I had garlic flavored milk with my cereal this morning and not for the first time. The first time was back in Busan. I was doing a backing activity and need a bit of milk to make the frosting for the cookies. My boss obliged, whipping a small container out of her office mini fridge. I mixed it with the powdered sugar until the frosting was the right consistency, spread it over cookies and handed them out. I had one myself. It tasked wrong, but I couldn't but my finger on it. I sniffed the milk. It wasn't spoiled but it was wrong. I asked my box what she thought. She sniffed the milk and said it was fine. About three days later we were in the office when she opened her refrigerator. I was close enough this time to get slapped in the face with ode de garlic.
The elementary school is closed for winter break right now. That means no school lunch. I stopped partaking in school lunch about August, in part because of the office bully, but mostly I planned to eat healthier and loose weight. I always plan to lose weight but then a donut walks up and says "Eat me." It would be rude to say no.
It took me a little over a month to successfully stop ordering out and develop a lunch menu. But cooking meals at home didn't last. In the end I settled for making a sandwich for lunch everyday. It has lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and ham. To be clear, in Korea ham has taken on the meaning of cold cut. It can be chicken, turkey or ham. This week it's chicken. Last week ham was ham.
Anyway, since it's break the teachers from the Philippines are bringing their Korean lunches to work.The dish varies but is generally know as Garlic Oh My. It flavors everything to garlic. I was getting annoyed about that. I could bring a small fresh milk everyday. And then it hit me. I could just eat breakfast at home. Duh. I can't remember exactly when or why I started eating breakfast in the office, but the habit has become so entrenched the obvious solution wasn't obvious.
M.R. Jordan is a writer, editor, sporadic blogger, and lover of beer. Lives in South Korea with her two cats, Bear and Geumbi.
Bear (Gom in Korean) then (above) now (below)
Geumbi (Gold in English)... then (above) and now (below).