Daily Life in Korea

Check out some random photos of life in Korea:

A man prepares creme-filled dinosaurs for sale in Seomun Market, Daegu
Filling a bag with guk hwa bbang, a red bean-filled snack, at Seomun Market, Daegu
Spreading oil on a griddle at Jagalchi fish market, in Busan
A Turkish man performing tricks to boost ice cream sales and delight (or disappoint) children
A very un-PC Korean merchant dressed as a Native American

And a lighter note…

A dyed poodle in the latest canine fashions on Haeundae Beach, Busan

Dogs like this are pretty common sights all over Korea.  In Daegu, I recently saw a little white dog with four yellow rainboots.  It was not pleased and was walking in a ridiculous manner, although the owner certainly didn’t seem to notice.

Continue Reading

First birthdays, Seomun Market, and some photos – finally!

Yesterday we finished up our first work week.  My students were all good but you could tell they couldn’t wait for class to be over… and who could blame them? I felt the same way!

Today was Mr. Kim’s daughter’s first birthday party, and all of our coworkers were invited.  A child’s first birthday is considered very important in Korea, so we were excited to be able to share in this unique cultural experience.  The party (aka an awesome buffet lunch) was at the Daegu Grand Hotel.  Unfortunately, I didn’t follow everything, but Ji Oo (Mr. Kim’s daughter) looked adorable in her pink hanbok! At a certain point, the child is presented with a table full of different items which each represent a potential future.  For instance, money symbolizes prosperity, food items may symbolize health, a book symbolizes education, and so on.  When it was time for Ji Oo to choose her item, she was fast asleep and couldn’t be bothered… so Mr. Kim placed a 50,000 won note in her hand and everybody cheered and took photos!

Mr. and Mrs. Kim with their daughter, Ji Oo

After the party, we went with Beth and Jess to Seomun Market, the largest traditional market in Daegu.  You can basically buy anything you want at Seomun since it’s so massive.  Fruits, vegetables, meat, live animals, textiles, jewelry, snacks, craft supplies, clothing, shoes… and the list goes on and on.  There’s a lot to explore there, so Andy and I definitely need to go back and really wander.

Hanbok for sale at Seomun Market

We went home after the market and unwound a bit, but not until we had taken a computer chair and coffee table out of the trash and re-purposed it for our own uses 🙂 We get enough stares in our neighborhood as it is, but never as many as today when we noisily wheeled a chair 2 blocks over uneven pavement.  Oh well, joke’s on them – we have a super comfy balcony now.  I needed a new charger for my Macbook (mine died two days ago) so we went downtown and I bought a new one.  Only 98,000 won 🙁 Then we met some friends for dinner and drinks – started at Traveler’s, ate at Pan Asia and headed to Organ, which seemed like a Western bar but I’m not 100%.  It had a more intimate vibe than Traveler’s and definitely cooler music.  We were having a good time when Andy realized it was almost time for the last train! Cabs are not that expensive, but the train is cheaper… so we booked it to Banwoldang and made the very last train, which happens to end at our stop.  11:45 PM if anyone’s interested.  I didn’t really mind calling it a night so early since we had had a pretty full day.  Best part: no work tomorrow 🙂

Sparklers downtown!

Continue Reading