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I bet you think this BLOG is about you!, Alabama, United States
I'm an extroverted flame dame with a shiny nice girl exterior. Commonly Refered to as the resident Attention Whore. My main goal in life is to become famous and I'd appreciate it if you'd watch me do me....

Friday, May 2, 2008

The Best Motivation...


Side Note in My Heart: 2 years ago I took to running on the track almost daily. Up until that point i hated and resisted all types of exercise. I can't believe I actually enjoyed running. Of course now I realize that my previous attempts at healthy and exercise only included myself. The moment that I had a partner, another driving force, some one to talk to, complain about, run faster than... was the moment became FUN to RUN! Even between the best of friends, there's always the competition factor. i don't think it's bad- it's actually a healthy way to motivate. Well, when that was taken away I continued to run for a while, but the difference was noticeable and the act actually sadden me- so i quit.

So Boys & Girls, the morale of the story? Competition is MY MOJO!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Brand New Day!

So this is what it feels like to get loosed! I stayed up 48 hours straight trying to finish research papers for 3 graduate courses. I'm all done, so now I've just gotta wait for the grades to roll in. Please Pray for My Miracle. I'm ever more excited about Korea- as usual. My best friend has caught the vibe as well. At any given moment in a day I'm thinking about fast forwarding one month- I'll be Gone! After the wave of Sunshine hits me I think about her and realize we both have Youngju on the Brain..


Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Bursting With Joy

I feel like I'm so lucky! The opportunity to venture to Korea is like a step toward greatness for me.. a leap in the right direction. I've known for a long time that the whole 9-5 job, marriage, 2.5 kids and a dog life wasn't for me. I've always wanted to be a happy go lucky traveling free spirit. What better way to accomplish this than to travel and teach and learn about new and exotic places. I think it's more than a fair trade. The really awesome part is that I have a partner in crime to travel with and to share all my experiences with. We're alot alike and still very different. I know it's going to be a blast I just wish i was leaving today!

I have been searching frantically for ESL blogs from people in Gyeongju. I can't find any info. I was thinking it was extreme country living but a post from a fellow expat/reader assures me that there is a city-fied part to Gyeongju. It feels great to know that a a good drink and a big dance floor aren't ever going to be too far away.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Documents-Faster than a speeding bullet!

I'm excited to say that my documents reached Korea safely! And it only took 2 days! So now I can twiddle my thumbs more agitatedly as I wait for my Visa number to issued to me by email. I hate the waiting game. Incidentally, a few more recruiters have contacted me with some lucrative job offers. I'm sticking to my guns. I'll be placed at a public school where I work 8-4 and it's Gyeongju! It a tourist attraction in korea that's reknown for it's beauty and splendor. It helps that the big city of Busan and a really posh beach is kinda close to me too!!!!!!!! I've decided to start getting rid of junk this weekend. For all who know me- you know I love my JUNK. It'll be tough but I can't procrastinate or I'll leave for Korea with a bunch of unsettled affairs.

Love Andrea

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Separation Anxiety

Separation Anxiety is lurking in the hearts of all my loved ones. I'm already getting comments saying that i will be missed dearly and I've still got a month left in the USA. It's hard thinking about leaving friends and significant others behind but the excitement that this opportunity brings is overwhelming. I can not be thwarted!

Conditional Love- Korea

Salutations! This is the start of a beautiful relationship. I'm Andrea and I want to go to Korea more than I want to take my next few breaths. I've been obsessed with the Korean culture since I was little. ( My mother was military and did a 2 year stint in Seoul) I've been fixated ever since. The ESL program EPIK has allowed me the opportunity to visit Korea for a whole year. The kicker is that they will pay me (handsomely) to do so. So I'm on my way hopefully in June of this year. This blog will serve as a pass time hobby and documentary of my life in Korea from Conception to Finale.

To even begin to think about Teaching English in Korea there are a few requirements:

Be a citizen of one of the 6 designated English speaking countries: Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, or the United States of America
Hold at least a Bachelor's degree
Be mentally and physically healthy
Possess a good command of the English language
Have desire and ability to adapt to living in Korea
Have a 4 year Degree
No Criminal record

Since I had all those bases covered I decided to try to enlist the help of a recruiter. I post my contact information and resume on several website. was the most helpful and very insightful website concerning the topics of ESL. I got a few responses for job offers but they were just inquiries. I began to search for blog of other ESL hopefuls that had gone before me and found that it's often hard to place African American teachers in Korea. I don't think it has anything to do with racism really; it more that Koreans associate English language with Caucasians. At long last I received a serious job offer fro Gyeongju the old capital of Shilla! And what luck- they actually wanted Black teachers! At this point my Best friend got offered a job at the same school. So if all goes well we'll begin a career of backpacking across the world under the guise of English teachers.

I really wanted to go to a public school because there seems to be less trouble and more security in working for public schools versus Hagwons (private institutions). I've read horror stories about Hagwons that forget to pay you, over work you, and scam you out of your 1 year completion bonus.

Here is the description of our job offer:
#A. Elementary School in Yeongju
Location: Yeongju city, Gyeongbuk province
Distance: 3 hours from Seoul
- Start Date: April~ May~June
- Salary: 2.2~2.6M/month (22h/week), or 2.3~2.7M/month (25h/week)
- Overtime: 20,000won/h
- Bonus information: 1 month salary at the completion of 1 year
- Working hours: 22hours/week or 25hours/week
- Working time: 8:30am ~5:30pm (M ~ F)
- Teaching level: Elementary
- Vacation: 2weeks (Could be more since it is up to principal)
- Housing: Single Furnished (10 mins by walking)
- Airfare round trip, Health insurance, National Pension Plan
- Number of position: 6
- Note:
My salary will be 2.1 -2.3 about 2100-2300 USD permonth plus an extra 300 b/c Gyeonju is considered a rural area. I'd love to live in a big city but it's more expensive. Gyeongju appealed to me b/c it's close to the beach and close to Busan. Busan is a big city with a miltary base (my brothe ris stationed there).

Our recruiters name is Amy, She is very informative and sweet and prompt with emails. Gotta love that. She began to guide us through the hellish process called OBTAINING DOCUMENTS.

This a list of the DOCUMENTS you must obtain:
* Original College Diploma- You'll get it back!
*Signed contract -must be in Korean and English
* 2 Sealed transcripts from your university-
* Passport copy- get you passport done early it's about $100USD
* 4 passport sized Color photos-
* Criminal Back ground check- go to your local police dept. and ask for one it's free. Then get it notarized. Then send it to your nearest Apostillization Office with the appropriate amount of $$ in a money order.

You'll be sending all these things to your recruiter ( air mail @ about $40 and 7 days to get there) - who gives them to your employer- who then submits them to the government so they can kick out your Visa number. You'll then be able to take you passport to a Korean Consulate near you to have the visa attached to the passport. This might take a while and sometimes it involves you having an interview with the Consulate. Make sure you know a few facts about where you're going, why you want to be there, and the president of Korea's name.

This is the point I'm at now. I sent all my documents and now I'm twiddling my thumbs and obsessing about packing enough goodies for a year into 2 suitcases and paying for the flight. You pay for your own flight ( about 800-1000 usd) and the school reimburses you in 2 weeks. I have to say that I'm very excited.