Who would’ve thought that I’d be going to another country on the other side of the world? A fresh beginning is what I needed.
People thought I was crazy. LOL.
After spending ten months in Thailand, I knew that living in the US just wasn’t for me anymore. I didn’t even want to leave Thailand in the first place, but I had to. When I returned home, everything was different; I was different. I felt trapped- physically, mentally, and emotionally. I realized that there was nothing there for me anymore. There was no adventure; no challenge. The pandemic changed my plans, as it did with many others.
At the beginning of March, I came home from Thailand. Eight months later and here I am in quarantine waiting for the day (December 8, 2020) when I can be freeee.
The hardest part about coming home from Thailand was that I wanted to leave right away. Buttttt, ya know, we were in a pandemic. I went from having the time of my life to being locked inside my house indefinitely, just like the rest of the world.
In June was when I had enough. I mean, I kind of wanted to leave right when I got home but plans change. I started looking into countries that would take me as an ESL teacher in the middle of coronavirus. While researching, I would talk to my friends that I met abroad and they had plans to go to South Korea.
Teaching in South Korea had crossed my mind once or twice before but I initially had plans to go back to Thailand and then from Thailand I’d go to Ireland.
I reaaally wanted to go to Europe, more specifically, Spain.. Check out how to spend 48 hours in Madrid! It’s a detailed itinerary that shows the beauty of the capital.
However, during the start of the pandemic, the only two countries that were accepting teachers in early July were South Korea and Thailand.
It’s crazy how many jobs I had applied for. I applied for numerous positions in both countries, awaiting anxiously. I can’t even remember how many recruiters I talked to. My friend found a great recruiter (orrrrr, so we thought) that helped us start the initial process.
Little did we know it would take much more time, stress, and a TON of back pain.
My days started early. In the morning I’d post my resume on sites such as Dave’s ESL cafe, Gone 2 Korea, Go Overseas, ESL Rok, and several others. I joined a bunch of Facebook groups and would scroll on Google for hours.
I heard back from a good amount, but the process was difficult because I was out of the country. It ended up taking a lot of time and effort to even get schools and recruiters to answer me. My friend and I joked that searching for jobs was a full-time job.
Finally, A Fresh Beginning:
After months of staring at my computer, I received a job… from the recruiter who I first talked to back in July.
Being placed near Seoul was the goal, just like 85% of others looking to teach in South Korea.
What really mattered to me was that I could get a fresh beginning; a fresh start. Busan and Seoul are the top locations that everyone wants. I’m only about an hour-ish away so I settled. But, if you want a specific location then you will eventually find a job, it just may take some more time, especially during a pandemic.
For me personally, I thought it would be a good idea to be placed in an area that I was unfamiliar with. I wanted to challenge myself.