Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas in Korea 2013 Pt.1

'Well, I've celebrated christmas in untraditional and unusual ways. I've worked on Christmas day and still had the best Christmases...until this one.

I woke up this morning to a gloomy and cold day (although thankful I had a heater). I didn't have lots of time so I got right into the shower and put the shampoo in my hair and the water went frigid. I clipped my soapy hair up, wrapped it in a towel and went to try to do the only thing I knew to do, heat the oil tank for more hot water. I turned it on and 45 minutes later realized I was heating the floor and not the water. Doh. So I switched the buttons to the other option and waited half an hour until there was 15 minutes left before I needed to leave for work. (Yes, I'm working this Christmas too).  When the water wasn't any hotter I pulled out the only two pots I have, filled them full of water and set them on my two burner stove to boil so I could at least rinse the shampoo out of my hair. Well, turns out the gas is out too. One burner started to light and then fizzled out into nothing. Sigh, this morning isn't going so well. There was nothing to do but stick my head under a freezing cold stream of water in the sink, wrap it in a scarf and walk out the door into the cold gloomy weather. 

Not feeling clean, warm, sexy, or pretty for that matter, I arrived at work with five minutes to get dressed and do all my stage makeup and prep for the Christmas show directly following. Arg. I'm lucky I've had lots of practice so I can move quickly through the routine.  My hair still wet and now super frizzy, I put in my Christmas bows and headed up to the stage for the first show of the day. 

I thought the show was going well considering I hadn't had a chance to warm up or even sit down and think for a second. But halfway through the show a hair on my bow broke. Normally this is no big deal. You break it off at the ends and just keep going. I can't do that though because if I drop a violin bow hair on the aquarium stage it will wash down into the water and the dolphins will eat it and die, or at least that's the premise.  So I played the rest of the show with this hair twisting and tying itself into knots with the other hairs on my bow. 

After that show it was a quick dress change and scurry upstairs to the lobby for the Christmas show. I play Jingle Bells and O Holy Night at the very end of the program. Since all the equipment for my electric violin is tied up in the other show arena and while we're upstairs performing a Christmas show the animal show is going on so the sound techs are still working there, I have to perform on a cheap acoustic. I'm not playing on my instrument because there is no one to drive me to and from work everyday when it's snowing and raining outside and I'm not willing to walk outside 20 minutes to work and back with my really expensive violin. So my boss has the really cheap one that when I opened it and tried to tune it for the first time the D string broke. I replaced it with a spare of mine and tried again the next day. The next day the E string broke. I replaced that string too. It takes nearly five minutes to tune the violin every show and it doesn't even stay in tune for one entire piece. 

Today I waited for Santa Claus and the dancing Santa clad girls to finish and then walked out with my sprightly version of Jingle Bells. Of course, with Santa Claus and the pretty girls there, people pay me no mind. In fact, people have nearly walked into me numerous times and walk in front of me while I'm crossing the lobby "stage" all the time. I stand next the the girls in front of the Christmas tree and there is a crowd of people taking pictures with Santa and the girls. I'm still playing... Then when Santa is out of gifts for the children and all the pictures have been taken with the girls, everyone leaves. I'm still playing... I finish playing to an empty lobby with no one to watch and listen (outside of Santa and the girls). Do I really sound that bad? Maybe, it's possible, but I doubt it. I'm even dressed in a sparkly and sexy blue dress and I have my eyes open and am ready to interact with anyone that comes by. Today this scenario played out yet again; an out of tune violin, and an uninterested public.

^~^~Check out my Christmas vlog, Christmas in Korea 2013 Pt.2 for one of the tunes.

But I made Christmas no bake cookies (since I don't have an oven). The nutella ones came out way too sweet, but the peanut butter and chocolate ones are great. I've distributed them around to everyone here trying to share some Christmas joy and hoping to gain some in return. 

I am happy to hear that tomorrow I get a day off. It wasn't expected so it's a nice surprise. I will spend the day visiting the doctor, baking more cookies for the girls, working out, cleaning my apartment and maybe making a few phone calls. So there won't be a touristy blog entry this week, but I will have some things to say regardless (I can see the smirks from here!).

The cookies all disappeared...thankfully, because that means I won't have to eat them all myself. After recording the video for the second blog post (vlog), I came home with a friend and had a good Insanity workout, a nice warm shower (finally I feel clean), and am nibbling on popcorn and drinking tea while finishing this blog.

I can't say it was a very Merry Christmas but it could have certainly been a lot worse and for that reason, I am thankful this holiday  :)