Playing the waiting game

So I don’t think I mentioned it on here, but I definitely expressed my mini-freak out to many people over my apostilled Criminal Background Check. And I’m sure many of you reading this have no clue what an apostille is, because frankly neither did I before this whole process. Here’s a lil breakdown….

I sent off my fingerprints to the FBI in West Virginia for the criminal background check (CBC) back in March, and got those results back (clean as a whistle!) on May 3rd. You would think that just getting that check would be enough, but NO, you are required to send back your results to the State Department in DC for them to be apostilled, which is authenticating your document. In a nutshell: IF you are going to work in a country that has signed the Hague agreement then you have to get your documents apostilled – so your degree and CBC. This basically says that your documents are authentic and will be recognized abroad.

Well, about my freak out! I forgot to pay the $24 to get my 3 CBCs apostilled and I didn’t realize I had to pay until the govt had them for a month! I freaked out, paniced out of my mind and cursed myself for being so stupid, and called the govt about 50x only to leave a million messages on several different voicemails. GRRR! BUT, my faith in the govt was restored when on Monday I received all 3 back in the mail beautifully apostilled! They also sent me a letter with it saying something to the effect of “you didn’t submit payment but we didn’t want to delay your process so went ahead and processed anyways. Please submit $24 at your earliest convenience.” Sweet sweet government authorities, how i heart you ❤

So that same day I immediately slid the apostilled CBC into my already organized package and FedEx'd that ish off to my lovely recruiter, Dia, in Seoul. They ended up getting to here by Wednesday, which was a day early (phew!) and she sent them off to the EPIK office (EPIK – English Program in Korea – the program I'm going to teach through). Now I just play the waiting game and see if I end up getting placed in Seoul as I had been pre-assigned.

On another note, I'm also hoping that I passed my TEFL test. That shit was HARD! It turned out being a total of 25 pages and it literally took me all day because I gave myself mental breaks and a big break to go Zumba. I was delirious the whole next day because once I finished and sent the damn test off at 3am I couldn't get back to sleep. Not until about 7am, after which I slept for a mere 3 hrs. erggg

All I can do now is wait wait wait….and cross them fingas!

And so it begins…

Hey everyone! Welcome welcome to my blog! I’m really excited to write to the world about my new life journey.  In  2.5 months I will be moving to South Korea to be an English teacher. As of right now, I’ve been pre-assigned to Seoul, which I honestly didn’t think I had a chance of getting.  I’ve been told it’s near impossible as a new teacher with no teaching experience to be placed there.  I must have seriously rocked my interview.  Thank you little asian man!

So, I’ll bore you with a brief timeline, and where I’m at right now with the whole process.  As many of you know, I’ve always wanted to find a way to travel and get paid to do it.  Hence, teaching English abroad seemed like the perfect opportunity.  After all, I can work on my patience level, make a difference in lives and get paid to gallavant around the world!  I explored this idea about 4 years ago, but then I got that sweet job working for JLo.  I didn’t really think about it much again until I’d say this past November/December when I was stuck in another awful job and wanted desperately to escape.  I started doing some research again and decided I wanted to go to Italy.  As I explored more I learned that Asian countries are far more easier for first time teachers to secure jobs – so I looked into Japan (then the tsunami happened), China didn’t appeal to me too much, and Thailand has pretty shitty pay and I need to save save save.  Then I delved into S. Korea where I learned that they pay for pretty much everything and you get a fairly high salary,  and it’s the perfect destination to go to if you want to save and pay off debts. DING DING DING.  Not to mention, I’ve talked to several friends of friends who are in S. Korea and absolutely LOVE it there.  So, that’s how I decided, and frankly I’m super excited about this decision.  Along the way I had also planned to go with a minute-boyfriend that I met in New Orleans.  We began the whole process together and it was actually wonderful having someone to help keep you on track.  But then that fizzled and I have continued to carry on my way 🙂 Stupid boys ain’t gon’ bring me down 😉

Anyways!  I’m currently working with my recruiter, Dia Kim at KorVia Consulting, who is wonderful and so sweet. She’s my go-to person and has been so helpful in getting the process going. She set up my interview with EPIK (the program I will be going to Korea and working for), and was so happy for me when I passed the interview.  Right now I’m just waiting to get my Criminal Background Check back from the State Department with an Apostille, which is a form of certification on a document.  I’m crossing my fingers I get it back this week because the EPIK program is first come first serve.

So, I passed my interview and I’m waiting to send off my documents.  In the meantime I’m also getting TEFL certified (grammar, yay!).  Once I send my documents off, the EPIK office will review them, and once they verify all of those, I should get my NoA (Notice of Appointment) so I can go get a visa from the Korean consulate.  OMG I can’t WAIT to have a visa in my passport!! 🙂

I plan on updating my blog every step of the way, and of course once I’m living abroad in South Korea, so please keep coming back for more tales of a Jew in the Orient. I promise it’ll be fun times! 🙂