Thursday, January 7, 2010

No Thaw in Thight!

The weather remains the big news story here, as the Korea Meteorological Administration reports that temperatures across Korea hit a nine-year low. Tomorrow is not expected to be any better--and may be a degree or two worse. We may break the freezing point next Thursday, according to my weather gadget (to your right). And even then, it's going to snow again!

My twenty-minute walk to work isn't all that bad, especially with my super-great "Baxter State" parka from LL Bean, free gloves that were given to all Young-il teachers by an alumnus recently, an extra-long scarf made of genuine New Zealand wool, and this item:

Mine are the AirWalk brand, and are the best W6,000 I've spent all winter. Warm ears are the key feeling warm all over!

The foot of snow we got on Monday, added to a couple inches last week, hasn't even begun to melt, except over storm drain grates. The city has been spurred into action, and promises to levy fines against those who don't remove snow from around their homes or businesses. It doesn't say where they should put it, though I'm sure a disgruntled citizen or two has a thought on that.

The same Korea Herald article reports:
While citizens face a heavier responsibility for clearing snow, drivers could be exempted from fines if their traffic violation is proven to be due to the heavy snow that fell on the nation this week, according to the National Police Agency.
Many drivers have been filing petitions over the past few days about traffic fines, claiming that violations were due to the snow or the resulting icy roads. Most involved traffic light violations.
"We will analyze the road surveillance camera recordings in case of such complaints and check whether the violations were indeed inevitable," said an NPA official.

This seems to me quite reasonable, even if it is a reminder, as though the ubiquitous CCTV signs weren't enough, that Big Brother is watching.

The need to remove the snow (and avoid potential fines) has helped out a bit in the jobless sector, as noted in a story from Korea Times:
It didn't take long for Jin Tae-yong, who runs a fitness center in downtown Seoul, to find a part-timer to clean up the ice and slush piled up around his building from this week's record snowfall. He put up a posting on a job site and, within a day, had nearly 30 applicants calling in. [...]
Typical part-time jobs pay an average of 4,000 to 4,500 won per hour, but the snow jobs pay anywhere from 6,000 to 8,000 won, based on the listings posted in the past few days.

Ah, well. Hopefully, a little more than a month from now I'll be laying on a beach in the Gulf of Siam, thawing out.

1 comment:

Tanner Brown said...

You should come to L.A. It was sunny with a high of 75 today, as it has been more or less all month. I'm actually tweeting this naked from my rooftop mini-beach. Ok I'm not naked but I'm wearing a woman's G-string. Backwards.