It is one of the most bizarre aspects to this culture I have noticed. It is either full out forward or nothing with them.
When you are on the bus, you WILL get car sick. I’ve been driving for a very long time, consider myself to be better than most yet the bus drivers here are something! There is no light slow stopping. No, it’s a series of quick jabs to the brakes. Most time it’s emergency braking because every single one of them tailgate. Every one!
It doubly sucks of you live in the country side and have to take those twisty back roads at the speed limit! Seriously, you are flung around, back and forth. I was on an intercity bus once where I was literally holding for dear life or else I would be dangling from the seatbelt sideways. The most fucking annoying ride ever but I’d take that over feeling sick any day.
Now, while on the buses, there is the matter of temp control. The vast majority of drivers are like FULL BLAST then nothing. This for for heat of cold. My ride today is a prime example. There is snow on the ground and I have to strip down to a tee-shirt because I’m sweating on the bus. Stupid drivers is their window to keep cool while the rest of us are hot as hell.
I can also say the same for drinking. Soju is the world’s best selling spirit and not by a small amount either. Were talking by a factor of 2 versus second place! With the cost being around $1 per bottle and averaging 15% to 19% abv), even the homeless can get wasted with ease. It’s a real problem here.
Like I said. No moderation here. Not when 12% of your population is your main source of income. (See article linked and the reference to 6,000,000 consumers every day).
I got my first haircut in Korea. I reallllly need to work on my Korean as well as not assuming that hair-clipper setting #3 in Canada is NOT the same as clipper setting #3 in Korea.
I’m no “Ox Baker” but I’m sure he would approve. I think I now have more hair on my face than on my head. Ah well, in 4 months, I’ll be able to get another trim….just not this short.
Like all of the US, and some parts of Canada, they sell Alcohol in all their stores.
This is our local grocery story (GS Supermarket). By far, Soju (Rice-based alcohol) is the cheapest. Typically around $1 a bottle and has an alcohol content of about 20%. I tried a little shot of it awhile ago, not terribly pleasant and it easily explains how easy it is to get drunk over here.
And here we see the first real snowfall of the year.
The snowflakes are huge. No the picture is not zoomed it, this is my ‘view’ out our window. I can almost touch the next building.
While we don’t have Tim Hortons, we do have Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks.
This, I believe, is the first Starbucks in Korea to use the Korean script (Hangul) in its title. This one is in Insadong.
Western food chain stores continually expand over here. This is Korea’s first Taco Bell in Itaewon.
And right by it you have Quizno’s along with Cold Stone Creamery.
I have had one and almost a second bad experience in Quizno’s (One in Canada and the second here). I’ll just avoid them in the future.
Itaewon is a major tourist/shopping area. They have a TON of street vendors all with these large carts. Here you see them taking them from their parking location to their street spot. They all have little electric motors to help move them.
Let us not forget the ubiquitous Hard Rock Cafe.
A side note on this. The Hard Rock cafes have a saying on each building that says “Love All. Serve All.”, this one does not.
I continually try to meet new people. One of the guys I have met is in the US Military (there are a whole bunch of US bases here). If you are married and have a child, you can get a bigger and much nicer place. He lives in an apartment building but his place is two stories. It’s rather large (I would dare say bigger than our house from Hamilton) but just no backyard. It’s very nice, lots of wood used in decorating, and not the cheap wood either. That being said, the view off his porch gives a bit of an idea of what housing/apartments are like around the Itaewon area.
Can you spot the white bunnies on the rooftop? Not gonna speculate on what they being used for, but who knows. I know of some foreigners who keep bunnies as pets here.