My Life in Songdo

by Briana Benson, 14/12/2011

“Did you see that?” I ask my friends while driving to work, as my eyes glance at another tower and high-rise being completed. I have now been living in Songdo-dong, Incheon, South Korea for a year and a half. I have never witnessed such speed and excellence in an entire city being built right before my eyes!

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Before I came to live in this brand new “city,” many questions flooded my mind about what my life was going to be like: would Chadwick International School be as good as I thought it would, what were the people I was going to meet be like, and what sort of lifestyle lay ahead? Was the life balance that I wanted--hard work, exercise and a satisfying social situation-- going to be possible on this new piece of constructed land? After living in Songdo for more than a year, all of my questions have been answered in the affirmative!

Korea has not only proven itself to be a wonderful and pleasant place to live, but a fabulous land in which to seek out adventures. Surrounded by mountains, ocean and islands, Songdo allows me the opportunity to explore all the beautiful landscapes nearby where I can swim, hike, bike and snowboard.

On weekends, I hop in my car and head to gorgeous national parks to explore temples, hike to waterfalls, swim in rivers and just relax in nature. The ease of traveling and the relatively small size of South Korea allow the opportunity to taste a variety of regional cuisines. Songdo is constantly being invaded with new traditional Korean restaurants and a variety of international cuisine is on the rise.

The Korean friendly personality in Songdo and throughout, allows the comfort to interact with locals and enjoy their ancient and traditional culture, while living in a technologically advanced city. Chadwick International School is wired with fiber optic cables and has Tele-presence capability, allowing us to connect with the rest of the world. Every student has their own laptop computer and much of the teaching is done with computer programs and utilizing the internet.

With Korea being the wonderful playground it is, Chadwick International School is my home away from home. Being a part of the founding faculty of this amazing school and having the opportunity to help shape the minds of the children, minds of the future, is truly rewarding. Living here in Songdo, Incheon, I get the best of both worlds: a beautiful school to work in and a city that provides a clean, friendly environment with excellent restaurants and spacious parks; and yet outdoor adventures are close by.

Author: Briana Benson is a teacher at Chadwick International, which is located in Songdo, Incheon.

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