it’s all about seoul
korea is currently the second richest country in asia. having host the olympics in 1988 and the world cup in 2002, it is an asian economic miracle. while many developing countries talk about being developed, south korea went from developing to developed in just a few decades. i see evidence of that everywhere in seoul.
food – s.korea must have been a very poor country. in a society whereby people eat pickled food everyday, i am sure there is a practical reason for that. they have mastered the skill of making food last longer. and if you look at everyday korean diet, they eat very little meat.
be wary when drinking with koreans- they will f**king kill you. soju is 20% alcohol. it’s the most foul tasting form of alcohol.
i wonder what koreans eat. how come they are so tall? the men have bigger chests than me and the women – a lot of them have really nice legs. when i went to olympics park, i was delighted to see how well maintained the stadiums are. although the olympics took place there, 20 years ago, they really took care of the facilities and built a huge park around it. however for a developed country, i was surprised to see the number of smokers but after checking the price of cigarettes, i understand why. at 2,500 won- fags are still cheap!
s.korea is very environmentally conscious – you don’t see them using plastic forks or chopsticks. everything is stainless steel and people sort out their thrash. i like that.
i wonder if s.koreans are that patriotic or if they have no choice but to use local brands. 90% of the cars are local brands. hmm, i have a funny feeling about this. the cost of entry for foreign players must be huge and after looking at the way people shop at duty free, i think s.koreans are just like us – they crave international goods.
if i ever wanted to dobusiness in s.korea – i might look into running a black market selling foreign goods. sometimes governments really shit themselves with this idea of protectionism. people are so resourceful these days, do they really think that by keeping foreign stuff at high prices – that will help them? sooner or later, these giant conglomerates will become complacent.very much like sony or gm.
we were advised to not go to the national museum by the tour guide – don’t believe them. the national museum is really one of the best in asia i have seen. don’t believe in tour guides and don’t buy anything at places they bring you to.
the rise of the chinese consumer – it’s real. i thought that communication would be a vital problem in s.korea but a lot of shop assistants speak mandarin. this is good sign – i do believe that the reason why japan went into decline is rigidity. at least the s.koreans are starting to acknowledge that. even from as far as 5 years back, i noticed the burgeoning korean community in china.
after all said and done, seoul is amazing. i love it as much as beijing. one of the things i like most about it is the fact that both of these two cities are really old. it is easy to stumble upon a historical relic and see the stark difference from where it was to what it is at present. two things i’d wished i had done in seoul – i wanted to see how a middle class family live and i didn’t have time to go to a supermarket. you can tell a lot about a country by looking at what people buy.