Magazines too expensive???

Written by admin on May 19, 2008 – 12:54 pm -

If you’re like me, one of the items in my checklist when I move to a new country is to scope out the local bookstores. In South Korea, english magazines are difficult to find and very expensive if you do find them, almost twice the cover price at best. I know there are sources for free magazines but this is beyond the scope of my blog entry.

An alternative exists, a good one too especially if you move a lot since you download the magazines and store them on your computer or laptop. They’re called digital magazines from Zinio. A proprietary reader is available free for download from Zinio’s website for both Mac OS and Windows. Exactly the same right down to those irritating subscriptiion cards that fall out as you read them.

I discovered Zinio 6 years ago when I got sick of paying the exhorbitant prices of my favorite magazines in Seoul. The choice of magazine titles have expanded over the years and its safe to say that after all these years they’ll be staying for good. Some magazines are available for free so that you can test and see for yourself if Zinio is for you.

I’m sure that other people especially those living in western countries can find a lot of reasons why this product would not appeal to them but for those of us who live in places where foreign magazines are not readily available then this solution is a godsend. For me, the price was one of the major reasons that sealed the deal. For example a single issue of Popular Mechanics is about USD 5.99, in Seoul is cost about W10,000, a whole year’s digital subscription from Zinio is USD 7.99 and single issues are USD 1.99.

Check them out at

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Posted in Seoul, Shopping | No Comments »

The Surgeon General has…

Written by admin on May 13, 2008 – 6:00 am -

I swear that this is the first time I’ve seen this anywhere, patients at a hospital allowed to go out to take smoke breaks, with their I.V.’s attached nonetheless. This is isn’t the first time I’ve seen this, patients in Korea are allowed to step out to take a smoke, I was fortunate enough to have my digicam handy at the time, too bad I could not get closer to clearly show the cigarette he was holding. I guess this patient isn’t in for lung cancer or emphysema.

Posted in South Korea | 2 Comments »

Buddha’s Birthday

Written by admin on May 12, 2008 – 9:43 pm -

석가탄신일 (Seokga tansinil) or ‘the day of Buddha’s birthday’ was celebrated today and was a non-working public holiday. My family and I were at Bonguensa Temple last night taking photos of the very beautiful lanterns that were in display. More photos here.

I woke my sons up early today and we spent the better part of the morning playing soccer at Hangang Park. I couldn’t help but think why the our government can’t provide these kinds of facilities to its citizens.

Posted in Seoul | 2 Comments »

F3 status finally!

Written by admin on May 10, 2008 – 6:00 am -

It’s official! I received my family’s passports from immigration last Friday and I’m pleased to say that they indeed issued my family F3 visas in Korea, Could we have been lucky or have the rules changed allowing for a change of status in South Korea. Whatever it is… I’m glad we did get them here. Included with the passports were their Certificates of Alien Registration.


Just to recap, my family arrived on tourist visa’s and changed their status in country by filling out a visa application form with photos, marriage certificate, birth certificate (for children), a copy of work visa and alien registration card plus W110,000 for each applicant. Next stop, renewal of my wife’s driver’s license.


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Posted in South Korea | 3 Comments »

San Mig in Seoul

Written by admin on May 9, 2008 – 1:16 pm -

Not really a beer drinker but there’s something about seeing a brown bottle of San Miguel beer in a foreign supermarket that makes you think about home. It makes me think about how much potential for global marketing our other products have. We’ve got a lot of unique brands such as Selecta Ice Cream and Sarsi which is way better than any sarsaparilla I’ve tasted when I was working in New Zealand or Australia. But at 2600 Won (USD 2.60) ouch!!!

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Posted in Seoul, Shopping | No Comments »