Thinking of my wife reminded me of my next task- getting her and I some ancient homeopathic remedies at the local Chinese herb shop. As I walked towards the river on Couch, I noticed the next stop ahead a block or so, the record shop. But first, I needed some herbs so I headed into the little shop.
I had never been in here before, but my wife and I had always wanted to check it out. The bell on the door chimed as I walked in. There must have been over a hundred clear glass jars, a little bigger than mayonnaise jars, all filled with different types of herbs. They all had labels on them to tell what each contained, but I had no idea what they said. The Chinese characters on them just stared back at me. A small, thin Asian man was standing behind the counter. I assumed he was Chinese considering my location.
“Hello, sir. How can I help you?” he asked.
“Man, am I glad you’re here to help. I’m a little rough with my Chinese.” I declared.
“Oh, it’s OK. I know Chinese, so I can get the herb you seek”, he responded.
“Wonderful. I need four items: green tea, jasmine, ginkgo biloba…”
He interrupted and said, “OOOOO, very nice herbs. Ginkgo is good for the mind. Green tea is good for the body. Very good. You are going to combine the green tea with the jasmine?”
“Yup. The jasmine, I think, makes the tea taste better. I also...”
He interrupted again. “Very good”
“Yeah, um, I also need ginseng. At least three of the…” He interrupted again.
“Very nice. Ginseng is good for the sex drive! Very good. Important for an aging man like you.”
“Yeah, well, I have a Chinese wife, well, half Chinese and she recommended it for me” I added.
“Oh, she is too much for you!” he laughed. “Chinese women are very hungry, especially the older ones.”
Wow, this guy wasn’t shy. I couldn’t figure out if he was trying to help me, or make fun of me. I felt a little uncomfortable, but I tried not to show it. So I attempted to hide the awkwardness and said, “You’re telling me. She’s an animal now.”
He started shaking his head “no”, and responded. “Ginseng is not enough. I have something special for you.” He then walked away towards the back of the store, bent down, and opened a chest. It was a beautiful wooden chest with intricate Chinese carvings all over it. He then pulled out a jar, similar to the other glass jars, and placed it on the counter in front of me.
“This is a very special herb. It’s an ancient Chinese remedy. I usually don’t recommend it because it is so strong. It is natural Viagra. You will like this very much”, he assured me.
“What’s it called?” I asked.
“Horney Goat Weed”, he responded.
“What an appropriate name” We both smiled at each other. “How much for everything”, I asked.
“Forty-seven dollars”, he responded while put my herbs into a bag.
“Thank you for your help. I’m sure my wife will appreciate your advice”. I smiled at him and walked out.