Thursday, November 30, 2006

Friday, November 17

I leave Bozeman at 6:10am on Friday and will arrive in Seoul, S. Korea at 6:35pm on Saturday. I retract anything I previously said about Delta because my SkyMiles status did bump me up to first class for the plane ride from Salt Lake to LAX. Unfrotunately, I slept most of the flight so didn't get to enjoy much first class status. Maybe it is just easier to sleep in first class.

From LAX it was a 12.5 hour flight. A short nap, three in-flight movies, a newspaper, a book, two meals and a video led in seat workout and we began our decent into Seoul.

I was met at the airport by my recruiter and the vice principal of the school. He brought me to my new apartment in Gimpo (a suburb of Seoul). It was a very spacious apartment and I'll share it with two flat mates (yes Marie, I have a flat!). One is from Wisconsin and the other is from West Virginia. They were waiting for my arrival to go out to dinner so I obliged them and we went.

I experienced my fist Korean meal. The shoe removal, chopstick using, cook your own food experience and everything. Very spicy, but very good. And I had my first taste of kimchi!

Bon Voyage!

I have a lot to catch up on! It took the past two weeks to get the internet straightened out in our apartment and I was fighting six other teachers for the use of two computers at school. Needless to say blogging didn't happen.

As promised I'll bring everyone up to speed on my last night in the states. It was a tearful day filled with emotional goodbyes but the party must go on. I flew out of Bozeman, Mont. and my friends threw me a final get-together held at The Bay. I was blown away by the nice invitations to the party and by the turnout of friends. Twenty in all showed up for dinner!

After diner we went out for drinks and kareoke.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

It's time to celebrate!

Bags are being packed!

So the phone call from my recruiter/coordinator is one to remind me that it is winter in Korea and that I might want to bring some warm clothes. Thank goodness for the helpful reminder.

The last couple of weeks have been great to catch up with friends. Here are a couple of party photos...more to come.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Let the countdown begin!
My airline tickets arrived via snail mail today and my passport freshly stamped with a Korean visa the day before. It came with this excellent map of S. Korea with details of the major metropolitan areas.

I have already experienced my first challenge of the language barrier. While working with the travel agent, he (a Korean based out of Chicago) was going to email me my flight itinerary. I started to spell out my email address over the phone. asdf_ghkl@ When I got to the 'underscore' I was at a loss. It was a word unfamiliar to him and I don't think Yahoo would have recognized the symbol spelled out. We agreed on snail mail and after verbal confirmation he dropped my tickets off with the U.S. Postal Service. On the bright side, I did get signed up for the Asiana Airlines frequent flyer program. If Delta insists on messing with the frequent flyer program then I'll just switch to Asiana.

The lady at the Korean Consulate in Seattle also had less than perfect English but the language barrier there was actually a benefit as she sent me the map (see above) free of charge.

Don't misunderstand me...the language barrier is mostly my responsibility and so I've invested in a book and language tapes.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Welcome to a one year adventure to Korea. I was recently hired to teach English as a second language at a Korean language institute just outside of Seoul, South Korea. This blog will chronicle my adventures in Korea.