“The Smell of Kimchi is Gone.”

Today I met some man at the gas station who’d lived in Busan for three months while working for AT&T. (He hated Korea, for the record.)

After talking—briefly—about soju he leaned in close and touched my shoulder. He looked at Mom and said, “Excuse me, I’m not going to be inappropriate.”

He dipped his head to my shoulder and sniffed me. “At least the smell of kimchi is gone!”

When I got off the plane, I could smell everyone. Today I walked past some young man and was assaulted with the scent of aftershave and deodorant. I had said as much to Mom at the time. This man had no way of knowing this.

Mom and I both burst out laughing.