knew where the pants where and placed them on top of my back pack so I could remember to bring them with.

After packing up a car, a dog, a driver, a backpack, and mp3 player, and other sundries, it was into the car and onto the road. The drive was mostly uneventful with some humor from David Sedaris to keep everyone awake. Even the dog was amused.

Eventually I ended up at the city in the middle of no where. It was nine in the evening I would need to sleep so I fired up a bottle of wine, the t.v. and found some dinner. All was going well and I was getting a little tipsy. I recounted to the Driver, "You know, I didn't get my pants out of the car."

"You want the keys."


So, a little tipsy I held the key. I stared at the key. I was daunted by the key. I starting laughing, a little half hearted giggle pre-hysteria laugh.

"What's funny?" asked the Driver.

"I was just thinking how funny it would be if I forgot to pack my pants."

"You did pack your pants, right?"

"Yeah, they were on top of my bag. I didn't put them in my bag, but I remember they are next to the dog case." So, after finishing my glass and close to midnight I wandered down to the car to find the pants. Only, I did not find the pants. I checked the front seat. No pants. I checked the back seat. No pants. I looked under seats. I ruffled through things. No pants.

Huh, I thought. I'm just missing them. I'll have the Driver come look.

So I walk back up to the room and open the door.

"Where are your pants," asks the Driver.

"Good question. I couldn't find them, but I know I packed them. You go look, it's your car." And I tossed the keys at the Driver. You must understand that among other things the car currently had a unicycle and an inflatable kayak stuffed in it so it was not impossible that I was just missing the pants. However after being gone long enough for me to finish a good half of my bottle of wine the Driver returned sans pants.

"Well fuck."

And now is when the fun begins. Because I live in South Korea and I'm not a size two. So after discovering that I have left my pants at home I have to figure out how to get a pair of workable black pants for a presentation and I will not have a whole lot of time to do it.

There is this odd thing about Korea. It's not that there are not fat Koreans, there are. There are Koreans who are a hell of a lot bigger than I am. The question here is "Where do these people shop?" I know from experience and I know from friends that a size 0-1 anywhere else in the world is an extra large in Korea. In the States I would have driven to any local Wal-mart and found what I needed in a regular section with no questions asked. In Korea I hadn't the foggiest idea.

The next morning after very little sleep (freaking night club district hotels) it was decided to try the Korean equivalent of a Walmart and hope for the best that they have a pair of pants in the size I was looking for. I had a rough idea of what I needed. The question was whether or not it could be found.

There is nothing more exciting then shopping for clothes in Korea. As soon as you start to look at clothes the retailers freak out. "Chingu?" For your friend? "Andi, na-peer-i-o-hada" No, I need these..."No, andiyo, andi," You, no, no no, get the heck out, no! The Jamacian once had a retailer refuse to sell her an eighty dollar dress because the retailer was convinced it would look bad on her. Not becuase it wouldn't fit but if she were the dress it might imply the store had things for regular sized women and that would be the deat of the store.

Knowing all this I went shopping anyway. Or rather, I poked and prodded the Driver who went shopping while I peered over a shoulder and tried to determine if the pants in question might fit me. Within twenty minutes we had managed to convince some nice sales lady to seach through the racks for the size that was required and oddly enough managed to find two workable contenders and a pair of sweat pants.

I hate sweat pants but bought the evil vile things as a last resort. Sixty bucks lighter I went into the bathroom, whispered a short prayer to the goddess, and started to wiggly my curvy ass into some pants. And to my surprise and amazement the first pair not only fit, but actually made my curey ass look FANTASTIC.

Somewhat relieved I tossed my paint spattered travel pants into the shopping bag and didint' even bother with the other pairs. I figured why tempt fate.

All things aside I looked professional, the workshop went well, and know one even suspected what an idiot I am.


GeologyJoe said...

must have been quite a relief that it worked out. i love when that happens.

karmologyclinic said...

I really enjoyed your post. I tend to forget important things too.
You know, in Greece there is the same problem with sizes. Usually the XL is like a US Medium size. Which is weird, because Greek women are notorious for not having skinny asses. The result is that the normal sizes are the first to finish from the shops and then there are those tiny XS and Small sizes.