After endless adventures while spending a month in Seoul and nearly two weeks in Hong Kong (check out my post on what you need to know before planning your trip to Hong Kong: here) getting my Korean Visa, it was time to head to my new home and get back to work.
My new home: Suncheon, Republic of Korea.
Upon my return to Korea I spent five days in Seoul training with my academy to become an English teacher at one of their main schools.
This was no easy experience. I have never taught before in my life. I honestly had no idea what to expect and I didn't think it would be that hard. Boy was I wrong. While I liked the young woman who trained us, she was no pushover and she worked us hard to make sure we were prepared. A tough experience where I started to doubt myself. Thoughts of giving up definietly started to creep up on me.
I came way too far to just give up like that. I pushed on. I'll be forever grateful I did.
One young American didn't fare so well. He arrived a day late from Dallas and even after missing a day of training never could get comfortable and improve. He ended up leaving without a word after the third day. A nice young man but clearly, teaching was not, and is likely never going to be, for him.
One of the coolest things about the training period in Seoul was our school building was across the street from the 1988 Seoul Olympic Park. Here was the view of the Athletes Village from the classroom we occupied throughout the 5 days.
Upon passing the training phase, I was off to Suncheon on that same Friday. It was a four hour bus ride from Seoul to Suncheon.
Suncheon is an industrial city of 250,000 in the southern part of the Jeollanam-do province of the Republic of Korea. Suncheon resides near Suncheon Bay, a world famous wetlands that supplies Korea with 70% of it's seafood.
Hopefully you can spot Suncheon on the map. If not, Suncheon's location can be seen parallel to the first line of this paragraph almost due west of Korea's second largest city, Busan. Almost in the center of the peninsula but on it's southern coastal edge.
I mentioned the ride from Seoul to Suncheon was a four hour ride. No need to fear, the busses in Korea are rider friendly (see the image below). As I understand it, there are lower end busses available for certain routes that might be slightly less expensive but paying ₩27,400 (~ $27.40) for a four hour bus ride sitting in a leather lounge chair (with leg rest to boot!) was well worth the price.
It is quite possible that the shorter bus routes don't offer a premium option and the longer bus routes don't offer a lower end option. I'm not going to act like I'm a Korean bus travel expert...just yet :)
The layout of these premium busses were (looking down the aisle) two seats on the right and one on the left. I was fortunate enough to sit on the left side of the bus so I didn't have a travel partner.
In my experiences in the United States, a bus like this doesn't exist. I might be wrong but I've never experienced anything like this. Great comfortability for the price of a bus ticket sitting on a wildly uncomfortable Greyhound or Megabus seat in the US.
From my experiences in the first three months here in Korea, traveling is cheap and comfortable. The view on the way south from Seoul to Suncheon didn't disappoint either.
Fun fact: 70% of Korea is covered in mountains.
Since arriving in Suncheon I have been busy (and exhausted) getting acquainted to my new home. When I'm not teaching (which I'm doing a lot of), I'm spending what free time I have, having a bit of, "me" time.
I haven't yet had a chance to explore Suncheon and Suncheon Bay but I plan to do that very soon. I have some exciting adventures planned. Don't give up on me just yet!