Living in Korea

If you asked me a few years ago if I would live in another country; I would have told you no. A few years ago, I was a wimp. I still kind of am now, but I've grown a little. I'm quite proud of myself really, especially when looking back at my high school and university days.

The first time I moved away from home was for university. I was a mess, I cried before I left, I didn't want to go; it was horrible. I was weird and mostly shy. I didn't really know how to talk to people, or "make friends". I did in the end obviously, but some led to being bossed about by people who thought they could control me because I was shy and did everything they said. 
After I started working for the zoo; I came out of my shell. I also met David at that time. 

Fast forward to now, I'm sitting in my apartment in Korea. KOREA! It still feels a bit surreal. Now, when I think about it, the thought of moving home sounds awful. I love Korea. I love what Korea has given me. So, here's what it's like living here. 

When I first moved, I stayed in a hotel for the first week. Due to the type of job I have (ESL teacher at a hagwon), I get a free apartment. No rent! My job is great, I work Monday-Friday, 5 hours each day and no more than 25 hours a week. I get a salary of about 1.5K a month. 

I've been here for about a year and a half now, and life is pretty comfortable. I have made some good friends here in Korea, and work with some great people who are all like family. 
I even got my Korean drivers license. I've never driven before, so learned everything in Korea, in Korean. 

So, now I can drive everywhere instead of relying on taxis and buses. Speaking of which, taxis are so cheap and buses run often. 

The food here is also great, but there is a lack of western food. Unless, I venture to Seoul. Even then, western food is pretty expensive in relation to Korean food. The price is probably the same as what we pay back home. 

It's really hard to explain how the English is here. Signs are mostly in English, some are the romanised versions of the Korean words. Not everyone speaks English. I've found that the majority don't. I've had to learn basic Korean to be able to get around. Which is fine, as I am in a non English speaking country. 

There are a lot of things which do annoy me though, as with my home country. Things like parking! People park anywhere. They park on corners or at intersections. They don't indicate or wait their turn.  No one yields at a roundabout. 
There are also no trash cans. Trash cans are scarce here.

Korean life is easy, and it's fairly relaxing. I do recommend people to visit, or even work here yourself. If you have a university degree, there are plenty of ESL jobs kicking about. There are however, a lot of shady jobs. Some which try to scam you our of money, or do things against the law.

Korea isn't a scary country like most people think. Before I moved, I had a lot of people tell me to be careful, Korea is dangerous because it's so close to the North...yadayada. I've even had someone comment on my blog about being stupid for going.

At the end of the day, Korea has been the best choice. I've grown a lot here and learned a lot of new things. I got over my anxiety (if you can call it that! Fear of talking to people..) by having to speak Korean a lot. I can see myself living here for a good few years.


Popular Posts