1.4 Spring 2020 (COVID Archives)

March 6


The Seoul Office of Education has finally taken pity on its foreign teachers and decreed that we only have to work four days of the next two weeks, days to be determined by the school.

I didn’t know this until C popped in around noon to share the good news. At first I naively believed that the VP finally got tired of my pitiable form drifting through the empty school hallways like a ghost. But twas the government that surprisingly decided so.

C needed to use my computer to log my “telecommuting” days but coulnd’t because my computer came from the dinosaur days. I didn’t have to say anything for her to conclude “I will talk to IT about your computer”. I had visions of destroying it not unlike this to stop the madness.

Now, though… what to do? We are supposed to work from home but it’s common knowledge that our desk warming days don’t require any work at all. One teacher said, “I guess I’ll just telecommute Netflix from home”. Regardless, I’m glad that at least some absurdity was recognized in that fact that all teachers but foreign ones were sent home to work to stay safe.

I don’t have a desk at my studio apartment (or a table) so I need to figure out a real work place in order to continue my roll with the teaching program. I can tell you right now I will not be able to maintain the same level of concentration sitting on the floor of my apartment as I am at school with a desk and printer.

Is the local library open? Does it have internet? Am I allowed to be there? The biggest shock about Korean unis was that their libraries close early and even on weekends. It is assumed students will rent out private study rooms or go to coffee shops; it’s a lot more common to find twenty four hour cafes than a library open past 5PM. That’s why most people study or work at cafes. I could also check off another bucket list item and use a computer at the PC room– but I hear that it’s much easier to pick up the virus there. Best to avoid, then.

Cafe every day.

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