October 30, 2011

so... wanna pick some apples?

a simple idea that sprouted anxiety, bore fruits of confusion. It all culminated in the tale: So, you wanna pick some apples?

It starts on a Monday, the loneliest of days, with a group kakao message (kinda like texting). The text was simple, so... do you want to pick some apples? While I didn't answer the question with a simple answer. I much rather beating around the bush on questions than actually answer them, it's a personality trait. I had every intention of answering yes that very day, it wasn't until the push became Wednesday that I committed.

The simple plan however was fraught with subtext. You see comrades, my friend who sent the text was not the person actually planning the trip (nor is it the person pictured above). She left the planning in the hands of her employer; a villain so veraciously vile and villainous that she appears to the naked eye like to be a nice old lady (screams in the background). In the days post-commitment I was exposed to elevating levels of cognitive dissonance. First came the demand for my Alien Card number, and for those unaware it's basically my SIN number, and not something lustfully thrown around.

This action left my friends and I to question the validity of the tour. We heard rumblings about not actually being able to keep the apples that we selected. Our thoughts grew into worries about our purpose, and what exactly was about to occur. A seemingly innocent joke about migrant labour quickly took root. It doesn't take much to realize that I am in fact a migrant worker. It was an oh fuck moment I assure you. Other comparisons arose in the fact that this 'adventure/day labour' started at 7:30am.

With expectations of riding in the back of a pickup truck, I dressed warmly. In fact I did my (totally unplanned) best to capture the essence of my assumed role. I didn't shave, wear deodorant or worry about my greasy hair. I wore layers that could slide off in case of physical exertion. What I didn't do was check the weather (which called for rain, all day), and dressed entirely in absorbent material.

What transpired was so unexpected, that all I could fathom doing was aimlessly wander around (which I sort of got into trouble for doing). We had been signed up for the worst bus tour imaginable. At the ass crack of dawn we piled onto a bus, and were held captive for the next 12 hours. We weren't told anything really, the tour was conducted in Korean. I started to feel like I was on a Korean reality show as my fellow travelers applauded gleefully from the opening moments of the trip. I would like to say more about the trip, but I will offer it to you pictorially. I'd like to see if you can figure it out, remember I signed up to go apple picking.

3 hours in, an oriental medicine museum. (no apples, but!)


5 hours in,  a traditional Korean folk village. (Beautiful trees, but no apples upon them)

8 hours in, a national park. (more beauty, including Mulack, and more trees! but still no apples)

10 hours in, APPLES!
(we had 20 minutes select them, had to pay extra, and we spent 21 minutes being choosy. Which held up the tour) 


12 hours in, and not pictured, the bus driver grinded the front end off a Toyota Rav4. He took a turn too tight, and the front end of the car fell victim the days randomly strung together events.

Overall, it didn't seem like a tour, it seemed like a series of pit stops. There didn't really seem to be a theme to the day. It was like, hey, there is a museum in that direction, a folk village over there, why not go to that park over yonder and finally, let's stop on the side of a highway (literally, we did) and let people pick apples while the bus drivers take a smoke break.

While the outcome of the day was expected, I did walk away with 6 apples. The price I paid for those apples was astronomical. In the end each apple cost $4 and took 2 hours each to pick. Not a great return either financially or time wise, but proof of a veraciously vile and villainous... villain that lurks inside all nice old ladies (even though she was super nice and bought us lunch).

1 comment: