Long Weekend trip to Seoul – Cars and Kimchi

About two weeks ago, I had the chance to fly to Korea and visit a friend of mine who is teaching English in Incheon, which is kind of like the Newark of Seoul, as best as I can gather.

I was in Seoul on the day that North Korea successfully tested a Hydrogen bomb underground in the northeastern part of the country. No physical effects were felt, aside from a weird alarm that went off in Gangnam station (we weren’t the only ones who appeared confused). The test effectively caused an earthquake for some Chinese cities bordering North Korea.

The highlight of the weekend was Kwangjang Market (광장시장), where my friend and I had pork and Kimchi dumplings (photos included).

On the car side, the market is dominated by 5 domestic players: Hyundai, Kia, Daewoo, Renault Samsung, and SsangYong. I’d guess that these brands make up for 80%-90% of sales. Surprisingly, consumer preferences seemed look like the American market from 10-15 years ago – standard 4 door sedans and mid-sized SUVs on truck frames are the hot ticket items. I’ve seen Ssangyong cars in other countries in Asia, but I took this opportunity to photograph their hideousness for you.

Settling in to Hanoi still doesn’t feel quite finished – I’ve only found a dry cleaner last week, and I’m still buying furniture, but I’m trying to keep the blog posts coming.