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On Friday, April 12th, we woke up really late in our comfy room at JPUSA. Since Debbie had encouraged us to stay for as long as we wanted, we decided to take her up on the offer and most of the day became a pajama day, hanging out catching up on internet stuff, drinking tea. It was great until around mid-afternoon I began to develop another really bad headache, slowly turning into a migraine. It’s got to be the stress and exhaustion of touring, because I’ve been getting these so much more consistently than usual. As the day wore on it got worse and worse. I was mostly just upset that it was ruining this wonderfully relaxing day.

Finally we figured getting outside might do me some good, so we packed up and headed out, running into Debbie on the way to say our goodbyes and super grateful thank yous. I’d run out of surfaces to paint on the night before, so our first stop was at a Home Depot a little bit away. We had a lot of time to kill, since our next Pocket Vinyl show was late that night right there in Chicago, so we wandered Home Depot and picked out thick turquoise carpet, sliding glass doors, and a beautiful black maple counter-top for a home neither of us ever see ourselves owning. We got 12 new masonite boards cut, which just so happen to be exactly the number of shows we have left until we get home!

From there we continued driving towards the venue, but happened to be passing through Chicago’s Koreatown. Passing by a tiny Korean restaurant, Eric mournfully exclaimed how he wished we could eat there. My response was, why not? So we turned the car around and got some delicious bibimbap, along with a huge array of different kimchi sides and pickled vegetables. The spiciness and taste and the choppy English of the cute family that ran the shop were all so familiar and comforting. Eric & I really can’t wait to go back. This might be as good a time as any to mention something that’s been in the works for a few months now: At the end of June Eric & I are going back to Korea. We missed it so much, but aren’t ready to commit a year’s worth of teaching English, so I e-mailed a woman at the church I went to while I was there. She very enthusiastically invited us both back, offering to help us out with our plane tickets and give us a place to stay! We’ll be volunteering at the church’s summer camp for July, August, and part of September. We’re both super excited. It’ll be nice to get over to Asia again.

Dinner helped get my mind off my pounding headache for a bit, but not for very long. It came back as we continued driving, getting worse and worse. Suddenly I spotted a Whole Foods and asked Eric to stop. In the past really dark chocolate has helped relieve bad headaches that I’ve had, and I figured it at least couldn’t hurt. Also, if I’m going to buy dark chocolate, I’d much rather spend a bit more to get some really good stuff and get it fair trade, so I feel morally a bit better about the purchase. I got the Endangered Species Chocolate, which I’ve been getting since college and really like because they donate a portion of their proceeds to help support species, habitat, and humanity. (Look at what a good person I am everybody!!)

Have I mentioned our “Monthly Money”? After some financial arguments at the beginning of our marriage (since we have joint finances) we agreed that each of us get an amount of “Monthly Money” to spend on whatever we want, judgment free. It works out awesomely. Usually though, Eric spends his way faster than I do, while I am much more tightfisted. After picking out my chocolate I was admiring expensive sheep and goat cheese, when Eric suggested why don’t I just get some. I was feeling crummy, I love sheep and goat cheeses, and I still had almost all of my Monthly Money. So I did. And it felt good to treat myself a little while I was feeling so miserable. Also, while the headache still lingered, the chocolate did help quite a bit. And, if we could afford it, I wish we could shop at Whole Foods regularly.

Well, finally we ended up at Stage Bar, the location of our Friday night show, barely 15 minutes from JPUSA. There was a bit of confusion when we showed up. The day before Eric had checked their website and couldn’t find anything saying we’d be performing on Friday. So he called the bar up and they said yes, Pocket Vinyl was scheduled to play. But when we showed up none of the posters we’d sent were up. Then the first guy from one of the other bands showed up and said he knew of three bands playing that night and we were not one of them. Hm… Then the door guy showed up, who’d booked the other three bands but not us. Apparently another guy who worked at Stage Bar had booked us but had not communicated to the booker. We might have backed down from the show, but we had a good amount of friends coming out for the show. So after some talking we decided to play a quick set to open the night, then take off. That seemed to please everyone, so we settled in to wait for things to begin.

Soon before our set our good friends Josh and Sarah showed up with friends! Josh was the pastor of Eric’s church in Korea, and Sarah had helped me get connected with my church when I went to Korea. They’d just recently moved to Indiana after years in Korea, and it was so wonderful to see them!

After the show they won the bid on the painting and we all headed out to a diner near their home in Indiana to catch up some together.

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Eric told me this was his favorite of the flower-headed girls.

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(Also, as we found out later, a bunch of our friends we were also hoping to see at this show ended up having some very good excuses for not being able to make it.)

Josh & Sarah haven’t been able to move into their own house yet, but they found us a woman in their church that didn’t mind putting us up for the night. I took some NyQuil in a final effort to rid myself of this horrible headache and passed out for the rest of the night.

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