Sunday, 8 April 2012


Or in English, "Long time no see."

I'm disappointed I haven't been to tutoring for Korean in a month, now. But this job is draining if you couldn't tell from my last post. I come home and feel like I have to dread going to work the next day. I don't even feel like I enjoy my dinner, book, shower, or anything for the next 4-5 hours. I could compare it to my old job and say how I never felt this way or as drained, but what good what it do? I'm still learning to be a mature person and break my old habits of thinking like a 15 year old. One never stops growing, and I happen to be a little slower at these things. :P

Anyhow, work has gotten a smidgen better. It has since become bearable since I pulled my boss aside to let her know how uncomfortable I was with my co-workers. I felt like they were gossiping about me, didn't even give me a chance upon arriving. I mean, literally on the first day, I said, "Hi! Nice to meet---" before one of my coworkers half looked at me and scurried off like she was busy. Good first impression. As for the other one, she didn't even smile or shake my hand. I was truly shocked by this. It was the art teacher that made an effort to talk to me at lunch and get to know me. Even to this day, she still makes conversation with me when my mind is blank and I try to search for something in my exhausted brain to think of something. Anyway, I suppose she brought my feelings to their attention and it was like they instantly did a 180 turn in attitude. It was a little unnerving and disturbing, but hey, I'll take that any day. I think now, they are starting to somewhat warm up to me and actually give me a chance.

There are times where I find I am really bothered by their hypocritical actions. I let the kids out 2 minutes early or 1 minute late and they pull me aside to remind me, "Please let them out on time." Boy, okay. I get the picture. I'll let them out at :00 on the dot! I'm not even allowed to let them pack until probably 30 seconds before and I have to cross my fingers that they can be focused enough to pack in 30 seconds and not be late or I get my head served on a platter. It's funny, though. Every day for the last 2.5 weeks, I have let them out right on the dot and every other day, when parents are present, they let the kids out an entire 5 minutes early! And those same parents complain that I let them out too early with 2 minutes to go? Holy shemoly... talk about weird standards? The thing that also annoyed me was that I was told my voice was too quiet, which I know is not true. I had just lost my voice and was still recovering it from yelling constantly. Those kids, bottom line, don't pay attention to a non-Korean speaking teacher. That's that. Luckily for me, I think my co-teachers are realizing this and my frustration and are finally laying down the law with the kids.

What other things do I find rather odd? Well, this isn't new. It happened at our old school, too... kids that don't belong in a certain class because they know absolutely no English! Zip! Yet they are placed in a class filled with children than understand 90% of what I'm saying. This is done to satisfy the parents... but the parents don't know that what they want is not helping their children! And I find it funny that the reason children are kept in these classes is for the sake of age-group and ultimately, the running of a business! That exact point made me lose a lot of respect for this person. I thought, goodness... I thought there was a lot of integrity in this certain hagwon, but when that came out of my boss's mouth, I saw that this wasn't about the children. My heart dropped. I'm not even a real teacher, and I have these kids' interests at heart more than any of these co-teachers or the boss. It really made me fire up, but if I'm too keep my job, I have to temper myself out... realize some hagwons just run this way. I absolutely consider that this is partly due to culture if not most of it, but I find it hard to be okay with this any way. I thought from the way this woman spoke, she would understand how things should be run. Especially with having children of her own! A job is a job... and while I believe in standing up for what I believe in, I have to consider my circumstances and my environment. The rational thing to do is that the benefits and situation (culture) I'm in begets my decision to stay quiet and accept the way of things here.

On a happier note, there are things I am still enjoying here! Not all things are bad as I make them seem. I am lucky to be working with my best friend and to be living in a country that I love regardless of the school system as that's just a teensy part of this experience. I admit, I lose track of that site with my head buried in work. I love that the food is delicious and cheap, I love that the clothes are cheap and so trendy and once I go back to the US, it's bye-bye. :( The weather today is absolutely perfect and it makes my heart so happy! It's sunny and warm! There's a wind, but it's not the crisp and bitter kind. It's more of a strong spring breeze as it should be! It's officially spring isn't it? I love that when I get off work, it's still bright outside now. I can't wait for the summer days in Korea. While I won't be here much for that again... I look forward to it. It's my favorite time of the year in Korea... it's absolutely beautiful and I love being outside!

Outside of work, I've made a long and hard decision to forego going to the law schools I've been accepted to. Even with the tiny scholarships. Once I saw that some Tier 2 schools were considering me (and still are), I felt I shot too low. I'm just scared that I won't be able to score higher on my LSATs or God forbid that I score lower than I did this time. But I'm mustering up the courage to believe in myself and think it's possible to get into schools like Pepperdine, USD, etc... other great Tier 2 schools that are in the top 50-80. I admit that since I naturally have an insanely low amount of self-confidence, I have to fight myself every day to make myself believe I can do it. It helps that Ryan always encourages me and reminds me even though I'm sure it would tire the normal person out to do it every day. For that, I'm very lucky I have someone like him. :) So that's that. When I leave Korea, I will be taking another year off to retake the LSATs. And that's all for now, folks!

Hopefully soon, I will have pictures to update you all with!


  1. Margaret, you are so amazing. I loved reading your post. I am so out of the loop of your life. I truly wish I weren't. I had no idea that you already applied to law school. How is Ryan? What is he going to do? What are you planning to do until you make the law school jump? You are so amazing. Maybe we can work on our confidence thing together. I've been on a similar boat lately. I've decided to do things that aren't as intense in life for the near future in hopes of building that confidence back up. I feel like the only thing that differs between myself and the amazingly successful people that I work around is that they don't question what they do...

    I love you so dearly and deeply and I think about you all the time.

    1. Julie, I miss you so much. If there's a time I could talk to you, I wish it could be now. I am feeling so down right now. I've got way too many feelings that I need to sort out with someone other than myself. I just need a friend right now. I miss and love you so much.

      Always thinking of you, too. You're amazing. <3