Friday, August 26, 2011

What an AdVeNTuRe!!!

The week is almost over for has been intense, overwhelming, exciting, nerve wrecking, and amusing to say the least!!! I started training on Monday 22nd and jumped right time to get your feet wet!  We start training at 8:30am everyday and have been getting out around 3:30 and back to the hotel around 4:30-5 everyday.  I have two sessions, which include training in a lower level of students in the am and a training for the much higher ESL students in the pm.  So my am and pm sessions are two extremes!

The first day of training the company was nice enough to have a bus take us over to the training center and to the medical center for our health exams. Orientation was in the am till about noon and around one we had to take our health exams.  At the health center I experienced my first encounter with Koreans that dont speak much English...and it was extremely hard to understand them when it came time to pee in a cup!  Lets just say I screwed it up and had to chug water in 15min in order to pee again.  After our exams we all were relieved to be released and go eat since we couldn't eat all day. But nobody was prepared for them to throw us in the deep end and take the subway back to our hotel.  Lets just say their subway map looks like ten of New York's subways all in one...really confusing but once navigated with the other trainees we figured it out! That was a test in its own!!

The last three days have been a blur and to say the least, Im ready to stop living out of my suitcases and get into my apartment.  I passed all my written test, YEA!!! Took only three tries on the grammar but that is under my belt now.  I have 'finals' tomorrow so one more written test in both sessions and our final Mock Teachings.  I have been getting lots of good feedback and just putting my best foot forward! After our finals tomorrow everyone will be distributed to their perspective schools/branches around 2:45p.  A van is supposed to be delivering me to my school or apartment, Im not sure which one but heard my school is only 5 min walk from the apartment, so either way good news!  I will be sane once I get acclimated to my own environment and settled in!... SO please forgive me if I have not responded to your emails or calls...dont take it personal its just been really busy since I stepped off the plane!  Next blog will be an update of my New, new was just getting used to using the subway system and the area here in Seoul.  But I am really EXCITED to move into my apartment and see my school!

I hope everyone is well in the states! I miss EVERYONE!! Please KIT with me and I promise I will eventually get back to you at my earliest. I also have a local SKYPE number for everyone in the states so you dont have to run up your bill on long distant charges.  If you want the number leave me a comment and I will drop it in a email! More pictures to come...stay tuned!! Bye for now!!

*oh check out my video: Some random street entertainment on the way to dinner...

Thursday, August 25, 2011

ROK pt. 1: Arriving in Seoul

Sorry all I am just figuring out this blog mess! For those not on FB or didnt get the link to personally view my first round of they are!!! You can scan over them with your mouse or you can click on 'view all images' to see a full screen view of my pics! Hope everyone is well in the states...more pics to come so stay tuned!!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

ARRIVED in ROK (Republic of Korea)

This is me landing on Korean soil!!....Yes all I made it safe and its been a whirlwind since I landed.  I arrived an hr early about 3pm on Sat 20th.  I was about a 16 hr flight with a layover in Chicago.  The flight was decent, I flew with Asiana Airlines and the stewardess were all very nice.  Once I landed all 4...yes 4 of my large bags arrived.  I got many looks as well as many comments from the Koreans at the airport.  Everyone thought I was in the!  NO...I just over pack and have always been like that.  But to say the least I have everything I need and am totally prepared.   A skycap at the airport was very nice and helped me load all my luggage on a cart and I headed out of customs.  From there I ran into about 5 other colleagues of mine on the bus to the Korean City Air Terminal.  The bus ride was about an hr from the Icheon Airport, and it had a flat screen tv playing KPOP (korean pop music).  I didnt really pay too much attention to the tv as I was in awe that I was in Korea so I was snapping pictures the entire way.  It is really green and there is lots of water, thank god it wasnt raining!  Once I arrived at the Air Terminal we had to call our director here in Korea and I had a hard time with the pay phone but figured it out after a few attempts and asking a Korean man next to me.  (he didnt understand a word I said but was more than willing to help me out!) Me and the other 5 colleagues piled into two taxi vans to head to the hotel.  We almost got into a few accidents, I felt like I was about to die at one point and our driver actually ran over a ladies foot.  (haha not funny but it was!) To say the least they drive really crazy and aggressive out here...there are no true rules on who has the right away and everyone seems to drive wherever their car fits.  The area that our hotel is in is a really busy part of town, it reminds me of NY, LA, and Vegas all in one.  They pile their trash on the street so you get a variety of smells as you walk, kimchi mixed with fish, mixed with garbage! lol  There arent many crosswalks so you have to watch out for the cars as they will run you over!  There are neon lights galore so everything is really lit up and bright at nighttime.  And the city is large and the buildings are tall and everything is really close together.  They seem to party and stay out all night...and that is a common thing here!  About four of us wandered after we got settled to find something to eat.  They were nice enough to give us a english menu after we starred at the korean menu for about 5 min.  We got lots of stares but I guess I am a MINORITY all over again.  They are very fashionable and the fashion is very eclectic and somewhat dated.  After eating and wandering around we all were very tired from a long flight and food in our bellies.  I laid down late and it was hard to force myself up this morning but have not felt the jet lag yet! I hope everyone is well in the States...I miss you ALL already!  I am about to meet up with some of the other recruits and hit a cafe to study for this intense week of training.  I have four test to pass on english grammar, reading, and culture.  I will keep you all abreast of my first week! Stay tuned....Ta Ta For Now!!

Me in KOREA!