In 1999, while still in the Air Force, I went TDY to Osan AB Korea. It just so happened I landed there on my birthday. I was in Korea for 45 days and let me tell you I had the time of my life. This was my first experience with the orient and I loved it. It is where I fell in love with oriental women. On base me and a buddy would go to the bar and hustle pool for drinks and after a couple pitchers (that we would always win) we would go down town. We hit every bar. There was even a russian bar to our surprise. No oritentials just russian women stripping and then sitting with you while you bought them drinks (juice to be exact).
I remember seeing one cat my entire time there and it was running for it’s life across the golf course on base. While strolling through down town Osan i went through the market. Now this is a place full of a million smells. All of which will make you want to vomit by the time you make it to the end. Vegis, raw fish, raw meat, raw cat, you name it.
So like I said I arrived on my birthday so my first night there me and my buddy decided to hit the town early….1pm to be exact. We hit a place for lunch, it was good and I had heard about this drink called Soju. So I ordered some. They brought it to me in a little bottle. I drank it and thought “this is like vodka, what is the big deal?” So I had another. We left and started hitting the bars. Now in the bars they have US drinks and they have the local drink called OB which is $1.00 so of course we had the OBs. BUT I wanted more Soju. So I orded those too. Now in the bars the girls would dance, and strip (Remember this is in 1999, I don’t know what they do now) but depending on the bar left their bottoms on and when their song was up they would leave the stage and a new girl would go up. They would dress and go sit with someone in the crowd. Well while they were with you if you wanted them to stay you bought them a drink…(Their drink). Mama-son was always watching and if she thought you were an easy catch she would be right on you offering the “juicy girl” to you for only “200 won” In other words she was prostituting them out.
Now a little side story, there was a barber shop off base where we could go (technically we couldn’t go it was off limits if you were caught) and they would give you a haircut and massage (just like all the barber shops did except one little extra) while you got your massage, you also got a blowjob (now you see why it was off limits to the military).
So like I was saying, me and my buddy hit every bar we could. We would stay for maybe 4 drinks then leave and hit the next one. That was how we found the Russian bar and OMG these women were hot but I digress. We went from bar to bar, had some rat on stick from the roadside vendors, hit BK but that was not a burger they put in them buns let me tell you, it was disgusting. Finally, we hit a bar and we decide to stay longer than normal. We are drinking and having fun. Mind you every bar we hit I ordered Soju.
Now, I remember we had these Juicy girls with us and they wanted us to order them a drink, so I asked what the hell was in that small shot glass that I was paying $5 for. They said juice….hence the name juicy girl. OH HELL NO….I was not paying $5 for a shot of juice. I rememeber telling her if she wanted something it was going to be alchoholic if I was paying for it and I looked at my watch and it was 10:30pm. That is the last thing I remember. Next thing I know I wake up on a bed with a trash can next to it, I have no clue where I am until my roommate walks in, thank God. I run to the bathroom desperately trying to throw up but cant. For 3 days I was sick to my stomach and couldn’t throw up. I had to meet the group commander that day too. Luckily I made it on time and while I was in his office he was yelling at a captain which severly hurt my brain. Then he took me around for a tour of the base.
I found out later that soju was made from formaldehyde and unregulated which was why I could drink and drink and it have not effect until I found that one bottle that kicked my ass. And that it did. After that night I stuck to OBs with the ocassional ammo bowl. I did get a great blanket from there for only $45 and I use to this day. And I had an Army chick throw me against the air conditioning unit and do things in public I was not prepared for. So to this day Osan, Korea is one of my most memorable experiences.