Thursday, August 29, 2019

Ewha Exchange D2 - Welcoming ceremony | Housing orientation | Buddy group


Welcome back to another post about yet another busy day.
For our second day here at Ewha, we had the big welcoming ceremony!

I was dressed cute and comfortably for what was going to be an active day. And I'd spent time in the morning fixing my hair so it'd look nice and all but that was ruined by the rain.

You see, until today, the weather had been HOT HOT HOT with around 35°C every day. But today the weather gods decided that no, one can only have so much sunshine before it becomes unhealthy. And thus the weather gods blessed us with a month's worth of rain or so.

Of course most of us hadn't foreseen the weather gods' decision to soak us all so a lot of us were pretty wet when we arrived at the ECC hall where the orientation was to be held.
Look at the dude's shirt!

I used my green bag, as pictured above, to try to stay as dry as possible and while doing so, I discovered that it's rainproof. Neat!
The ECC building is super cool, by the way. It's built into the ground so we could see all the water piling up outside.

In the big hall outside, we lined up to turn in the paper that Joo helped me print yesterday. Afterwards we were handed Ewha bags with handbooks, folders, and other important papers.


The papers and orientation supplied us with information about campus, course registration, and alien registration. The paper with the bear in the upper left corner was a guide on how to open a bank account.


When the orientation began, we were greeted by Bongjin Kim (김봉진), the Vice President of International Affairs at Ewha Woman's University.
While he told us that we - of course - should study, we were also here to have fun! And it was important that we made sure to have fun!

As shown in the orientation schedule above, we also watched a video on sexual harassment; what qualifies as harassment and how to deal with it. This was the first time I had had to watch something like that.
Afterwards some of the PEACE buddies were introduced and they did little sketches (in English, Chinese, Japanese, French) while telling us about different events that would be arranged for us during our stay such as the upcoming movie night, ordering baseball jackets together, renting a club in Hongdae (홍대) etc.
They also talked shortly about part-time jobs. While I'd hoped to find a job during the semester, I might not be able to..

When it was time for lunch, we could all pick a sandwich and a juice before leaving the room. People just sat down on the floor randomly and I decided to follow the girls who had been behind and in front of me in the food queue.
The lunch break was pretty long so we had plenty of time to learn about each other, our countries, and our majors.
 The girl in the middle here is Abbie from America. The boy is someone I waved over because he didn't seem to know anyone yet. He ended up being in my buddy group, which I'll talk about later.
The girl with the beautiful lavender hair is Marie from England and her Korean BUDDY to the right.
To my right is Tiia from Findland. These were the girls I got closest to that day.

We had a bit more of orientation and then it was off to see campus!
I was honestly still a bit confused after the tour but I'm sure I'll figure out what all the buildings are soon.
My buddy group returned to ECC and since we had a while before the next orientation (yes, that's right, another orientation), we sat down to get to know each other a little bit.
Here's our buddy group!
The girl in pink is our PEACE buddy 서윤 (Seoyoon), the girl in a beige shirt in front of me is actually my neighbor in the dorm, and the guy in white was the guy I waved over when we had lunch. I wonder if we'll get to do a lot of cool things together.

The second orientation, the Housing Orientation, was only for residents of the dorms. There are several dorms here so they decided to split us according to which building we are staying in.
Everything they said was in the Resident's Handbook, which we'd been given upon checking in yesterday.

At the end of the OT, we had to turn in these little cards to confirm that we really were there.

If you fail to show up to this, you get 3 demerit points. At 10 demerit points they evict you. Attendance is no joke at Ewha. Luckily it was over quickly.

Our building was the last to have the orientation (among our little friend group) so when we were done, my roommate Banu and I gathered with the other girls that I had lunch with + a few more to go out for dinner.

We ate at a nearby chicken place that Marie had been to a couple of days prior.
I was the only of us who could speak Korean but that didn't stop Marie, the girl with lavender hair, from trying. We all had a good laugh at her cute attempt to order food.
Taking group pictures is hard.
People never look great at the same time.
After eating, we took a quick stroll down to 신촌 (Sinchon) to check out the area before heading back home.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Ewha Exchange D1 - Moving into the dorm | Make-up class | Uijeongbu (의정부)



Hello and welcome back!

It's been a while since my last post and I apologize for that. 

Today will be the first post of many about my life as an exchange student in Seoul, South Korea.

I've previously studied a semester at Yonsei University and now I'm  back in Korea to spend a semester at Ewha Woman's University.

During my last exchange, I wrote entries about my days spent here (with a couple of exceptions because I got into a busy period) and those are posts that I'm very fond of because it allows me to remember some of my favorite memories. If you'd like to read them, you can find the first post HERE.

With that said, I want to do the same again this time - writing down what will eventually become great memories - while also giving tips about life as an exchange student and life at Ewha. I hope you'll read along~

I arrived in Seoul in mid August but because I was so busy, got sick, and suffered from jetlag, it was too hard for me to keep track of the days. So for simplicity's sake, I'm going to count this post as "Day 1 of my exchange adventures at Ewha."

With that said, let's begin!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The first day was intense!

Today was the big moving day and because I had a full schedule, I wanted to move into my dorm as early as possible - which was at 09:00 in the morning.
If I remember correctly, we moved into Yonsei's dorm around noon last time I studied here. 9am was definitely a more comfortable time to move at because it wasn't as hot outside yet.

Getting to the dorm was not too problematic except when I couldn't find the elevator at Ewha station and ended up carrying my luggage up way too many stairs. My arms were shaky once I reached the top but I am a strong and independent girl and I survived. (We did get help at Sinchon station (신촌역) when moving into Yonsei, which was nice though).

When I reached the building, I met an American girl, who guided me on where to go and I soon found myself in the moving-in queue.
The moving-in procedure was also alright. Once I saw the signs with the steps, it was easy to do. And because I had come so early, it wasn't too crowded yet. Upon moving in, we handed in our tuberculosis test results, which are absolutely necessary when moving into the dorm because they will not let you in without it.
They took a copy of my passport, handed me the dorm rules, gave us a resident handbook and the wifi password as well as instructions on how to use it (+told us how to change our online password which must be done before signing up for courses tomorrow), gave us our card keys and the housing fee invoice, and then handed me and two others girls a tablet with a 1-minute orientation video about everything you need to know when moving into the dorm. There was a bit of background noise in the room and the sound must have been broken because I couldn't hear anything. So after the video, we had everything explained to us once again.
A pillow would be provided but the blanket, bed sheet, and pillow sheet was something we should either buy ourselves or rent from Ewha for just 3000₩ (17 DKK / 3$). In comparison, the dorm at Yonsei provided us with these things as well for free, which I thought was nice. It's not really something you want to use your luggage space for when coming to Korea and most people probably don't want to waste space bringing it back home with them so they'd just end up throwing it out once it's time to move out.

Here is my dorm handbook, my room card, and the dormitory fee invoice.
The room card must be used to enter and leave the dorm buildings and then our rooms have individual passwords, which are written on the backside.


After checking-in, I went to my room to unpack. Our room is located on the 7th floor which is the top floor. We have quite a view!
My roommate was not there yet so I got to pick a bed first. I also took a quick video of our room and the super cool door lock we have. It plays a cute little sound whenever you open and close it.
I spent about 2 hours unpacking, relaxed a bit, and then went down to rent the bed sheet at 1pm, when they opened.

After fixing my bed, I quickly freshened up and ran out to meet Jasmin, who had signed us up for a free make-up class today!
The place we went to is an make-up store named eSpoir and it's located right outside the university. Jasmin had come too early so we spent the waiting time eating waffles and looking around some nearby stores.

 We found some interestingly flavored drinks near the waffle place.

And also some lipsticks that seemed to be inspired by LEGO.

The program Jasmin had signed us up for was the Hallyu Star Makeup Class offered by Visitseoul.net. You can read more about it and/or sign up for it HERE. It was 100% free!
As always for these programs, there is a(n) translator/English speaking guide. The guide today was actually the same guide that took me on the MBC World Tour and the e-Sports Stadium Tour last year. You can read about my experience with those tours HERE.

While the store is downstairs, we went up to the first floor where we were seated around a long table. At the end of the table was one out of three make-up artists, who would be telling us about different products (all from eSpoir) while showing how to apply it on the model. The same products were placed on the long table in front of us so we could have a closer look and try them on.

The guy here spoke in Korean but he was pretty easy to understand. A couple of us had at least some knowledge of Korean but the guide made sure to translate everything anyways for those who did not.
A cool thing about this program is that the make-up style they do changes according to season. We were meant to learn about simple and Long-lasting makeup for hot weather today but since the weather has become autumn-like (according to the Koreans. I disagree. It's still hot), they showed us a look based on what kind of make-up style is trendy right now here in Korea.
These "moist hug" lipsticks are pretty 'in' right now.
And for eyeshadows, "dusty brick" is a clear winner.
The way to use this is to start from the top with either the colour "toasty knit" or "taupe jacket" and then work your way down. The last colour "dusty wood" goes on your cheeks.
After the demonstration, we were handed papers to fill out our make-up preferences. The make-up artists would do all of our makeup based on our replies. At the bottom of the paper were the Instagram names of the artists so we would follow them and ask questions later about the products or the application techniques.
The make-up artist slowly and thoroughly worked through each one of us.


