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I’m not very good at maintaining a blog, but I want to keep people updated on what I’m doing when I get to Korea. I started the process of applying for a teaching job overseas in September 2009. I decided I wanted to go to Korea so I went through ASK Now since one of my friends was applying through their website. I turned in my application for EPIK in September and had my interview in October. Once I got confirmation that I passed my interview, I was asked to submit the required documents: copy of diploma, criminal background check, transcript, etc. But, it took me a while to get my documents ready and I finally sent my application package at the end of November. Then the waiting period began…

While I was waiting for my contract, I looked for TEFL/TESOL/TESL courses. I definitely preferred a live, in-person course over online lessons. Most of the programs I found were too expensive and took 3-6 months to complete. Luckily, I found a company called LCC Teach that offered weekend courses in my area and I was able to complete my TESL certification courses by the end of January. That sounded a lot like a testimonial for some reason.

I finally received my EPIK contract and Notice of Appointment in mid-January. I know I’ll be somewhere in Daegu but I won’t find out which school(s) or which grades until I arrive for orientation. I got my visa and booked my flight soon after. Now, most of the paperwork is set. After such a long and confusing process, I thought I could relax because the hard part was finally over, I got the job. Nope. It’s just begun!

My least favorite part of traveling is packing. I like to think that I am a light packer. I usually am when it comes to weekend trips or other short trips. But when I pack for long trips I tend to overpack trying to prepare for anything. I have too many clothes and cosmetic products that I want to take with me too. I think I’m pretty good at packing things like cosmetics, liquids, and fragile items though. I’m just having a hard time finding all my stuff. Realistically, I have 10 days to pack. Sounds like a lot of time, but I’ve been putting off preparing my things because a lot of my stuff is in random places and packed in various boxes. Since moving back home from college, I’ve been sorting through 5 years worth of stuff and trying to collect the things I want to take with me. At this moment, I still have no idea which suitcases I’m using. I am pretty sure I’ll have a hard time lugging them around and I will hate my life until I reach my final destination. Should keep me from packing too much…

Some other things I’m not yet sure about (but should’ve thought of months ago):

  • Tax Exemption – Should I pay Korean taxes or fill out an IRS form to be exempt from paying Korean taxes and pay US taxes when I get back?
  • Travel Insurance – Should I get it? I won’t be able to use my medical benefits until the end of March when I get my resident card. So I won’t be covered until then. Well, I’m not even covered right now! No health insurance, surprise surprise.
  • Grammar Books – I have no money. No time to order the grammar books either. But I definitely want them…
  • Gifts – for my co-teacher(s) and director(s). I don’t even know how many to get, if they’re men or women. I can’t think of anything good right now. Something from California…

That’s all I can write about for now. I should go to sleep. I’m visiting the LBC tomorrow for some Roscoe’s and a haircut.

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