Wednesday, January 09, 2008

"Expat Living"

Tempranillo 2006
(Image from

I don't usually post more than once per day, but I'm making an exception today, for two reasons, both related to my life as an expatriate.

1. As an expat living in Korea and having the good fortune to work in Seoul as a university professor doing the sort of research and teaching that I enjoy and even being decently reimbursed for doing so, I have just enough time and funds to indulge in a few, simple epicurean delights and justify these as essential to my ongoing self-education in things cultural.

My lovely wife, Sun-Ae, ensures that I not invest too much of my money or time in this pursuit, which entails that she look for good buys of, e.g., excellent wine -- and since she's currently reading the Korean translation of the Japanese oenophile manga series Kami no Shizuki (The Drops of God), she will soon know far more about wine than I.

Maybe she already does, for she recently purchased a Tempranillo 2006 (Candidato) for less than 10,000 won (less than 10 dollars), and this Spanish wine -- full-bodied with a fruity aroma -- simply amazed me by how excellent it is. I'd consider it a good buy at two or three times the price.

Definitely one pleasure of expat living...

2. Speaking of expat living, the Korea Herald has started a new section titled "Expat Living." The moving force behind this is Matthew Lamers, whose articles have been appearing in the Herald's pages for the past year or so. Lamers has rounded up a number of expats living and working in Korea and asked them to write regular columns for the Herald's new "Expat Living" section.

I mentioned this before and promised to call attention to it again at an appropriate time. Well, that time has come. The section started this second week of January 2008 and appears in the Tuesday (8th) and Wednesday (9th) editions of the Korea Herald -- but also at the paper's online site (leftside links, "Expat Living"). My column appears next week, on January 16th, and will be titled "Expatiate," unless I hear differently.

Lamers has managed to persuade a number of Korea-based bloggers to contribute, many of whose blog entries are already at a professional level, so this new section of the Korea Herald could turn out very interesting.

Give "Expat Living" a look, and take the time to tell us if we're writing what you're looking for (not that I'll change, mind you...).

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At 9:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're slumming for the Herald? And to think I actually held you in high esteem. If you need some extra cash for those manon bottles of fruity Spanish wine, couldn't you freelance doing something a little more respectable, like plastering loan shark stickers on apartment doors and utility poles?

At 10:01 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

It's a new feature, Sonagi. We're trying to bring the paper up to the level of yellow journalism.

Seriously, the Herald is a whole lot better than it was 12 years ago. I recall some expat back then who would post long, meandering pieces about such things as using water poured into some sort of special bowl for seeing into the future -- published in the Herald as if this were on the level of fact.


(By the way, is there much money to be made in loan sharking?)

Jeffery Hodges

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At 11:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Go back and reread your post to figure out the "manon" bottle of wine. Hint: think about the word as it's actually pronounced, not its standard Romanization.

At 11:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, and I have waiting for me a bottle of Carolina sweet muscadine wine. I normally prefer dry wines, but after hearing so much about the powerful anti-aging, heart-protective resveratrol, found most abundantly in muscadine grapes, I spent ten minutes carefully scanning the wine aisle in my local grocery store before finding a few lonely bottles among rows and rows of merlots, pinot noirs, cabernet sauvignons, and other unpatriotic-sounding names. I hope that this wine, like yours, exceeds the expectations of its $8 price tag.

At 11:47 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Ah . . . man won. 10,000 won. Lucky me that I know at least that tiny bit of Korean.

Enjoy your muscadine presvere-a-troll.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 11:17 AM, Blogger ZenKimchi said...

Please more wine recommendations. I went looking for this one last night and couldn't find it at my local E-Mart. I need something to give me a break from Carlos Rossi.

At 12:30 PM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

We got our bottle near Shinchon Station in the Hyundae Department Store (basement area).

Maybe that helps you in your search. I'll try to remember to occasionally mention a fine wine as my wife and I slowly drink our way through the ones that we've purchased...

Jeffery Hodges

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