Sunday, February 28, 2010

No More Jeonju University...ANDONG HERE WE COME!

Danny with our friends Monica and Garry from Scotland.

A traditional fan dance from the EPIK closing ceremony.

The view from our dorm room in Jeonju University.

Our orientation and Jeonju University is now over and Danny and I found out where we will finally be living...Andong. The last couple days of the training was a bit crazy because all of a sudden we found out the city we were living in, and what age of students we will be teaching. We are living in Andong, which is supposed to be the cultural capital of Korea. Danny and I are both teaching high school which was a bit of a shock, but also they are both ALL BOYS high schools. WHAT!? Everything just seems like a whirlwind, and we were sad to say goodbye to many of the new friends we had made because everyone was scattered to all corners of Korea.

Our friends Kevin and Nicole from Canada...we had an epic battle with them for which country is better...definitely the US...haha.

We were especially sad to say goodbye to our class leader, Mike, because he went out of his way to make us feel comfortable. We got to know Mike throughout the week and we were excited when we heard he was a Christian. He set up a worship service, so we got to meet other Christians in the EPIK program so hopefully we can keep in touch with them all throughout the year. To summarize: MIKE IS THE MAN and we consider him officially our first native Korean friend...oh yeah. Here's another Korean word for today: mash ee soy yo (delicious)

Right before we got on the bus to Andong, we got a picture with our class leader, Mike.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Jeonju... more like FUNju!

This is the official post to say that "Yes, we are alive." It seems as though people (mostly our parents) were worried we had died a horrible death eating some poisonous fish or being captured by North Korea. In fact, we are alive and well and have been in Korea for a little over a week. Here is a quick recap of what has happened so far...

-After staying in Seoul for 2 days we hopped on a bus for our 10 day training at Jeonju University.
-We are living in a college dorm that has 2 twin beds, heated floors, and staying on the 14th floor of a building with an unreliable elevator.
-We have been offered kimchi (fermented cabbage) at EVERY meal so far.
-We are taking 5, hour and a half classes a day to learn how to be great EPIK English teachers.
-We have made friends with some Canadians, Scotts, Englishman, Australians, Americans, and a Korean or two.
-We have never been so cold in our lives... but today was better ; )
-We have taught 9 people to play Farkle.
-We have accidentally eaten congealed duck's blood.
-We have attempted to learn the Korean alphabet.
-We have finally experienced the infamous Korean shower which basically means there is no shower curtain or distinction between it and the rest of the bathroom so EVERYTHING gets wet.

That is some of what has gone on so far, so it has been an eventful week. We really are enjoying this training and learning about how to be teachers. We have become friends with some great people and that makes home not seem so far away. It's fun to talk about the differences in culture and Dad you would be proud that we hang out with a true kilt-wearing Scottsman! This Thursday we find out finally where we will be living and teaching, so we are anxious to see what will happen and what our apartment and hometown will be like. Besides that, things are great and life continues to be interesting and a bit confusing here in Korea. And here's a Korean word for the day so you too can learn with us: sun sang neem = teacher.

Danny on the bus to EPIK training in Jeonju

Danny sitting on the heated floor to warm his freezing bones

Lanterns outside a restaurant in Jeonju

Wearing Korean monkey and grandmother masks...yikes.

Learning to play a Korean drum on a field trip!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Welp, we're finally here!

After much preparation and nearly 6 months of vacation, we have finally arrived in South Korea. Now many of you might be thinking: "What are you doing in Korea?" That is a great question that we are still asking ourselves (wink). Even though I had imagined myself living in a warmer, more tropical place like South America, somehow Danny and I ended up here where kimchi (fermented cabbage) is a staple and neither of us can speak or read the language. We'll be teaching English in a public school somewhere in S. Korea for a year and tomorrow we officially start our new jobs. We are both excited, but it still feels like we are just going on vacation, not moving.

We flew with four, fifty pound bags and two carryon suitcases which contained not only clothes but sheets, kitchen knives, a year supply of deoderant, a pound of taco seasoning, and a lot more. This blog is here to document our adventure together, and we hope you have fun reading it! Goodbye America...Hello Korea!

The view from our Hotel of central Seoul.

The Seoul fish market where you can buy and eat fresh fish. The food is so fresh that squid will still suction to your tongue as you chew. Yikes.

Danny and his friend from CSU, JP. JP took us around Seoul our first day and gave us a great tour of local life in Seoul.