In case you want to follow the make-up artists, here are their Instagrams. First is @dkpark_makeup.

@aiden_parkk
@_nami.beautycrew
In front of the artists was a large variety of products. The girl above was the one who did my make-up and she used the dusty brick eye shadow palette as well as a cushion foundation to give my skin a glowy look.

Here are some pictures of when Jasmin had her make-up done~
Before her turn, she had been going on about how good-looking the guy was so she was really happy to be sat in front of him. I, being the ever-loving and supportive friend, made sure to make funny faces to her in the mirror so she would start laughing and the make-up artist would look at her confused. But because she and I both laughed, so did he. You are welcome, Jasmin.
 And here's her final look! The girl beside her, Margarita, was someone we met there.

And here are some pictures of when it was my turn~

At the end of the class we were each given tourist guide book an a 20% OFF coupon for the eSpoir store.
Jasmin and I discussed whether we should buy the cushion foundation but decided to wait until evening so we could see how well it would last throughout the day. I was planning on coming back to Ewha in the evening before they closed for the day.

We took some selcas/selfies in front of the pretty stone flower wall near Ewha's Uni's main entrance.
The style of our make-up was soft and simple. It doesn't show up on pictures but I had a super pretty glittery golden eyeshadow on.
 These pictures somehow don't look like me and I'm not sure why. I suspect it's because of the camera angle and the make-up style being different from what I usually do.
We took pictures with both of our phones but I wasn't ready for the first picture Jasmin took, which resulted in this. Jasmin said I looked like a model and Joo said it was pretty so I'm including it here as well.
 Jasmin's camera captured the make-up better~

We had about an hour before I had to get on the subway towards Uijeongbu (의정부) to meet my friend Joo (주) and pick up a paper that I needed for tomorrow. In the midst of things being overwhelming, Joo had offered to help me print it. Thank you, Joo.
We decided to spend the time looking around the small shops near my uni and found this shirt with weird English on.
And here's a picture we took in the subway after trying to catch the make-up artists there but ultimately failing. Look at that beautiful coverage, though.

Uijeongbu is about an hour away from where I live. When I arrived, I found this big sign outside the station. For the uninitiated, South Korea and Japan are not on the best terms these days, which has lead to a boycott movement of Japanese products here in Korea. The text below says:
"No Japan,, It protects our pride.
No Japan,, Our jobs are going to increase.
No Japan,, It will be a stepping stone towards peaceful unification"

It had been a long day and I was hungry but thankfully Joo was quick to find a restaurant. That day I had 냉면 (naengmyeon = cold noodles) and meat on the side for dinner.
After eating, we walked around downtown a bit and I got to see a big local market.

Uijeongbu didn't feel so different from Seoul - just a bit more quiet.

We came to these LED flowers and while I was admiring them and trying to take pictures, two middle aged men were half joking to each other, half telling me in Korean that these flowers were actually super special.

In the middle of one of the street downtown, there was this kind of forest area that was built a little higher than the normal ground. There was flowing water and little stone seats made to look like mushrooms. Walking there was such a cool experience and my pictures don't do it justice.
We didn't do anything special during my remaining time in Uijeongbu other than walking around so I could see the city and it got too dark for me to take good pictures so these are the only ones I have left from tonight.

This is a drawing made by a middle school student from a nearby city - It was hanging on a walking path near a road.

And here's a dark picture of a kind of dark road we walked on. It is surprisingly hard to find completely dark places that are not somehow lit up - at least in the Seoul and nearby areas.

That night, I returned to my dorm around 11.30pm. Just like Yonsei's dorm, Ewha's I-House also doesn't have a curfew so we are free to come and leave as we please, which I very much enjoy. I have heard that this is only for international students, though. The dorms hosting Korean students are still enforcing curfews.

The last picture from today is of the present Joo gave me.
A peach and toothpaste.

... Why?

Because a couple of days ago while still living in the guesthouse, I ran out of toothpaste (and bought some new). Thanks to Joo, I have enough toothpaste for the foreseeable future.
The peach is because I told him about how the price level in Korea is generally lower than in Denmark - except for fruit. Fruit is expensive here in Korea and because of this, I don't get to eat as much fruit as I'd like. A very specific but much appreciated gift.


When I came home, I finally met my roommate, Banu. Judging by her name, I'd though she would be Turkish but she is actually German with Turkish parents. We had a good chat before bed and from what I can tell, I think we'll get along well!

Tomorrow will be another eventful day so I better go to bed. Goodnight everyone! See you in my next post!
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