How I met an Australian guy in Korea…

I recently realized that I haven’t been very personal on my blog in some time. I feel like my readers aren’t getting a real sense about what life is like for me in Korea or what I’ve been up to, other than going on so many fabulous adventures. Each week (at least until I run out of interesting tid-bits) I will be sharing something a bit personal with you. If you have any questions for me, PLEASE leave them in the comments. I’d love to answer them.

This week I am going to tell you the story about how I met Dave.

Aaron Nicholas Photography

Photo by Aaron Nicholas Photography

Continue reading

Say WHAT?!

It’s Say WHAT?! Wednesday again! That means I get to share with you more bad English or weird things that I’ve seen during my time in South Korea.

Just in case you missed last week, CLICK HERE to check out the crazy shirt I caught one of my 6th graders wearing to school!

“BABY IN CAR” type signs have been popular in many places in the world at one time or another and they are all the rage in Korea at the moment. It was no surprise to me that the large stationary chain in town was selling them, but nothing could have prepared me for this…

Baby [with axe] in car!

To me, it screams, “Don’t drive like a jerk because I have a baby with an axe inside the car and there’s no telling what he might do!” Personally, I find babies with axes terrifying. And this one in particular kind of looks like a badass.

Don’t forget: CLICK HERE to see last week’s Say WHAT?! Wednesday.

Say WHAT?! Wednesday

English is so popular here that it almost doesn’t matter what something says, Koreans will buy it just for the writing. This week’s Say WHAT?! is one of the best examples I can think of to prove my point.

During my first year teaching in Busan, I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw one of the most popular 6th grade girls wearing the shirt below.

engrishIf you can’t make out the writing, it says…


I’m having a GIVEAWAY!

***EDIT: The contest is now over. Thank you to those that participated!***

How to enter:

1. Go to the Life Outside of Texas Facebook Page and LIKE it, if you haven’t already.

2. Look for the giveaway photo (see below) and LIKE it!

3. You MUST like THIS photo on the Life Outside of Texas Facebook Page by Thursday, April 4th, 2013 to be eligible. The cut off time is 8am Central Standard Time/10pm Korea Standard Time.

That’s it. Entering is free and I am covering shipping… so what do you have to lose?

Enter now!!

giveaway1I will try to contact the winner via Facebook message. If unable to contact the winner by Facebook, I will post the results to the Facebook wall and on a blog post. Please check back tomorrow for the results.

***EDIT: The contest is now over. The winner has been notified.***

Part 2: Things that just don’t seem strange anymore…

Because the first post was so popular, here are more things that just don’t seem strange [about Korea] anymore…
  1. You start telling people they should “take a rest.”
  2. Blue eyes can put others into a state of hypnosis.
  3. A single bar of soap can kill the bacteria on the hands of 1,000 people.
  4. You’re getting used to fruit flies buzzing around your head.
  5. You love buying food in the supermarket that is scotch-taped to something else.
  6. The wait staff likes to cook your food and feed it to you.
  7. You cross your arms in an X every time you say NO or disagree about something.
  8. You think you’re back in university after hearing loud drunks stumbling home at 4am on a Sunday morning… but then realize its 50 year olds wearing suits.
  9. Koreans seem to be able to find anything from “www[dot]daum[dot]net” but you’re not even sure what kind of site it is.
  10. You feel like you’re playing Frogger every time you walk to school or have lunch in the cafeteria.
  11. Parking a car means turning off the engine.
  12. You find yourself chopping vegetables while sitting on your bed because there is no counter space.
  13. Your fate is often determined through a game of Rock, Paper, Scissors.
  14. People just love to watch your groceries go through the checkout.
  15. Clerks in the stores stand at attention and ready to pounce on you with customer service.
  16. Dishes and ironing are taking up too much of your spare time.
  17. You’ve-ah started talking like-ah this-ah.
  18. No matter where you are standing, you are always in an old lady’s way.
  19. You actually prefer bowing to saying hello.
  20. People only need to walk one block to reach a convenience store or PC room.
  21. People politely start public trash piles rather than littering everywhere.
  22. You find yourself disappointed in the equipment offered at the free public park gyms.
  23. You still have no clue how the garbage/recycling system works here.
  24. You’re already losing your motivation for temple-stay and learning fluent Korean.
  25. Everyone is very impressed with your chopstick skills and kimchi-eating ability.

*I didn’t write any of these myself, but they pretty much sum up life in Korea. *

You can find the original post here:

Things that just don’t seem strange anymore…

Carnival of Drifter Tales

Life In Texas & Questions Answered

snow in texas

First of all, Texas… Where am I?! This weather is a little crazy for us. According to my Nana, “It’s just pouring snow!” which is an expression I’ve never heard before. This is day 4 of being stuck at home. A friend of mine posted some pictures and a video of herself ice skating on her driveway… no, serioulsy…

snow in texas

But now all of that ice is covered up with snow, and Nana and I took advantage of that today. We set out to make a snowman, but the snow was too powdery for that.

snow in texassnow in texassnow in texas snow in texas

Here’s our snowman attempt. Pretty pathetic. It’s just a snow blob, really.

snow in texas

This is what snow boots look like in Texas. haha

snow in texas

And after all of the fun outside, we came inside and Nana made us some hot chocolate. I’m going to miss her.


korean won

A few of you asked about the won so I thought I would go into a little more depth about the benefits of working in South Korea. EPIK Program salary and benefits consist of the following:

  • Roundtrip airfare reimbursement (must complete contract)
  • 300,000 won settlement allowance
  • Monthly salary
  • Severance pay equal to one month’s salary per year worked
  • Free furnished housing
  • 2 years tax exemption
  • 50% of mandatory medical insurance premiums
  • 50% of compulsory pension plan contribution
  • 10-day EPIK Orientation

Click on the chart below to see a larger image of the EPIK Pay Scale.

So now I guess you all really want to know how much 2 million won is worth in US Dollars… right? I’ll be making about $1,800 a month. I know that’s not a lot, but I won’t have to pay rent and since I don’t have a car in South Korea I won’t have to pay for gas or car insurance. I have been told that I can easily set aside half of my income every month. If I had taught somewhere in Europe I wouldn’t have even made half of what I will make in Korea and I would have to pay for airfare and rent.

Thank you all so much for the comments and subscriptions yesterday! Keep them coming! Some of you had problems with the subscription feature. If you didn’t get a confirmation email then it probably didn’t work, and you’ll need to sign up again. Check back tomorrow. I’ll be posting that blog about Busan that I promised I was going to post today. haha