…Korea so far…yeah..
The most difficult things I have encountered so far were getting trash bags right, getting a fitted mattress for my bed, and getting a computer cord. The things yet to come? Figuring out how the bus system works, getting online banking when I get my Alien Registration Card, and learning some Korean. I want to learn the alphabet first, and I hope from there that I will get around just a little easier.
I will have 6th grade, 4th grade, and 3rd grade students. Each class is about 40-45 minutes, and I have at least 4 classes every day. On Fridays, I have 5. Every two weeks, I was told I will have to do some kind of English club after school on Fridays. I work 8:30-4:30 every day, and I’m not supposed to work any weekend unless it is something important. It is about 20-25 minutes of walking from my apartment to my school. As I said above, I haven’t figured out the bus system yet, but it would cut my commute down somewhat.
I really like my apartment. The table is pretty decent but the chairs are really worn down and not in the best shape. I have a couch, but it’s an awkward two-seater. When I have more money I might look into buying a new couch, depending on the cost. Not sure how I will get rid of the old one, though. Unfortunately, there was no TV in here when I moved in, so I have to wait for that. The first day I was out of the hotel, my co-teacher took me to apply for my Alien Registration card. That was September 6th, and it won’t be until September 26th at the earliest before I can get internet banking and stuff squared away….such a long wait!
There have been times where I think it is funny to be one non-asian person in a crowd of Koreans, but sometimes it is lonely. I miss my friend back home, but not that I want to go home…I want to drag them here for my own selfish comfort 😛
Right now it is the Chuseok holiday, which is a National Holiday (think Korean Thanksgiving) on Monday and Tuesday. I get Wednesday and Thursday off because of the school. It’s great and all, but after I finished unpacking I began to feel lonely. This is a time when most Koreans visit their families in whatever part of the country they came from. Incheon is not empty by any means, but the two nice teachers (not my co-teachers) that I met are both out of town right now. I like the people I met at orientation, but most of them like to go out and drink or go clubbing and then drink. Nothing against them, but that has never been something I have felt compelled to do, ever. I am not impressed when someone can drink their weight in alcohol. What I really want are some travel buddies, or people to go to bookstores with and coffee shops. I’m an idealist in some ways, because the international lifestyle attracts a lot of social people who like clubbing and drinking. It’s how they get to know people. Well, not me anyway 🙂 I have started to meet people though, and I would rather have a few close friends than 70 semi-close party friends.
I have never been a teacher before, so making this fun and interesting for the students will be really tough and nervewracking. The cool part, though, is that if a lesson doesn’t work for the first day, I can change it before the next day’s class of whatever grade it is, and experience some trial and error. It <i>doesn’t</i> have to be perfect. No one has explicitly said that to me, but I get the vibe that if I try my best at this, I will be doing all right. My biggest beef is that my main co-teacher hasn’t been very much help to me. I will be persistent, but she’s not very willing to help. Fortunately, I have help in other places, but it <i>is</i> my main co-teacher’s job to help me get settled in, to the best of her ability.
I’m not the best at interior decorating…at all. Once my TV comes in, I’m going to try and get suggestions for ways to spice up the place. I hope someone might have some good ideas 🙂