Apartments in Korea

20190107_123917When we first came to Korea, we were very ignorant of how things work here. We had “free” housing included in our contract so we were very happy to know that we didn’t have to pay rent every month. The problem was that we didn’t expect what was waiting for us here. Our apartment was a little bigger than a shoe box. After about 6 months we asked our director for a bigger apartment. We were now living in a one bedroom apartment and although it wasn’t huge, it was big enough for the two of us. We lived in this apartment for another 3 years. Before we moved down to Busan we decided to try and get a housing allowance instead of the housing the school offers. Check out the type of apartments given with contracts in Korea.

When we were negotiating our contracts, we both asked for a housing allowance to rent our own apartment. We got a lovely 2 bedroom apartment in Marine City, Heaundae. Here is our monthly rental breakdown

  • 1,000,000 won – rent
  • 300,000 won – management fee; free gym, sauna, parking, electricity

20181122043005400

We’ve lived here for almost 6 months and although the apartment is more expensive than anticipated, we’re very happy with our decision to live in a 2 bedroom apartment.

What would you prefer?

Bike Modifications

Hi guys!!! As you all know… we decided to buy motorcycles a few months ago. Since then my husband has really gotten exited about his bike and has made a few visual modifications. He hasn’t done anything to the engine yet but he has done quite a few regarding the graphics

This is what his bike looked like when he got it. It was already done up a little by the previous owner.

IMG_7772

The first thing my husband wanted to change was the colour of the bike. He ordered custom graphics from Scrubdesignz. He sent them this pic that he kind of designed himself. He also changed the shrouts on the side of the bike as it had a few scratches.

unnamed.png

He then sent it to Scrubdesignz indicating he colors he would like on the bike and this is what they sent him.

IMG_7978.JPGIMG_7976.JPG

He then on and added some rim stickers,

IMG_8041.JPG

brake and clutch lever,

 

IMG_8040.JPG

hand guards and added some rear view mirrors.

IMG_8035.JPG

 

Currently this is what it looks like now.

IMG_8033.JPG

What do you guys think?

Getting our Korean Drivers Licenses

We’ve been in Korea for a little over 2 years, and we’re not sure how long we’ll still be here. Since we’ve bought our motorcycles  we decided that we should probably make the effort to get our Korean Drivers licenses. Getting the normal license was pretty easy. All we had to do was go to our embassy with our drivers licenses from our country of origin. The Embassy made a copy and gave it a stamp to authenticate it. Then we took our original license, the copy from the Embassy and our Alien registration Cards and 4 photo’s to our local licensing office. Our local office wasn’t as local though, since we live in a really small ‘rural’ city, we had to travel an hour and a half to Yesan where we exchanged our original driver’s licenses for a Korean license. Luckily the Koreans do everything ‘bali-bali’, which means fast-fast…. While we were applying for our license cards we quickly wrote a theory test… got our results immediately, then we waited 10 minutes for our drivers licenses to be printed. We didn’t even have to do a practical test.

The motorcycle license is another story all together. For this we had to do a practical test. They scheduled our test for the next Wednesday at 3 o’clock, but since we work during the week we had to change our date and went for the test in Seoul ( they do tests on Saturdays). Unfortunately the test is much harder than first anticipated. We watched a lot of Youtube videos on the test, since its said to be quite hard. We even painted some lines in a vacant parking lot and practised for 2 weeks before doing the practical test and we still failed. I don’t have a lot of motorcycle experience so its no wonder that I failed but my husband has been driving a motorcycle for more than 20 years and he also failed the test. 🙁 They do however give you a big cruiser bike that you can’t even take for a test drive before the test.

Therefore we decided to go through a Driving Academy in Seoul. They show you how to do the test and then you practice on the test course for 10 hours with the bike you’ll be using for the test.. you also get to do 3 hours theory to prepare you for driving in Korea. We’ve finished most of our hours and will be doing our licenses in the next 2 weeks… Wish us luck!!

Diner en Blanc ( Seoul)

Diner en Blanc is a prestigious event held all around the world. It is inspired by François Pasquier who invited a group of his friends to meet him after a long journey. They decided to meet each other in a public park and everyone was requested to wear white so they could easily find each other. In honour of this event I’ve decided to collect a number of outfits one can possible wear to such an event. If you’re not attending one of these events you can always invite a bunch of your friends to a park for a casual picnic ( all dressed in white)

These outfits were taken from Net-A-Porter, Revolve  and Nasty GalRemember to keep your outfit classy.

What you need for a white picnic in the park. Ask your friends to bring a table and 2 fold up chairs along with their own table cloth and maybe some table decorations. It can be as elaborate as you prefer.

 

Don’t forget the French Inspired food. For more French inspired food you can look at the blog Manger. She is a French food blogger with great recipes and ideas.

Some more inspiration for arranging your own flowers and party treats.

The Flower Recipe Book    &  Sweet Designs: Bake It, Craft It, Style It

 

 

 

 

Deoksugung Palace Korea Part 1

I’ve been in Korea more than a year and only recently had the opportunity to visit one of the Palaces. Contrary to popular belief, as a teacher in Korea, you do not have all the time in the world to do the touristy thing. But we had some time to spare on Sunday and decided to walk to one of the Palaces. Deoksugung Palace is situated in the Myeongdong district in Seoul.20160424_130827

History

Deoksugung Palace served as the king’s residence twice during the Joseon Dynasty. It was originally the home of King Seonjo and Prince Wolson who temporarily lived there after the Japanese forces withdrew from Korea in 1593. He lived here because all the main palaces where destroyed during the war. Prince Gwanghae renamed the Palace Gyeongungung Palace after rebuilding the palace and making it his main resident. The palace was used as a main residence by Gojong again during 1897. During the Joseon Dynasty the state was proclaimed an empire. The palace halls were rebuild and the compound was expanded to some three times its present size. Unfortunately Gojong was forced to hand his empire over to his son who became Emporor Sunjong in 1907. Emperor Sunjong Moved into Changdeokgung Palace and bestowed the title of Deoksu (virtue and long life) on his father, wishing him a long life. The compound came to be called Deoksugung Palace and the former emperor remained here until his death in 1919

Both Korean and Western architecture dominate the site. While walking amongst the Korean style buildings it feels like you’re walking in a different time. Almost like you’re part of a different era. It was quite an amazing feeling.

20160424_122739_120160424_12263020160424_12291320160424_122606

 

20160424_12303020160424_130633

To get there you can take the dark blue line (line 1) and get off at the City Hall, across from Seoul Plaza. Alternatively if you get off at Myongdong (light blue line) you can walk about 2 blocks down Eulji-ro, past Lotte Duty Free to get there. Its right across from Seoul Plaza.

Next week I will feature the western style architecture at Deoksugung Palace.

 

Interesting reads to help save money in Korea

The Wealthy English teacher