Two months in Korea FAQs
Part II: Living
Where do you live?
I live in Seogwipo, which is on the south side of Jeju island, which is to the south of the mainland. It’s a pretty small city, if you can even call it a city. But I like it. It’s on the water, a little bit artsy, and overall very chill. My kind of place.
Jeju city is the capital on the north side of the island, and is a bit bigger. I’ll head up there after work with my coteacher to sort out important immigration, bank, phone, etc. things. Or on the weekends if I’m feeling a bit more social than usual. It’s an hour long bus ride from north to south.
Do you like it?
So far, I love it. I haven’t been here long, but it already seems to have a lot of the qualities I look for in places I like to call home (even if just temporarily). I love being able to walk out my door and go for a wander along the coast, to a nearby waterfall, or through the weekend art market.
What is your apartment like?
I live in a small studio apartment on the ninth out of ten floors. The apartment itself is a fairly standard English teacher apartment. It’s got one room with my bed, a desk and chair, and the kitchen area. Attached is the bathroom, and there is a small balcony that houses my washing machine. It’s cozy and the perfect amount of space for me. Although, unsurprisingly, I struggle to keep it clean.
The view from my balcony is pretty great – I can see Mt. Hallasan to the left, and the water to the right. I’ve gotten to see some amazing sunrises when I wake up early for work in the mornings. I still need to buy curtains so I can sleep in on the weekends though.
Of course, my favorite part is that I live in the same building as a really good group of other English teachers. It was so convenient to have doors to knock on everyday when I first arrived and didn’t know how to use the washing machine or how to turn on my heat. Now that most of my questions have been answered, I just get to enjoy the social aspect of it. Sometimes, it feels like college. Which I love, because I still miss college a lot.
I really enjoy having my own space. I’m still an introvert and need my alone time. But I also get lonely very easily, and I love always having someone to hang out with.
Do you feel settled?
In some ways, yes, and in some ways, no. I’ve slowly been acquiring things for my apartment. So far, it’s mostly functional things so I can live, eat, sleep, etc. comfortably. However, I still have a ways to go to making the place feel homey.
I’m slowly getting my bearings around Seogwipo. I at least know how to take the bus to school and get to the grocery store. However, I still don’t feel like I really know my way around. I’m hoping to have some visitors this summer, and I’d really like to be a good host/tour guide by the time they come. So, I plan on exploring as much as possible until then.