This year hasn’t been the right year for traveling abroad. This is true for everyone everywhere in the world. One can travel for business, but for pleasure and family visits, then it is hard. In my case, I am used to taking some time off to visit family yearly. I had my vacation dates set aside well in advance. They were plans made pre-covid. So, of course, those plans were canceled once covid struck. As an English teacher and the faculty manager of two branches, I don’t have the time to travel to my family in the US. In order to spend two weeks with family, I would have to request four weeks off! The additional two weeks is due to the mandatory two week quarantine for those entering the country from abroad. So, I truly thought seeing my family this year was going to be impossible.Read More
Teachers Share their Experiences While Living Abroad!
I remember flying back to Seoul a mere few days before everything exploded. Right as masks sold out in each pharmacy I frantically biked to, right as numbers went from a few tens to hundreds in one day. I had just spent my term off in the southern hemisphere, trading Korean winters for the beach. Coming back to work felt like a rude awakening as the rest of the world seemed like they were still on vacation. Aside from China, South Korea was the most stressful place to be at the time, and I spent countless minutes refreshing my naver app to see the most up-to-date notifications on new cases. I panicked and dreamt of flying back to my family in the United States or to my friends in South Africa who I had just been with, knowing fully well those were just pipe dreams.Read More
I have been so lucky to live out COVID 2020 from the comfort and safe haven that is South Korea. Sadly, while I get to live my day to day life comfortably and with minimal interruptions to my life before COVID, there is one huge inconvenience for me. I cannot travel to the United States to visit my family. Well, I could, but with the two week quarantine in place upon arriving back to Korea, I would be asking for about a month off. It’s too long to go without working. I am so family-oriented though! Still, I love my life and teaching job in Korea, so I can’t just up and move back due to missing family. Thus, I have found that these three ways of staying connected to family have really helped me feel a lot better. I’m happy to share these ideas with you.Read More
All cultures have different wedding customs and it has been a great experience to attend a few Korean weddings during my time in Seoul. Korean weddings greatly differ from the weddings I’ve attended in the US. Also, to give some perspective, I come from Mexican heritage, so I have experience attending Mexican style weddings and American style weddings - both of which are very similar to each other not that I can compare the two with Korean weddings.Read More
Not long ago, I wrote about my experience teaching online classes. Now, it has been a little over a month that my school began offering offline classes again. So, we started offline classes again in May, but not fully. At that time, the situation was growing increasingly stable, so many parents felt like they could feel comfortable sending their kids back to the classroom. However, not all parents felt this same sentiment. In order to accommodate everyone, my school decided to open a combination of offline and online classes. Thus, currently, my co-workers and I have a mixed class schedule of offline and online classes and I don’t see this changing for the next two months - at the very least.Read More
Quarantine itself actually wasn’t as horrible as I had imagined. Is it boring at times? Yes, but you know what your hobbies are and what you like to do in your free time. So bring them!
It’s a great time to read, Netflix is accessible and you can start learning Korean. Working out is always an option (water bottles make great makeshift dumbbells), you can journal, do puzzles, listen to music, etc.Read More
I finally made it to Korea almost 24 hrs after leaving my house. That’s of course including getting to the airport and all of the waiting in between and before flights... but with the help of CDL, government and airport officials, I ended up exactly where I needed to be-- and you will too!
This was just my experience. You could have different hurdles, but based solely on what I have learned, I will also be sharing some useful tips.Read More
Living and working in Seoul, I am constantly flooded with questions and inquiries about the situation with COVID-19, and rightfully so. People are stressed, confused, concerned, anxious, or a mixture of all the above with a dash of existential doom. Friends and family are consistently surprised by my lack of news on the employment front, and that is all due to the way that Chungdahm has handled this pandemic.Read More
Going to a new country can be intimidating. There’re so many things to prepare before departure, and the added pandemic made things even more difficult. High death tolls back in the States, flights being cancelled, supplies difficult to come by. I was very stressed before coming to Korea. I was wondering if I would still be able to make it considering all that was going on in the world. I hope this article will answer some questions about what it was like arriving in Korea. The honest answer is it was perfectly fine.Read More
While in late February, the world may have looked down on Korea for being the first country outside of China to face a covid-19 outbreak, it didn’t take long for the world to see how the Korean government and people have handled dealing with this pandemic. Now, many world leaders from powerful countries around the world turn to South Korea for knowledge and supplies to overcome the outbreaks being faced in their homelands. My family no longer expresses concern for me being in Seoul, and much like I’ve heard from colleagues and fellow expats, they now advise me to stay in Korea. While I can go down a rather impressive list of reasons why I feel I am in the best country to live in during this pandemic, I will condense my list down to my top three main reasons.Read More