At Home in Korea

Hello friends, family, strangers!

I have made it to my new home in Korea, in a nice little town called Taebaek. It’s about the size of my hometown, Aurora, with 50,000 residents. It’s got the perfect balance of small-town feel and nature, while still having access to everything we need including a train to Seoul! Taebaek isLocated in the province of Gangwon-do, in the Northeastern part of South Korea. I chose this province because of its renowned hiking, camping, nature, and other outdoor activities, and because it is an agricultural area of Korea. For those strangers who have stumbled upon this blog, I did my thesis research on farming in the Far North of Canada and hope to become a market gardener, so picking an agricultural region made sense for me.

I met my co-teacher SJ on Friday, which gave me a chance to learn a little more about my school. It turns out that I’ll only be teaching at one school (I expected upwards of three) and I’m only teaching grade five. I’m really looking forward to meeting my new students and sharing my language with them!

Up until now, I’ve been in Busan at the EPIK orientation. We had a wild week of lectures, cultural experiences, delicious meals, and lots of fun time getting to know all the other EPIK teachers over Soju and Norabong. I was sad to depart from my new quick friends, but I’m sure we’ll all be meeting up around the country over the next few months.

Now in Taebaek, I’m settling into my amazing apartment, getting to know the community of foreign teachers here–there are a couple of other folks from Toronto, as well as from the US, Β UK, and other parts of Canada. I can’t wait to see what’s next! I’m currently in a coffee shop enjoying some Americano, as well as the pastries that the man working here keeps bringing me. He started speaking to me and I instinctively answered in Spanish as is my reaction when I know I need to speak a

language other than English… I’ll need to work on that.

Here’s a video of my exploring my new apartment!

And now some pictures to show what I’m up to!

Albino dino makes it to Busan!

Elizabeth and I at Busan University of Foreign Studies.

New friends! Out for Soju with Elizabeth, Alice, and Alyssa.

Socialites.

Bingsoo… one of my favourite Korean desserts.

More new friends!

Kim and I preparing for our lesson plan demo.

Gorgeous view from Busan University.

Beautiful traditional Korean performance at the Gugak centre in Busan

Last moments together with EPIK friends before we head to our communities

My new favourite coffee shop in Taebaek. Feels just like Canada! I’m with Kayla, one of the other Waygookins in town! (Waygookin being the Korean word for “foreigner.”)

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