Sunday, August 01, 2010

Changbaishan Hot Springs: The Boys

You already know what happened to Mom and Julie when they walked behind the nv door. Now here is what took place when Dad and I entered the nan hot springs room...

Luckily, there were no other people in the water when we went in. The room had rows of showers and three pools...one extremely hot, one the normal heat for hot springs, and one extremely cold. We both went for the medium, which was about forty degrees Celsius.

It was...awesome!

Several minutes later, we were joined by a group of about ten Korean men, who stripped down into their "birthday suits" and hopped in.

Having nothing to do with the rest of the post, I had a goal to stay in the extremely cold pool for several minutes. I succeeded a little while after the others came in. A young boy, probably about ten years old, saw me and decided to do what I was doing. He touched the water and ran away.

While we were bathing, a worker came in and told us to take off our suits. We simply said, "No, we don't want to." The man was very persistent and kept at it.

Dad then said to the man in Chinese, "That's weird. I'm not taking my clothes off."

The man continued to pester us, so Dad said, "Tell them over there to put some clothes on." That, in my opinion, was the best part of the night.

Then, one of the men stood up out of the pool, pointed directly at his private parts, and said in marbled English, "Like dis!"

The rest of our time in the tubs was spent with them trying English phrases on us and us responded in Mandarin. One very courageous man went into the forty-nine degree Celsius pool and shouted, "Number one!" I shouted back, "Zhen lihai!" (This means "awesome" or "fierce.")

Once we were done bathing, we went to change, but the worker got mad at us for getting water on the floor. Dad managed to get by the man and out of the door, but I was forced to wait until he stopped paying attention. This time, unfortunately, never came. I managed to convince him that my bathing suit was dry. I tehn basically grabbed my stuff and ran.

All I can say is that the bath was not at all like Berkeley Springs or Xi'an!

~Z

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