Three Meals a Day in Gochang Ep 6:
Fighting heat with heat doesn’t work for SeungWon and he just asks for time to rest. It’s a sweltering 34 degrees Celsius out there and HoJun jokingly requests that they buy an air conditioner with their earnings. Ha. He reminisces the times when he was younger without aircon – he and his brother would just dip their feet in a bowl of ice that their mom would prepare. Nowadays, we just say, “turn on the air con!”
SeungWon gets it in his head to play some table tennis and ever the carpenter, HaeJin improvises their outdoor platform into a table tennis table. Add the table tennis net they have in the house and it’s done. They separate into their respective “departments” and it’s HaeJin and JooHyuk who score first. Ooh, they’re pretty good at this and all of a sudden, HoJun throws his paddle down and grumps that he won’t play when the teams have some kind of discourse, hahahah. SeungWon shares that his last game with HaeJin ten years ago probably left some kind of trauma on them since he threw out a mandarin back them instead of a ping pong ball.
The game continues and HaeJin tutors JooHyuk on playing better but SeungWon and HoJun win, through a series of lucky balls. JooHyuk even springs the ajae-gags on them mid-play, ha. They continue the games and a particularly interesting relay lasts pretty long. Pfft, no one wants to admit defeat and they decide on 6, not, 11 sets! Hahaha.
The table-tennis table soon becomes part of their lives and a flash-forward shows them playing the game even at 1.00 am. Whenever there is free time, it’s always table tennis! They even make the table tennis set a permanent fixture on their platform.
At one time, HoJun focuses on the game so much that he ignores his teammate’s high-five.
But for now, they’re done and to stave the heat away, HaeJin starts spraying water all over everything: the furnace, the roof and even the boys (and HoJun’s butt, heh).
JooHyuk sprays water on HaeJin too, though SeungWon only wants water on his legs. And after that, JooHyuk naturally drifts off into a nap.
Out in the field, the ducks are also done eating all the little weeds and bugs from the rice plantation and the elder three guys go to collect them while JooHyuk washes the dishes. Aw! SO CUTE! The little ducklings follow SeungWon too when they see him take their siblings away. Pfft, but then they waddle all the way back into the water before they can be put into their caravan.
Now that the ducklings have grown so big, it’s been becoming increasingly difficult to just transfer them into their caravan by hand. Therefore, HaeJin builds a door and ramp for their caravan, so that they can enter it themselves. And he completes the job in no time at all. So cool. JooHyuk even says that he’s never imagined anything like it and call is an “orivan” (duck-van). Gone are the days when they have to chase after those rebellious teenagers. Pffft. Now they just chase them in using brooms.
After that, HaeJin hops on his motorbike for a trip around. Pwahaha, SeungWon comes out to say bye to him all while wearing a white sheet mask. He peeks into the youngster’s rooms like that too and offers them some too. HoJun puts the mask on and together, he and SeungWon sit outside like that, with HoJun commenting that the Food Department is pretty nice.
It’s time to make dinner and they take their two chickens out. Pwahaha, JooHyuk takes issue with them preparing the dish right in front of their live chickens so they move the whole thing elsewhere.
The ducklings are let out of ther caravan…and suddenly SeungWon is very interested in their rather big muscles. HAHAHA. It might seem like he hasn’t given up on his dream of making Beijing roast duck but when they come over, he’s all coos and smiles for them.
They drive the ducks back to their caravan, with some difficulty because those ducks just won’t move. SeungWon starts to prepare the chicken… and then gets distracted by yet another game of table tennis. Heh, it’s dark outside by the time they really get to making dinner, Gom-tang.
And then there’s a break in which there’s nothing to do again and so it’s table tennis again. Once the water boils, SeungWon calls for a break in their game and runs to throw the chicken in. He hurries though adding all the ingredients… and then HaeJin rushes JooHyuk for more firewood. Pfft… did you come here to play table tennis or cook? And they do that, alternating between playing table tennis, cooking, playing again, and cooking and so on, haha.
But once the chicken is cooked, no one has table tennis on their minds anymore. It’s all filled by the chicken that SeungWon now shreds. SeungWon has something more surprising for them up his sleeves and he adds chilli pepper, minced garlic and spring onions among other things to the shredded chicken, something that’s not normal for the dish. Still, in his interview, HaeJin notes that it was really delicious.
Their chicken soup boils and that’s their cue to scoop it out and serve it in bowls.
To those clear bowls of steaming hot chicken broth, SeungWon add his marinated chicken meat. Ha! HaeJin rejects having his table tennis platform possibly dirtied by food and insists that they all eat inside. Pfft, that’s the start of the platform losing its original purpose.
Add some ripe Kimchi and purplish rice and the perfect dinner is prepared, once again. They thoroughly enjoy it. Since there’s no oil added and the chicken skin was all removed, it makes for a very light and refreshing broth – something that JooHyuk can’t get enough of, haha, and he believes that with the strength it gives him, he can play another 5 rounds of table tennis.
On the other hand, HoJun sighs that table tennis is really hard.
They clean up, but leave the washing to JooHyuk, who SeungWon walks into half-naked right then, heh. Once done washing up, JooHyuk rests next to HoJun and sighs that yet another has gone by… well for him but not for the adults out there who are still playing table tennis at 1 am.
Night passes and day breaks as always. SeungWon is the first to wake, followed by HoJun. Ha, JooHyuk has a mini-heart-attack to find HoJun gone.
The job that they’ll be doing today will earn them $80 bucks. LOL, HaeJin cleans his teeth like he’s gonna clean his liver too, what with the violent way he’s doing it.
As agreed upon the previous day, they all pile into the truck, off to work. They put on some music, to which JooHyuk adds some comments along to the beat, like a DJ. They stop at a store to grab a quick breakfast and then play along a zebra-crossing, like they’re The Beatles.
