I’m currently deskwarming, snuggled under a blanket and sitting on a USB heat pad for two hours with not too much I need to do. It’s gotten a lot colder rather quickly. Coming from California, I’ve never had to live in such temperatures (it’s already getting below freezing at night…) and it’s not even fully winter yet. Hopefully I’ll survive…
This month is a lot different from my first month of random days off sprinkled throughout. I have pretty much no days or classes off so it’s a regular teaching schedule.
My Tuesday classes are nightmare fifth graders who make me want to cuddle up and go back home while the rest of my week is fantastic and makes me want to stay longer. Luckily my Wednesdays have been especially good to make me feel better faster.
Anyway, let’s back track to orientation now, shall we?
As I mentioned before, September intake is interesting in that we get thrown into our schools immediately without an orientation. We have to learn the ropes quickly on our own and we are asked to join October intake in their orientation.
The Daejeon September intake ladies all got together for the first time since we were shuttled from Incheon Airport to Daejeon. We met at Daejeon Station to take the KTX into Seoul. The KTX is a short 50-minute ride from Daejeon to Seoul. Rachel was in the same car as me and we were chatting the whole way and before we knew it, we were in Seoul!
Navigating to NIIED was easy enough, but the metro is much more crowded than in Daejeon (especially since we had a week’s worth of luggage with us). Hye Yeon ended up as our roommate and all the Daejeon September girls were placed on the same floor next to each other :)
I don’t want to bore everyone with the everyday schedule, but basically we were sitting in lectures all day. We were fed delicious noms in the cafeteria for every meal and I’m sure I gained plenty of weight from sitting and eating all day for a week. I have a conspiracy that they were purposefully fattening us up for the coming winter days.
I personally thought that all the lectures were great and informative and I took away something from each one. All the lecturers were approachable too and gave out contact info in case we wanted to keep in touch for the future.
Fun things about orientation:
1. Meeting more EPIKers!
It’s nice to make new friends, some who are BRAND new to Korea, some who were in the same boat as me and around for a month, and even a few who have been around for several years! Everyone has their own interesting backgrounds and stories and honestly, it felt a little like I was in my first days of college again. Making friends across Korea has an additional bonus for traveling purposes. :>
Some of the friendly faces I met at orientation
2. Taekwondo class/performance
I’ll need to upload my videos at some point, but opening ceremony performance was amazing. They even threw a little fabulous k-pop dancing in there, of course. The class was a lot of fun. The main instructor was fantastic and the other instructors were quite cute :b We got to break our own boards as well!
3. Drumming class/performance
While most people were in language classes, a handful of us were lucky enough to be placed in the drumming class. I got to learn janggu and we learned in the middle of the class that we would be performing at closing ceremony. Everyone in this class was not only super talented, but also dedicated. We took some extra time outside of class to prep for our performance together.
Prepped for the performance!
Here’s the video of the performance my friend filmed! :>
4. Free time
We took what time we had off for breaks/evenings to walk around Seoul. We had a strict curfew of midnight, but that still left plenty of time for walking around, getting some chicken and beer, etc.
Met Hye Yeon’s friends from college and we took some nice photo booth pictures.
The photo booth editor also warned us, “Touch me softly” ;D
Doing cheap masks we bought for roommate bonding time.
Finding the coolest bar in Seoul with shelves and shelves of amazing records with great company :)
I ended the week-long break from Daejeon by seeing my friend who works in a hagwon in Seoul and then seeing family in Ansan. I cannot express how great it felt to finally get back home to Daejeon though. :>
(I think I started this post about a month ago and just finished…)
Yes, I need to update like mad. I will, eventually. Maybe.
But right now, the weather is a bit gloomy or maybe it’s just because I’m in a bit of a gloomy mood. But I’ll be deskwarming all day, today and tomorrow (aside from my two afterschool 1st grade classes today) because my kiddos are taking finals. I can “take a rest” as the Konglish phrase goes.
Looking forward to warm vacation days in Thailand~