If you have lived in Korea you would have heard of G-market as Koreans seem to love online auction sites.
If you haven't lived in Korea, well G-market is a little bit like E-bay or Trade me at home in New Zealand.
It's actually like Trade me on acid, hundred or possibly thousand's of Korean retailers are on G-market selling everything you could imagine from furniture to clothing to make up to food and more. It seems like hundred's of images flash up at you on any given page saying - buy! buy! buy!
Until recently, I had only really used G-market when our friends Conor and Sue came to stay from the UK and we needed to buy a fold out couch. However, when I bought that my co-teacher Jiyoun helped me through the whole process. You see, even though G-market has an English site a lot of the site is still in Hanguel.
I can't really read Hanguel, but I can work things out with the help of my guide book.
My first attempts at G-market (by myself) involved me sitting over our home computer, guide book in hand trying to work out what things said. I also had Rich on hand for additional help (as he can read Hanguel).
I rember one Sunday night we muddled through G-market, trying to find a jacket for me, we finally found one and had worked out the colour and size and everything else. However, when we clicked on the international credit card option it wouldn't accept my credit card or Rich's! (which is crazy because I've used mine on all kinds of international clothing sites over the years!).
At this stage, I was ready to give up on G-market, it was "just too hard". However, after talking to my friend Dani who loves G-market I decided to give it another go.
There were two reasons, one she told me about google crome which will translate a lot more of the site into English making it much easier to buy things and secondly she told me you can set up a G-market account in your name and transfer money over to that account using a Korean ATM.
I took her advice as I really wanted a summer bolero, a lot of my dresses have short sleeves or no sleeves which isn't a good look for teaching.
Much to my surprise, yesterday when I got home my bolero was there and it fits well and it only cost KRW10,000 (about $12 NZ) and my co-teachers today were very impressed!
I have also ordered some shoes, because it's very hard to get shoes that fit westerners here, I never thought I had big feet (US size 9) but here finding nice shoes is either impossible or extremely expensive!
I have now bought two pairs of shoes for my "big size-ee" feet - let's hope they turn up today (it's usually overnight delivery). I'll let you all know how it works out.
G-market and I are still having a few trust issues, I can admit it. But if the shoes are delivered on time I think that maybe we can work something out.