Friday was a watershed day.  Ten months after it closed, we held a ceremony in the cafeteria to officially reopen it.  Employees turned out en masse for the opening ceremony and for complimentary food samples provided by the new vendor (people will always show up for free food!).  The Ambassador and his wife opened the ceremony with some remarks, and together we cut the cake and the ribbon to officially open the cafeteria.  The occasion marks one of my best days during my time in Korea.  While the recognition of a job well done is nice, what is most significant to me is that the cafeteria is finally a reality.  I put a lot of time and effort into reopening it.  My staff, including the general manager of the community association, also made great efforts to bring it to fruition.  During the selection process, we failed in our first attempt to bring in our first vendor candidate, setting us back by about three months.  At the same time, we worked with another group to supply the cafeteria with limited food choices as a temporary, stopgap measure, but the group ran into some trouble and had to cease operations.  So much headache has been associated with reopening the cafeteria that it brings a huge measure of relief to know that on Monday morning it will officially open for business.  Our work isn’t completely finished, because the vendor still has to perform.  There will be growing pains, I’m sure.  But at least the hard part is over.  I won’t be packing my lunch or going out for lunch as much as I did, that’s for sure.  I’m going to the cafeteria and savoring the cafeteria food.
 
I went out with a friend and some of his office mates last night.  We met for drinks and karaoke.  We had a great time.  I love to sing.  I sang a few of my best songs, including covers of Roy Orbison’s "Oh Pretty Women" and Peter Frampton’s "Ooo Baby I Love Your Way."  I think I shocked them when I sang a couple of "screecher" songs, when I shift gears vocally and start singing like a chipmunk on helium.  I can’t quite sing like Kurt Cobain, so whenever I sing Nirvana’s "Smells Like Teen Spirit" I start to screech.  They told me it was some of the worst karaoke they’d ever heard, laughing all the while.  Good!  I love to have fun while singing.  It’s a lot of fun to deviate from the standard karaoke vocals.  Most karaoke singers try to sound just like the artist.  Those who sing well may deviate from the original artist’s form, but they usually try to imitate the style of the artist.  As an American, I must prefer going my own way.
 
We had so much fun that I came home much too late.  Tired or not, I had to get up at about 6:30 a.m. to take care of my son.  He knew that his mom had to work all day in Busan today and wouldn’t be home until after he went to bed.  Thus, his internal alarm clock told him to wake up even earlier so he could see mommy before she left for work.  I took him for the rest of the day.  We had a wonderful time together.  We built a pillow fort with our sofa cushions, read stories, played with trains and with Play-doh.  His green Play-doh was missing, and his mom confirmed that she had thrown it away after it grew too brittle.  He was devastated.  He just had to have blue AND green Play-doh, as I mentioned in a recent blog entry.  So daddy and he went to the toy store looking for green Play-doh and for AAA batteries for a storybook.  The only Play-doh I could find was one can of "Spiderman Fun Dough."  Thinking that it must be blue or red, I went ahead and bought it.  It turns out the Play-doh was just the green we needed!  My son was very happy.  I also put together his storybook, and we listened to stories.  In the evening, we went to dinner together.  When mommy came home, she bathed and put my son to bed.  The rest of the day was ours.  It was a wonderful father-son experience.
 
Blog NotesWade3016, well yes, Vince Young will probably opt to join the NFL draft.  So far all the attention has been on Reggie Bush, and most armchair quarterbacks assume that the 2-14 Houston Texans will draft Bush (a Bush head to Houston…imagine that).  So if the Texans take Bush in the first round, then I guess the 3-13 New Orleans/San Antonio Saints will take Young second in the draft?  That would make sense.  If I were the Texans though, I’d take another look at Young.  The NFL is full of stars who were taken later in the draft and ended up outshining the first round draft pick.
 

Books by MG EdwardsMG Edwards is a writer of books and stories in the thriller and science fiction-fantasy genres. He also writes travel adventures and children’s books. A former U.S. diplomat, he served in South Korea, Paraguay, and Zambia before leaving the Foreign Service to write full time.

Edwards is author of six books. His memoir, Kilimanjaro: One Man’s Quest to Go Over the Hill, was finalist for the Book of the Year Award and the Global eBook Award. He has published four children’s picture books in the World Adventurers for Kids Series: Alexander the Salamander; Ellie the Elephant; Zoe the Zebra; and a collection featuring all three stories. His book Real Dreams: Thirty Years of Short Stories is an anthology of 15 short stories.

Edwards lives in Taipei, Taiwan with his wife Jing and son Alex. He has also lived in Austria, Singapore and Thailand. For more books or stories by M.G. Edwards, visit his web site at www.mgedwards.com or contact him by e-mail at me@mgedwards.com or on Twitter @m_g_edwards.

© 2017 Brilliance Press. All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted without the written consent of the author.

1 Comment

  1. Bob's Gravatar Bob
    January 9, 2006    

    Let me add to your remarks: Specifically, your version of Nirvana’s "Teen Spirit" sounded, from begining to end, like it was being sung by "Cartman" from the cartoon South Park. I haven’t laughed that hard in a while. My office mates agree.

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