About every six months I start getting an itch – an itch that can only be scratched with expensive airline tickets and a destination at least 14 hours away from Los Angeles via 747.
It’s a pricy addiction. But I’ve never regretted a single penny I’ve spent going to Asia.
Why Asia? I’m not sure. It might be the BA in Asian Studies. Or my first real romance – which started during a night of debauchery in Shanghai, China, and ended two and a half tumultuous years later when I rediscovered my spine on a trip to Korea. Or maybe it was the two months I spent being dirty and sweaty as hell, traversing East Asia and contracting tuberculosis.
I think everyone has a part of the world they adore. (Mine’s pretty obvious. Check my passport – China, Korea, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar…and, randomly, Costa Rica – which was completely amazing, but didn’t give me quite the same high.)
So now, here I am again, negotiating with my boss for time off to travel to Korea. “The Motherland” – a joke between the students I attended the Korean Studies Workshop at Korea University with. So yeah baby, Britt’s going back to the Motherland – with a surprising travel companion!
If you know The Boyfriend, you know that he doesn’t leave Southern California unless you threaten his life. And even then, it’s more likely you’d just have to kill him. Just last week, he was giving me some speech about how his home was his “empire” and he would rather rule his empire than go anywhere, because he has plenty of fun at home. Even funnier is his perception of travel – I was worried about being late for a flight to Sacramento, and he responded with, “Don’t worry, you can just catch the next one.” Umm, wow. That is SO NOT HOW IT WORKS.
Which is why I didn’t even bother to invite him on my Korea expedition.
But yesterday, The Boyfriend starts asking me about my trip. And so I fill him in on the dates and details – and then he asks, “Will you miss me?” which I respond to with my usual lack of tack: “Well, yeah, but I’ve got to get used to that sort of thing, since you’re never going to go anywhere!”
I mean, I bug him all the time about taking a trip. Like, homeboy, we’ve been together for two years now – are we ever going to go somewhere?!! to which he always responds, yeah, sure…someday, meaning hell no, crazy bitch, I’m staying right here! I’d pretty much decided that for the remainder of our relationship, I was going to travel the world as I saw fit, while he sat at home. I mean, I’d bring him postcards. And give him a bad time. But I’d know he was content ruling his empire and I was having a fan-fucking-tastic time despite his unwillingness to experience the world with me.
Then, he says, “What if I went?”
Okay, cut me some slack people. I can’t even convince this boy to go to Las Vegas for the weekend. I started laughing. “Well, that’s cute,” I said. “No really,” he says back. “Well, that would be awesome, but it’s not happening.”
At this point, it is dawning on him that I am not taking him seriously. AT ALL.
“No, really Brittany! I want to go!”
You guys, it’s the fucking apocalypse. I would have bet that anything would have happened before The Boyfriend left the continent. Flying pigs, the complete domestication of zebras, the emergence of Liechtenstein as a world power – ANYTHING.
Which is why I still didn’t believe him.
“Really? Because we’re buying the tickets tomorrow.”
“Okay. Let’s do it.”
OHMAGAWD – what did I miss? Has he contracted a terminal illness? And he sees this as his last chance to experience the world? Did he fall down and hit his head and knock something loose? Should I take him to a hospital for CAT scans?
I’m trying to accept it, but I’m still in denial.
But don’t think for second he’s made a complete turn around. I wondered aloud how he’d do on the flight, to which he responded, “Oh damn! I forgot about that part!”
OH. NOOOOOOES. The Boyfriend thought we were going to teleport to Korea! I’m going to have to drug him! Not to mention, I have no idea how I’m ever going to get him to the airport on time! (For those of you not familiar with The Boyfriend, he cannot be on time to ANYTHING. He is late to his own parties and he can’t seem to eat lunch before 3 in the afternoon.)
This could be an unprecedented travel disaster.
This could also be THE MOST AMAZING TRIP OF ALL TIME. Mostly because I am going to be witness to THE MOST EXTREME CASE OF CULTURE SHOCK OF ALL TIME.
(Just to be clear, The Boyfriend has been out of the United States. He’s been to Mexico – which basically doesn’t count because it’s next to California, and he’s been to Italy. Well, as he describes it, he was “forced” to go to Italy. But had a “good time” once he got there. What kind of crazy person doesn’t want to go to Italy?! Oh. Yeah. I forgot who I was dating for a second.)
But, basically, I still don’t understand what just happened.
He told me he “owed me a trip.” First of all, nobody owes anybody a two week long trip to Asia. Secondly, umm, he’s never agreed to owing me anything. Anything. I am soooo confused.
But I am also extremely excited!! GAH!!!*
Oh god, is he going to survive this?
What if he loses his passport?
Or gets lost?
No, no…it’s going to be fantastic. It is. I swear.
We’re going to Korea!!!!
*But, please, let me know if you have any information about the impending apocalypse and/or the state of The Boyfriend’s brain. It is important that I be notified.