We are going to Japan! We received a confirmation from the Japanese Embassy, telling us that our passports are ready for collection. All we have to do is travel to Seoul, pick them up, and we are sorted. Therein lies the rub. With the hours we work, even the most insignificant bureaucratic task requires more planning than a politician’s response to a sex scandal.
The majority of bureacratic entities in Korea, be they embassies, banks, or immigration, work normal weekdays, just like we do. This means that we would have to take at least a part of the day off in order to allow this to happen. For a normal person working a desk job, this can vary in difficulty from packing up and leaving to filling in some forms. For a teacher, however, it requires a good deal more. Who is going to replace you in the class while you are gone? Have you planned lessons for that time? Are those plans comprehensible to people other than yourself? All of these considerations are of utmost importance when one thinks about taking some time off in a hagwon.
Nevertheless, we have been in communication with our director surrounding this, and we have a couple of days where we could potentially leave the school for a few hours. Our excitement for Japan is growing! In less than a month, we will be in the land of many childhood fantasies, and we cannot wait!