Wednesday, July 27, 2011

first few days

As you may have gathered from the previous post, we made it here safely! After a very long flight and short bus ride we arrived at our temporary accommodations. For those of you who have seen Titanic, think lower deck. Upon arrival my best friend, Sarah Bean, gave us an amazing welcome basket full of things that have been incredibly useful. An umbrella, because it rains...often and without warning. Food, which became incredibly useful our first day when we failed to find a breakfast restaurant and resorted to cookie breakfast. An adorable elephant-bank which makes lets me personalize my space. And most importantly, a pile of adorable socks! Following are the events of the first day.

For the first week we are having orientation. We started our day with a showing of some propaganda videos proving that Cheonan City is "The world's best and most hopeful future city" also "The comfortable place for Heaven, earth and man." Following this we went to eat at an amazing restaurant next to KNU (where we are staying). It was a "sit on the floor" place so we had to remove our shoes first, luckily I was wearing a pair of my new adorable socks. This is us enjoying ourselves amidst the delirium of sleep deprivation:

After lunch we went to a medical office to get physicals. This was the most efficient doctor's office I have ever visited. For 4 people it took less than 2 hours. And the phlebotomist only had to stick me once for blood, which was a relief. Also they had us pee into a cup, which may not sound strange to you, but our cup was a paper one with a picture of a smiley face whistling. And there is no discreet little cabinet in the bathroom for your smiley pee cup either. You carry the cup to the lab and put it on a table, but none of us knew this so we were mostly wandering around the hallway, full pee cup in hand, looking like lost sheep. After the pee cup/blood draw, we went upstairs to the dentist where we found this very informative poster warning against the dangers of tooth decay:

Following our physical we went back to KNU where they gave us general information about salary and benefits. During this meeting, and subsequent others, we were told how much they feel bad for us because of our outrageous health costs. With our insurance here a visit for bronchitis + medication will run us 12,000 Won (~$12 USD). It was surreal to say the least. Then I visited the school where I will be teaching, Cheonan Commercial Girls School:

Then we went to an amazing pastry shop called "Paris Baguette" for dinner and passed out around 9pm. 

End of day 1...if it seemed long to my beloved readers imagine how long it felt to your humble narrator. 



Staci and Daniel said...

I LOVE Paris Baguette. When we were in Korea we ate there at least 3 times. A girls school? How fun. I can't wait to hear more about your adventures!!


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