Oct 8, 2012

Gettin' Naked Part 2: Significantly Less Naked

For the first part of this tale, see Gettin' Naked: Part 1.

Let's resume our harrowing tale of nudity and friendship. Last we left our heroines, they were recovering from a verryyy close encounter with a nearly-nude old lady who scrubbed all the dead skin off their bodies.

Ok. We soaked in pools of various temperatures and flavors (like ginseng) until we felt like mandu that had been left in the boiler for too long. Overcooked dumplings. That's what we were.

The ladies and I oozed back to the locker room and poured ourselves  into our standard-issue jammies.  What followed was an exensive lolling-about on the cozy, heated floor of the jjimjilbang common area, complete with small, brick-like pillows and the traditional snacks of smoked eggs and sikhe, a sweet, refreshing rice-water drink.

The next hour or so can be summed up in these snippets from our conversation:
(must be read in the croaky, slurred voice of someone who just spent far too much time in very hot pools of water.)

"I think you stole my pillow."
"Here, have it back."
"No, it's ok. I already lost my head indent."

"The floor here is just...comfier.
"Comfier than what?
"...other floors."

"I wish this straw were longer. I can’t lie down and drink at the same time."

"Two of us have the same colored straw, and now I don’t know which sikhe is mine."

"My sikhe has too much rice in it."

"Guys. There's an ice room. It has a snow man."
"You're on your own, sister. 
I'll stay here and save this patch of floor for you because I love you."

" The sauna is too hot... the ice room is too cold."

"Guysssss, someone stole my patch of floor."

"Remember: Shower sauna warm bath medicine bath shower repeat."

"Guys. An ajumma in a lace bikini told me I have dry skin. Then she scrubbed it all off.

"That was the only action I've gotten in Korea...and I think it was better for me than it was for her."

That lasted for about 2 hours, before we finally caved and decided it was sleep times for real.  The great thing about jjimjilbangs like this one is that they're open 24 hours a day, and have built in sleeping rooms. And by sleeping rooms, I mean quiet, dark, temperature-controlled rooms with floor mats and more brick-ish pillows. And by temperature-controlled, I mean not really. Same with quiet... and dark. But the sleeping mats and pillows were there.

Here's a picture. The first three sets of legs belong to the ladies.

We slept here for about 7 hours, then headed home around 9 the next morning.

One final note: The cost for all of this? About $40. Here's the breakdown:
$12-- Entry fee for 12 hours
$25-- Scrubdown
$2-- Sikhe
$2-- smoked egg

Ok, fine, $41. I have degrees in Linguistics and Journalism. Mama doesn't do math.

And that, my friends, wraps up my jjimjilbang saga. I'm sorry this entry wasn't as cleverly written as the previous one. All my writing mojo went to lesson planning today.

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