Monday, June 13, 2011

South Korea Update

A quick update from South Korea!  I am on vacation here through next Sunday.  I'll continue my series on Lending Club when I get back, but for now, three things I've noticed in Korea.

1.  The subways in Seoul are both very clean and usually packed to the brim with people.  Makes sense, Seoul has more people than New York City (although Seoul has a lower population density).  I heard that people would be pushy, but I haven't found that to be the case.  I'm probably getting the sanitized treatment because I'm bigger than the average South Korean, though. 

Another feature I like on the subways: maps on the train with a moving LED light showing your train's position.  A little thing that really helped this tourist out.

2.  Everything talks to you.  GPS, elevators, toilets.  Everything.

3.  People are fit.  Spent a few days in the wonderful Jeju Island walking around all the tourist traps.  One activity was fairly strenuous, walking up Sunsan Ilchulbong Crater, a fairly steep ~200 meters.  Nevertheless, Koreans appearing to be 50, 60, and 70+ years of age were making the hike.  My girlfriend's relatives here are mostly in their late 40s or early 50s, but they all appear to me to be in their early or mid 30s.  So maybe those Koreans that I saw in Jeju were actually 70, 80, and 90+ years of age.

Their healthiness I think is due to their diet and exercise (surprise!).  Korea is famous for its barbecue,  but Koreans eat a ton of fruit and vegetables.  Furthermore, Koreans walk and bike everywhere.

I still have a lot of fun things ahead of me in Korea.  I am especially looking forward to visiting the DMZ, but it may not be possible.

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