When I first moved to Korea back in May 2012, I was incredibly happy with my apartment at the Bukbu side of town. Here in Pohang, the city is divided into two main sections, Bukbu (south) and Namgu (north) with a Chungdahm location in both places. My first three months in Korea was at the Bukbu branch and so, my first apartment was also in Bukbu. Man oh man, did I love that apartment! It came with a flat screen tv, new washer, laundry room, decent-size kitchen, which came with a pantry. In addition, the tile behind the sink was my favorite color, green. I felt pretty lucky as I’d also inherited a microwave, laundry basket and slippers. :-)
Later in August, I found out I’d be moving to E-dong and that I’d be working at the Nam-gu office instead. I was unsure of what to expect as I was still relatively new to Korea and was still adjusting. So, while the move wasn’t something I wanted, I decided to make the most of my new but smaller and older apartment by redecorating. It turned out pretty well, see here for a look at my last apartment. In my building, some apartments are slightly bigger than others. So, a few months later, after getting Choco, a three year old poodle, I decided that I needed something bigger. I’ve been in a slightly larger apartment since October 2012 and it is co-zy! For the same rent, I cannot complain one bit.
With more space in my apartment, I divided the space into sections. I find that in doing so, the room is more functional. Chances are, you’ll end up with a studio apartment (one large room with separate bathroom and kitchen. Your apartment should include a bed, closet, tv and washing machine and refrigerator. Consider yourself lucky if you also get a desk, microwave, and any other furnishings. Believe it or not, I have a library, office, gym, and dressing room worked into my apartment while teaching in Korea. Take a look!
The Library. My bookcase is filled with remnants of home and Korea. I bought with me a few books from the states and it’s nice sometimes to take in a read. I’ve also gotten a few knick knacks from Korea while visiting other cities. I also have a few DVD's I bought with me from the states; my favorites of course.
The Office. A home for my laptop and paperwork, my office is the most frequently used place in my apartment. I was lucky to get a desk with my place, but bought two lamps from a teacher who was heading back to the states. That’s pretty much the story of how I furnished my apartment in Korea. Having a desk is a necessity for me as I like to keep track of everything I do and it's a great place to store things like important documents.
The Gym. Yoga mats and weights are all the furnishings I need for my gym. On mornings before teaching English, I can usually get in an hour workout with yoga and if I’m feeling good, I go on to do some calisthenics. It’s great to have the equipment at your apartment as long as you also have the mojo. LOL I'm pretty good with downloading workouts to my computer and then exercising along the video. Lately, I've been getting into Ashanta Yoga. It's great!
The Dressing Room. This is just my closet with my clothes and of course a mirror to check myself out before I leave the house to go my class to teach English. As you can see, I like order. I use my suitcases to store out of season clothes. As the weather gets warmer in Korea, I'll swap out my winter wear for summer gear. I can't wait for summer to get here already!
The Dining Area. Truth be told, I rarely eat at this table. I have one that's closer to the floor and that the one I usually eat at. It is nice to know this table is there, in case I need it!
Whatever you decide to do with your apartment, it’s yours for a year, so make the most of it! Most teachers are happy with their apartments and find that even though it's small, it's enough for one person. In case you'll be coming to Korea as a couple, a larger apartment will be provided for you. Go on, start your application today!
Nailah Rivers was born in Trinidad and Tobago. She moved to the United States with her family at the age of seven. She graduated Rutgers University in 2011 with a degree in psychology. Her sophomore year in college, she knew for sure that she would pursue a teaching career with a focus on elementary school. After a risky move to Miami, Florida in 2011, Nailah decided to take a chance and apply to teach English in South Korea with Chungdahm Learning. She is currently teaching in Pohang, South Korea and is having a good time teaching and learning. Follow her blog to get the inside scoop on teaching abroad.Follow Nailah on Pintrest!