Thursday, September 17, 2009


I had no classes today, due to it being national exam practice day, so I putzed around on the computer for a little while, then headed to Yeongdeungpo to shop for toys for my upcoming Toy Convention lesson plan, at Mr Lee's suggestion.

Why Yeongdeungpo? He told me a new giant Shinsegae department store opened there yesterday, with a "super" E-Mart, to boot. The grand open sale would surely mean huge selection and dramatically slashed prices! Well, no. Prices were pretty much the same as at my local E-Mart, though the new shopping center--I didn't take my camera--was huge and shiny.

There was also an On the Border Mexican restaurant. Alas, I was not impressed. I got the "make your own combo" for W18,600 and chose a crispy beef taco, beef enchilada and chicken flauta, with frijoles and Mexican rice. No burrito, chimichanga, toastaguac or fajita options in the combo.

The nacho cheese was good, the refried beans okay, but everything else was overcooked, dry and salty. The taco meat was completely bland. They gave me some coupons for next time, but there is no next time.

So, I made my meager purchases and took the subway for home. This involves a transfer from line 1 to line 9 at Noryangjin. To make this transfer, you actually leave the line 1 station house and walk half a block to the line 9 Noryangjin station. Along the way, I copped a smoke.

Big mistake: I extinguished my butt underfoot and stepped toward the escalator. Just then, some old dude with a baseball cap and matching vest snagged me by the arm and pulled me away. He pointed at, then picked up, the butt and started chattering at me.

Long story short, I was delivered a citation for what I suppose is littering, even though I can't swear the butt he picked from the several on the sidewalk was actually mine. Of course, there was no trash receptacle in sight.

To fill out the paperwork, he called over what I suppose was his supervisor, who spoke marginally better Englsh than him (or almost none at all); the upshot is I have to pay a fine of W15,000 (USD 12) in the next ten days. That'll larn me! Mainly, to check around that there are no old dudes with matching cap and vest outfits nearby before flipping a filter.


SuperDrew said...

Ahhh, poor smokers. Hahaha. Actually, this never happened to me back in my darker days, but I have heard enough stories about it to assume that it isn't uncommon.

I imagine that the walk between subway stations sees a lot of people smoking, so they probably sit out there a lot.

SuperDrew said...

Sorry to double comment, but I was curious about the On the Border place, so looked it up on Google. That make your own combo deal that you paid nearly 19,000w for is a whopping 6.99$ in the US. Talk about a markup!

The Sanity Inspector said...

I was waiting for a bus, swilling a soft drink from a hot dog joint. I poured the last ice cube--the last one!--into the gutter. The ajumma sitting at her veggie stall next to me couldn't have been more startled if I had tossed a molotov cocktail.

Tuttle said...

SD: 1) there were other smokers; Mr Hwang tells me that the dong admin office is nearby, so that may explain the "community volunteer" presence. 2) In my experience, even at 6.99, it isn't worth it.
TSI: But... but... the gutter is *for* water, that's what it's for.

Rod said...

That reminds me of the time a shopper asked you put out your cigarette in a grocery store in Asheville, N.C. On the Williamsburg interim trip. You just dropped it on the floor and stomped it.

Tuttle said...

What were we doing in a grocery store in Ashville, NC? I don't remember the incident but I'll defer to your steel-trap memory!

Tanner Brown said...

I remember that time in Piggly Wiggly in Newnan when that old woman asked you politely to put out the three cigarettes you were smoking.

You dropped one and crushed it beneath your New Balance, and took the second one and mashed it into the poor lady's cheek. The third one, well, you kept smoking that one.