Down in Daejeon


Well, it's been almost a week since my last post. I've been sans internet since Friday, so haven't had any way 'til now to post updates.

Thursday immediately following training I had to return to the National Medical Center for them to re-run some tests on me. Apparently there were a few "abnormalities" in the first set of blood work that they ran. Other than my bilirubin levels being high (which they have been for years), this time everything came back fine. Apparently the slight sinus infection I'd had when coming over caused my white blood counts to be higher than normal so they were double checking. The first time, Chung Dahm paid for the medical visit for me. This time, I had to pay out of my pocket for the entire thing... a whopping 14,300 KW (or roughly $11). While there is a lot of debate in the U.S. right now over the value of socialized healthcare, ya' gotta admit that ain't bad for a doctor's visit complete with lab work.

Another girl in our group was not quite as lucky as me. During the chest x-rays they found what appears to be a growth of some kind near her heart, so they will be doing a CT scan (cost for that will be $160). NOT a good way to start off your first week in a foreign country.

Friday morning, we brought all our bags to the training center and left immediately following training to go to our various locations. There will be 3 of us who went through training at the same time (2 from my class and 1 from another) who will all be teaching at the same school in Daejeon. The Chung Dahm driver took us and all our luggage to the bus station and helped us get tickets to start our 2 hour journey.

When we arrived in Daejeon, a Chung Dahm van was waiting for us at the bus stop-- which was literally just stopping in the road and letting people off. We had tons of luggage under the van, so we all scrambled to get get it unloaded, with traffic backing up behind the bus. Just as soon as we got everything out from under the bus, the driver took off... just as I was realizing that my backpack with my laptop and all my documents except my passport were still above my seat inside the bus. After a few minutes of scrambling around in total panic, we found a "call driver" who was willing to chase the bus down to the next stop (aka next town) and retrieve my backpack. I only had to pay him 15,000 KW ($12) so I was MORE than glad to do so. That could have been a BAD situation.

While we were waiting for the driver to get back with my backpack, the Chung Dahm van went ahead and took the 3 of us to our respective apartments. (They're all just a few blocks from each other.) I absolutely LOVE the view from mine! I'm on the 15th floor with a balcony overlooking the city and the surrounding mountains.




The twin buildings you see in this picture are city hall, which is only about a block from me:


My camera batteries died before I could takes of the apartment itself, but I'll post some in the next day or two.

After dropping our luggage off at our respective apartments (and getting my backpack back) we went to the school to meet with the Facility Manager and Head Instructors. Everyone seems to be really nice and helpful.

By the time we met them it was almost 10:30 and the teachers were all finishing up for the day. They had already planned to go out as a group to eat "dak galbi" so we were invited along. Dak galbi is chicken in a spicy sauce grilled up with some different vegetables.


It's one of the many Korean meals where the food is cooked at the table... in fact the grills are built into the tables in many korean restaurants. Most Korean meals are actually intended as a communal event, with there being one main dish (such as the dak galbi) from which everyone serves themself. BTW... gotta love the polka-dotted aprons the restaurant gave everyone to wear!

By the time we were finished with dinner it was after midnight, and while many of the teachers were going out to to club I decided to head back and try to get my apartment in order. Fortunately, I'd worked out a deal with the couple who were living there before for me to buy their furniture, etc. so there really wasn't that much that had to be done other than just making the place "mine". A little rearranging, some new towels, a plant for the coffee table and I'm good to go.

well, it's getting close to time for class to start today, so I'll have to wrap it up for now... more later


Post a Comment

About This Blog

Rick is an English teacher currently living and working in Seoul, South Korea. If you have any questions about life in Korea, feel free to email:

  © Blogger template Foam by 2009

Back to TOP