I Live In Korea

My name is Ben Gwynne. I USED to teach English in Incheon, South Korea. Here's some photos, stories, videos, etc.

Yup, it’s time for another BG blog. If you don’t know already I’ll be living in Incheon, South Korea teaching English for one year (unless I can’t handle it or if I love, either or). I want to stay in touch with everyone and figured this is the best medium for me to share my stories, pictures, thoughts, and also kill some time, I’ve got plenty of it to spare.

I left the great city of New York on the 28th of August amidst a farewell parade which turned into a 3 week long affair due to several canceled flights. I finally wore out my welcome and hopped across the pond for three days to visit some old friends in England. No point in detailing what went on there (pure debauchery), I’d rather talk about why I’m in South Korea and what you will be seeing ahead.

Perpetually searching for adventure and fulfillment, I figured it was time for me to finally knock off #13 on my Life Goals List: Live in non-English speaking country for at least a year. Teaching English abroad is a great opportunity for anyone who is unsure what they want to do with their lives, wants a change of pace, and enjoys traveling. Plus, I like kids and have thought about teaching back in the United States, so here I am.

Now I’m ready to embrace a new culture, with no fears or concerns of being shocked. I’ve traveled enough and am open-minded enough that few things shock me, they may surprise me but I don’t think I’ll ever be in a situation where I’m incapable of dealing with the cultural mores or norms of a new place (except the deep south in the United States).

So how is South Korea so different from the US so far based on what you know? Sure, it may not be normal for men to call other men handsome in the United States if they are straight, but in South Korea it’s okay (even if it’s the first thing the male principal of your school says to you). Sure, when I got off the plane in South Korea (Incheon International Airport, voted the best airport in the world for several years in a row) I may have thought I was going on to the set of Outbreak considering a large number of people were wearing masks around their face, but it’s common here to wear those if you’re even remotely under the weather.

When I see, hear or learn about these differences in culture, I might laugh or be confused, but I try embracing them and realizing if a a Korean moved to the U.S. they might be taken back by certain things in our culture.

So, I’m tired, jetlagged, and maybe even a little hung-over, but I’ve still got the creative juices flowing and am looking forward to making this a relatively enjoyable and informative blog.

Kamsamnida (thank you)


Anonymous said...


Was just going through your blog and wanted ask if there are any specifice job requirements/qualifications you need to have to teach english in Korea?

Love your blog..theres so many interesting things to read about!

Anonymous said...

If you have a college degree and are a native english speaker you are good to go. Let me know if you have more questions.

- bg