We're sitting at an open air cafe in Seoul. The air is humid, but the breeze is cool. The crowd in the street is incredible. Tourists jostle around booths, chatting and shopping. Hawkers shout for attention, offering custom suits, or ice-cream, or shoes, or literally everything else in the world. Motorbikes weave through the mess like they're trying to single-handedly keep the world's personal injury lawyers in business. I'm catching my breath, sipping a lemonade and enjoying the novel sensation of not being bumped into from all sides. I catch sight of someone coming through the crowd. He's Nordic, towering a full foot above everyone around him. Sunglasses hide his eyes, and he's dressed in the kind of Hawaiian shirt that would only be worn ironically. Koreans are literally dwarfed by him, like Gulliver in the land of the Lilliputians. He's a freak. A giant. Completely outsized. After living in Chungju for the last nine months, this blonde monster is something of a shock.
I nod in his direction, "Erin. Look at that guy. He's enormous."
She turns in her seat, gives the guy a once over, then turns back to me. "He's really not that big."
"Are you kidding? He's like Godzilla!"
She gives me a look that questions my sanity. "You do realize you're taller than him, right?"
"What? No I'm..." I trail off, feeling suddenly self-conscious.
"Yeah, that's pretty much what you look like walking down the street." She smiles sweetly. "Hey, at least it's easy for me to find you in a crowd."