Saturday, August 14, 2010

Hello Korea!!

Interesting way of cleansing but it works! :)... Read about in 3rd paragraph
So, as most of you saw via Facebook... I made it to South Korea safe and sound. The trip over here was a little overwhelming and exhausting but overall it went really well! After my 13 and a half hour flight from Chicago to Seoul I got my 100 plus pounds of luggage and got a bus ticket to Gwangju and headed out. This 4 hour ride was interesting.... the driver made a stop about halfway through for people to get out, go to the bathroom, get food, etc. I had been sleeping the entire time so I was a little out of it. When the driver stopped I grabbed all my things, got off the bus and stood in the middle of this Korean shopping center confused as hell.... all I kept thinking was, "where the F am I and OMG no one speaks English, how do I get help?, Where do I go?" Finally a light bulb turned on.. DUH.. the bus ride is not over, WOW EMILIE! Got on the bus, continued sleeping and finally made it to the Gwangju bus station where my boss Michael Kim picked me up. Poor Michael, he dragged my heavy ass bags through the bus station and into a cab. I think his arms are still sore today!!

So Michael informed me of a few things that I was not aware of... I thought I was only going to be living in Gwangju for 2 weeks where I would do my training but the company wants me to live in Gwangju permanently.. hmm? The school/company that I work for (TN English) is run out of Gwangju and because of my qualifications the school wants to keep me here full time. I don't really have a say, so whatever.. it's just something new and different than what I had thought. It's really funny because my boss, as well as some of the other English teachers have gone on and on about how great it is to have a blonde haired, blue eyed, slim white girl with a teaching degree finally working for them. If they like me this much well damn.. all my teaching friends back in America would be treated like celebrities!!

So my apartment is SO cute and perfect. The building is in a great location near some shops and what not and the school that I will be teaching in is on the bottom level of my place.. Crazy huh!? I won't have to worry about transportation because all I need to do is hop on the elevator and head down a couple of floors. The weirdest thing about my apartment is the fact that there isn't a separate shower (the picture above kinda shows this).. let me explain.. in the bathroom, right above the sink is a show head that comes off if need be. The sink turns on the shower and you just shower openly next to the sink and toilet... no shower curtain. Lets just say, you should move the toilet paper and anything else you don't want to get wet if your taking a shower.

Being that last night was Friday, I figured I should go out. I went to a bar called "Bubble" with some people in my building. This was a really neat bar... great American music and lots of foreigners. I met some nice people from all over the world including some girls from Charlotte and Greensboro- small world! The Koreans are extremely friendly and helpful.. thank god because things don't always click right away. I wonder if the Koreans know about the whole blonde/slow thing. I doubt it, guess I can't use that as an excuse here. Here's the awesome part about going out here... no drinking age (unlike America, I heard that the younger people do not even care to drink) you can take drinks from bar to bar as well as in cabs, you can be as drunk as you want in public (not my style though) and the bars don't close till 7 a.m. I didn't even go out til 1:30 a.m. and we got home around 5... new and different! We went to an American style Korean restaurant after the bar called "Fish Grille". In Korean Culture, everyone is family.. so you share your meals. The table shared a deep fried hamburger roll and french fries. OMG, this was sooo good.

Today I slept till 5 p.m., showered and got ready (I caught my hairdryer on fire.. so much for that, dammit- its incredibly humid so I think fixing my hair is just pointless) and Michael took me to a store like a Costco/Walmart. I got the essentials and then he took me out for a nice traditional Korean meal. So.. me and chopsticks don't do well! I felt like a complete retard trying to eat but i'm learning. Dinner was very yummy but i'm thinking I will loose a lot of weight here. The portions are smaller, better for you, more filling and the chop sticks make it more difficult.

I start work/training on Monday. I am very excited to get back on a strict schedule. My ADHD is driving me crazy.. I need something to do! I can't wait to meet my students. I miss teaching and kids!! Sorry this post was like reading a novel but I am so excited and as you can see I have a lot to say. I will be in touch soon and let you know how work goes. :)

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