Saturday Morning Fish Wrap: Kimchi and Thousand-Year-Old-Eggs Will Give You Gas

Big earthernware jars used to make kimchi ... that;s a whole lot of pickled sauerkraut!  (all photo credit goes to Wikipedia on this one)

Kimchee is great stuff. Eat enough of it, and you'll be bursting with intestinal discomfort health in no time. Take it away, Wikipedia: Many South Koreans credit their nation's rapid economic growth in part to eating kimchi. The dish is made of various vegetables and contains a high concentration of dietary fiber, while being low in calories. One serving also provides over 50% of the daily recommended amount of vitamin C and carotene. Most types of kimchi contain onions, garlic, and chilli peppers, all of which are salutary. The vegetables being made into kimchi also contribute to the overall nutritional value. Kimchi is rich in vitamin A, thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), calcium, and iron, and contains a number of lactic acid bacteria, … [Read more...]

Travel Notes: Just Say Ahn-Nyeong Hah-Seh-Yo and Kon’nichi Wa

Just a couple words is all you need to know when traveling abroad. "Hello" and "thank you" and a big smile will open a lot of doors in the East, especially in a business setting, and most especially coming from Americans, renowned foreign-language ignoramuses. For this reason, I was a little panicked upon arriving in Tokyo, having somehow forgotten the dozen or so Japanese words and phrases I picked up years ago on a project jobsite. The Blackberry and Google Translate to the rescue, and the first taxi ride was successfully negotiated. A bit irritating how my brain can retain the totally useless Charm of Making from Excalibur, but not vital information like foreign language phrases. Minnesota Nice Highly recommend Minneapolis as a … [Read more...]

Stuff You Can Steal From Korean Hotel Rooms

Too Many Choices

Count me in as a light-fingered guest.  After all, what's a couple more pounds of luggage weight with a full-fare economy ticket?  Apart from the all the little doodads like dental and shaving kits, shampoo and conditioner, and stuff you really shouldn't can't steal (like bathrobes), the  appointments in Korean hotels I stayed in a recent trip were way above average.  Vanity kits, sewing kits, and lots of little soap cakes.  It all goes in the suitcase.   What do the contents of a hotel room tell you about a culture? This was the first time I'd been to Korea. I'd long worked with Korean companies, both as customer and supplier, so a bit of Korean culture, food and some cultural norms were not unknown to me. I had picked up a … [Read more...]



Funny how topics flow together. During this past week's stay in South Korea, our first night was at the Lotte Hotel in Ulsan. A large and adequate place, a little sterile with all the white marble. Housed in the Lotte Shopping Center. I was vaguely familiar with the Lotte name, from a baseball book I read years ago (*).  The Chiba Lotte Marines are a major league baseball team in Japan.  On the hotel nightstand, there was a copy of a book of Goethe's "The Sorrows of Young Werther".  In skimming through the book, the history of the Lotte conglomerate was revealed on the front inside leaf. From the Wikipedia entry: Lotte's first company was founded in June 1948 in Tokyo, Japan by a Korean businessman, Shin Kyuk-Ho (신격호, … [Read more...]