They ride on to the sweet potato farm and just seeing the sheer scale of the farm sends shivers down their spine. Even before he’s started anything, SeungWon is already complaining of back pain… and then he goes on to put the wearable seat on wrongly.
Ha, since the first thing that they have to do is hack all the leaves in a 200m, that wearable seat sticking out of their butt just look very ridiculous, so they take it off. Just doing that is no joke and soon they’re just sitting around taking a break, ha!
But it’s back to work for them and the farmer shows them how to harvest those sweet potatoes out. HaeJin even has a bite of one of them.
Slowly but surely, they make their way through the rows, with HaeJin the handy man showing them just how to do it right. Pffft, SeungWon mutters that he must have lived here before, purposely keeping his voice so low that HaeJin can’t hear anything.
And while HaeJin zooms along, JooHyuk is taking his own sweet time, being careful not to harm the roots. They really just spend their morning doing that, digging those sweet potatoes up, transporting them to the trucks and then digging them back up again.
HaeJin jokes for them to just go back and eat more Bbudajjigae and SeungWon warns the young kids not to laugh. Then he bursts into laughter himself.
They take a short break in which HaeJin and SeungWon compete in yodelling and then it’s back to the fields for them. Pfft, they joke while they work and that makes the hard work all the more tolerable. HAHA, they carry the sweet potatoes back together, a box to 2 guys and since his other hand is free, SeungWon asks to hold HoJun’s hand.
Work soon ends and immediately, SeungWon demands their pay – $100, since they worked longer than expected.
They head off to the stores downtown to get ingredients for dinner. Now that they have money, the adults urge the kids to buy some ice cream and snacks and they buy as much as $15.80 worth.
Back at the house, the ducks make a fuss and even though he’s till on the way, SeungWon knows that they must be hungry and thirsty. So the moment they step home, they rush to prepare their food and water and let them out of their caravan.
Now that the ducks are fed, they have to feed themselves too. Heh, even though the menu is just a simple ramen, having to light the drum-furnace means that they have to bend over again, something that they’d been doing for hours. They even cook 5 packets for all 4 of them.
HaeJin smiles as he puts the money away. He’s so happy that he puts on some music and fashions a speaker using a short elbow pipe. Ha, HaeJin and JooHyuk take those ramyeon out of their packs and JooHyuk copies HaeJin in eating those little crumbs of ramyeon at the bottom of the packet raw.
And because Ramyeon is never done without Kimchi, they chop some up to go with it.
Soon, piping hot, steaming bowls of salty sourish kimchi ramyeon is done! OMG, they even have a bowl of rice to go with it.
As expected, it suits JooHyuk’s taste buds perfectly well. SeungWon adds rice to his ramyeon, which is something I don’t think I’ll ever get.
It’s getting way too hot, so hot that there’s a public service announcement telling the elderly to stay in. Therefore, they head off to a nearby hill in their trusty truck. HA, JooHyuk reads “wild vegetable bibimbap” off a menu and then follows that up with “dead vegetable bibimbap”. Then he and SeungWon sleep.
Pwahaha, HaeJin sees that and bursts into a song… which SeungWon ignores. Then he suddenly bursts into a song as reply himself.
In no time, they’re at the cool hill and at a stream, enjoying the cool water and the foliage. They put on relaxing music and while JooHyuk enters the stream, SeungWon lies on his side and reads a book, just like HaeJin.
Pfft, JooHyuk really just plays in the water like a kid, chasing after fish and scooping up shells. HoJun puts his feet in the water and gets a shock to feel fish bite his legs. Heh, JooHyuk pokes around in the water and almost falls in it.
He notes that the stream is a little deep and then goes in. HoJun throws a little ball in there, asking him to fetch it and JooHyuk hesitates to go in further because it’s deep. Pwahahaha, he fakes it so many times that SeungWon knows that he’s talking nonsense, so…
“Aren’t you getting up? You’ll get scolded.”
And he stands tall, more than half of his body out of the water, heh.
HoJun gives it a try too and heh, it’s chest deep for him. SeungWon refuses to believe it and goes in himself, threatening that they’re dead if they’re faking. Nope, a part of the little pool really is deep.
The afternoon passes by like that, with the adults sleeping under the foliage while the younger ones frolic in the water.
They head home soon, grabbing some snack on the way. Ha, they’d apparently let the ducks out to feed in the fields and HaeJin is annoyed not to see them back home, since his logic is that since they’re older now, they should be coming home themselves. Nope! Haha.
He changes the hay for them before going off to collect them.
Haaa, instead of chasing after them now, HaeJin lures them into their orivan with a bowl of food. He’s successful with half of them, so he locks them in… and then goes off to get the others. Heh, nothing is unsolvable with food.
They reach home and HaeJin remarks that he really doesn’t want to do anything, all while perspiring non-stop. Heh, he finds their metal pot covered in rust and tells JooHyuk to clean it. He finds some on the lid too and JooHyuk, even while complaining, pulls another pun (“rust” and “no joke” sound the same), making HaeJin burst out into laughter.
They make rice, with the cleaned pot and this time, HaeJin the one playing, rubbing soot onto JooHyuk’s face under the pretence of wiping perspiration away.
The sun sets and they in that time, the rice gets cooked. Now that that’s done, it’s time for the food department to take over and prepare their main dish – stir fried pork with kimchi. Of course with Chajumma at the head, it’s goes swimmingly well. He heats up the pan, and with HoJun’s help in putting in the pork, the kimchi, some salt and finally some sesame seeds, it’s done.
Winter comes along to chase away the summer heat!
Comment! Comment, comment, and comment! 😀