Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Going Home Early

...but this time not because I'm sick! Not that I wound up going home from that, after all, but that's another story.

Turns out, the school doesn't want to file for visa extensions so that we native English teachers can finish out our contracts. So they're sending us home about five days early. Now, some schools do this with the express intent of shafting their teachers out of severance pay due to a legal loophole that lets them say, "YOU DIDN'T FINISH YOUR CONTRACT SO NOW WE KEEP YOUR MONEY HAHAHAHA SUCKERS!" But as we've been told, expressly, that we WILL be getting severance along with our last month's pay, and the school has mostly operated in good faith with us up to this point, I have confidence they will follow through.

If not, I know some numbers and people to call that will get them in a lot of trouble with the Labor Board. :|

We'll also be filing for our pension refunds, which is another nice chunk of change, so I'll be coming home with a decent cushion of money even though I was unable to save much. Between living expenses and paying off debts at home, I have managed to save... essentially nothing. But, hey! I was paying off student loans that were otherwise going into default, so that's something. Also I paid off the computer that I'm currently using to blog, so that's another tick off the to-do list. It's progress. I'm not complaining.

If all goes as planned, I should be getting a flight home on September 24th, which is on a Saturday. Meaning my boyfriend Chris won't have to take time off work to get me from the airport and spend some quality snuggle time with me. Bonus!

As promised, I will continue to update this blog with photos and whatnot from Korea even after I return home, until I run out of things to post. And then it will sit here, gathering dust, an archive to a time in my life when I lived all by myself on the other side of the planet for a year, teaching English to children in a country where I am a minority and my language is not the most commonly spoken. I've learned as much (if not more) than I've taught in my time here. I've learned about myself. I've learned about dealing with people I wouldn't necessarily choose to associate with, given a choice. I've learned some perspective. I've learned a little bit about being a functional adult with a steady job. I've learned so much, and yet so distressingly little, about this fascinating country and its language and people and culture. I've learned how hard it is to be away from the people and places and things that I love from home, and how surprisingly (and simultaneously) strong and weak I can be when it comes to homesickness.

I have learned that I still have a lot to learn.

But it's a good start.

See you soon,



  1. Congrats for thriving almost a year abroad, working, teaching, and learning! I'm happy for you. I hope your trip back to the US goes well and that whatever is coming up next in life goes well!