modern

Helen’s Kitchen

Name: Helen’s Kitchen (헬렌네 부엌)

Location: Samseong Dong


In Defence of Stamps

Sometimes it’s the little things in life that make the difference. There was a time when I would check the post every morning in the hope that there would abe a letter for me. I would ask my mother why was there never anything for me, and wistfully she would respond “well if you sent a letter to someone then maybe you would get something in return”. My obvious response was to drop my shoulders and curl my nose and skulk off muttering about some injustice or something.

I didn’t realise it until probably now that my mother’s response was probably something similar to what I know now. Personal letters or emails are wonderful, but they rarely come, or at least their infrequency is dwarfed by the sheer quantity of spam and bills. And even if I jump to the twenty-first century and talk about emails it doesn’t get much better, in fact it worsens.


Get Ready, Get Set…Chuseok

by Ben Haynes

What a wonderful time of year we’ve happened upon! The harvest season, celebrated in as many ways as there are people and religions on this blessed planet. Yes, it’s all about getting together and enjoying the company of family and and gorging on the fruits of a well worked field or cubicle. Maybe packing on a few kilos for the winter months for good measure.

To observe this time of bounty, Americans roast up the largest, antibiotic-filled, corn fed turkey we can find at the grocery and then stuff it with some….. stuffing.

Apples for Chuseok

Apples for Chuseok


Makgeolli Cocktail File – Cherry Mak & Tonic




And that’s exactly what it is!  When browsing through the fresh food section of the supermarket, we noticed the first fresh cherries on the shelves.  So we thought, why not chop them up and put them in a makgeolli cocktail?  The result was a surprisingly delicious treat!  The bitter sweetness of the fresh cherries mixed so well with the sour makgeolli, and the tonic just gave it that edge.   After giving it a good pulse in the blender with some ice, a nice foamy head topped off a pretty awesome cocktail.


Recognising Value in Korea

There’s a lot to be said for value. Much of what we value, or how we place value on something, depends on our recognition of the use and importance of the particular subject in question. Like a four day work week, which may have more value to a person who regularly works a five or six day week than to a person who only works three days a week. It’s all about how much worth we put in particular things.

Today is May 5. Up until around seven years ago this day meant nothing to me. There’s no reason to really celebrate May 5th in Ireland, other than when it is the first Monday of the month of May. In Korea, today is Children’s Day. In Mexico and the U.S. , today is Cinco de Mayo which is a day to celebrate Mexican heritage and pride.


I Live in Yeongtong-dong

I live in Yeongtong-dong in a normal suburban existence. There is nothing that stands out from where I live and how I live from all the other millions of other semi-bored suburbanites who populate the planet. My suburb is different but there is nothing that stands out. I like it this way.

If you are reading this from another country many things will amaze you, as Korea can be a visually amazing place. In Yeongtong-dong there are a lot of visually amazing sights, but as I have lived here for some time they have lost their wonder and they are only what surround me on a daily basis. They are normal. I like it this way.


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