Tuesday, February 24, 2009

"So why are you leaving to Korea?"

I'll be open and honest here.

I was born in Vancouver, but raised in Toronto my entire life. I have been to various parts of Canada, but I have never exited the Toronto bubble. Fast forward and I am 23 now. I haven't even stepped into the US yet. As my recruiter Katelyn told me, "For your first time leaving Canada, you're going really far away. Like... really far away.... and for a long time." [add awkward pause here] That's when I had the biggest grin on my face, because it was exactly what I wanted for myself.

Go big or go home.

I applied to the public school system, S.M.O.E. (Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education), with the intentions of teaching in Seoul, Korea. This city is the 7th largest city in the world, populated with approximately 10 million humans.

An old Korean saying advises, "If you have a horse, send it to Jeju Island; if you have a son, send him to Seoul." Seoul is swarming with thousands of students attending its 44 universities, 12 colleges, and controls its most major enterprises in the commercial, financial, and governmental areas. So sending a son to Seoul gives him the most opportunities. [my mom and dad shrugged when I said I was going to Korea, I think this was a sign]

Some honest questions/future blog ideas I will talk about are:
1) Culture shock, being zapped
2) How are the children!! =) The lovely children, are kids REALLY the same everywhere?
3) Food.
4) Who are the teachers?
5) How will people deal with me being Asian, but westernized and non-korean?
6) Misc. + more to come

I will be leaving Toronto on Thursday, February 26th, at 7:45PM, and arriving in Seoul (Incheon International Airport) on Saturday, February 28th at 7AM.

And so the adventure begins....


  1. Wow, never been to the US? That's worse than me!

    Good luck! :D

  2. Yeap, I've been stuck in the Canuck border for too long.

  3. Hey Alex,

    Awesome that you're blogging about your experiences abroad! I'm envious of you in escaping the Toronto bubble.. another 3 months and I'm going on my adventure! haha

    I wanted to do the JET Programme but missed the deadline... sooo pissed. oh well. shit happens.

    Blog often, as I'm one sad mofo and want to live vicariously through your experiences. heh

    One thing about blogging though.. migrate to Wordpress! Blogspot is hideous! :)

  4. What adventure r u going on Will?

    One of my friends from the trip went through the JET program, and he said that you have to do that or nothing else for teaching in Japan.

  5. I'm going out west for a friend's wedding in vancouver - gonna kick it there for a few weeks then make my way down California and maybe Mexico - time permitting.