The gym here is great. It cost me 75,000W (about $80) for the month. Which is pretty pricey for Korea. But get this… I go there and they not only give me as many towels as I need (instead of one, thank YOU YWCA), but they give you GYM STRIP. Shorts and a t-shirt. SWEET! Less laundry for me and I don’t have to haul shit around all over the place. Also, they gave me a really hip little bag. No, it is ugly. But it was FREE and now all the Koreans (and only Koreans, because the bag is (duh) in Korean) will know where I go to the gym.
My first problem is that the treadmill only speaks Korean. I suppose that makes sense because I’m in Korea but… but DAMN IT I DON’T SPEAK KOREAN!! And it isn’t like I can ask the treadmill if any of the other treadmills speak English. Stupid treadmills. So I take a guess at the buttons and figure “green should mean go”. No. No, it doesn’t. It means “do you want to run at a steady pace or kill yourself on one of the death running programs of this workout equipment you can’t translate”. So I hit blue and it moves. Thank God an up-arrow means up (and down the opposite). Red does mean stop, if you were wondering. But I was willing to just get off the stupid machine and let it run alone if it didn’t. And there are TVs hooked up to each machine. Which is cool, but I REFUSE to put on the headphones provided so you can hear the sound. EWW!
So after working out and stretching, I decide to be brave and try the shower. Why brave? Because it is naked-o-rama in there, man. And yes, they gave me two towels, but each one is about the size of a tea towel. So I hold it in front of me like a maitre d’ at a restaurant and the damned thing doesn’t cover anything. Which turns out to be fine, because I have to ditch the stupid “towels” at the door of the shower. I head in there and… holy shit. I was expecting a couple of rows of shower heads and that was about it. This was beautiful! There was lovely tile everywhere and soft music playing (seriously). There were two saunas and two bathing pools – one cool and one warm. So nice. Worth being naked for half an hour. I think I might even go back.
PS: If anyone tries to tell you that Koreans do not have a body odour, tell them to try running in between two Korean men (who only walk on the treadmills… I mean… what’s the POINT??) for half an hour. They are plenty odorous.