korean culture

Night Lights in Nampo

If you live in Busan, and haven’t yet strolled through Nampodong after dark this season, I suggest hopping on line 1 as soon as possible to check out Christmas–Korea style.  

You’ll spot a whole lot of the typical holiday symbols…


Is Korea Safe?

As tensions rise between the North and South, foreigners question if it’s safe to travel or live in South Korea.


A Long and Beautiful Climb

Begin your ascent up any South Korean mountain, and within seconds you’ll witness the barrage of outdoor wear that paints the trails in this small but peak-filled nation–a head-to-toe ensemble of high-performance boots, quick-dry long sleeves, loose-fit rain-resistant pants, form-fittting day packs, ultra-wide visors, and professional light-weight walking sticks that could tame an Andes summit.  It’s a uniform worn by almost every Korean who sets foot on a hill.  It’s a commitment to the journey.  It’s the gear of champions.  Koreans, I have learned, like to get their hike on. 

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The September Issue, Vogue, and Korea’s Fashion Climb

In early August, Julian Kong, the editor of Eloquence, sent me an email asking if I’d be interested in writing a feature-length story for their upcoming issue. 

“It’s about Anna Wintour,” he wrote, “the editor in chief of Vogue Magazine.”  Julian suggested I watch the documentary The September Issue, which follows the making of Vogue’s largest-ever edition of the magazine, its 2007 September issue.

The story assignment was two-fold: “a bio on Wintour plus the effects of fashion in Seoul and how it’s changing the city to a more globalized pace.”


No Sex in the City: Demystifying Korea’s Low Birthrate

Last June, Eloquence’s managing editor Dann Gaymer emailed me with a story assignment to “look at why Korea has such a low birthrate.”  (“Korea has a low birthrate?”  I remember thinking.)  I had lived here only four months, and was just starting to discover some of the more complex aspects of Korean culture.  The message continued: “Social, biological, economical, choose your angle and run with it.”

A little (okay, a LOT of) research later, the piece took shape, and was published in the July issue alongside a photo of the “Carl the Plastic Baby” billboard by Toronto street artist Dan Bergeron (a.k.a. Fauxreel).

(View article below.)

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Dom's ESL Cafe

Welcome to Dom's ESL Cafe, your ESL Information and International ESL Job Site, for Korea and Asia. Here you will find information about living abroad and teaching English as a second language overseas, including a wide array of types of ESL jobs, Korean customs, South Korean culture. This information is drawn from personal experience (teaching ESL abroad since 2001), research and interviews. All information on Dom’s ESL Cafe has been carefully researched and is accurate and up to date. Topics include: Teaching English in Korea, Korean Culture, Art and Museums, Visas, The Right School, ESL Employment Types, First Arriving, Korean Dating, Marrying Korean, Being A Great ESL Teacher and much more. Personal anecdotes, articles, up to date and accurate information as well as 7 Photo Galleries will give you excellent insight into the world of teaching English (ESL) in Korea and Asia.

Korean Traditional Wedding.

Thanks to my dear friend Soon, that I got an opportunity to witness this Lavish yet Traditional Korean Wedding. It was an awesome experience for me and luckily the commentators were explaining the rituals in English. So here are pictures with detailed description about the rituals from what I remember..

The Wedding Hall Exterior.


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