About Kimchi Dreadlocks

So after much debate about what to do with myself post college, I decided to fly halfway around the world to try my hand teaching english in Korea. I wish I could say my decision wasn’t fueled by financial need, but the truth of the matter is college loans are real and this man has more than his fair share. Why Korea? Simply put, no where else seemed easier to apply for and get into. Originally I wanted to make it to Spain–that is until I realized that the luster of living in a beautiful Spanish city would fade as soon as I went broke. While it would have been possible to “sustain” myself, the possibility of bringing back money to the U.S. was pretty much nill.

My second choice was Chili. I found a great teaching opportunity that included a writing internship. This, I thought, would be perfect: teach a little english, expand my resume, make a little money and continue my Spanish language studies. There was only one problem: the deadline for the program was less than a week away from when I originally found the job posting. Even with stock letters of recommendation and the fastest courier service, there was no way in hell I was going to be able to get the paperwork in on time. Hence, scratch Chili.

Then while cruising the vast GoAbroad website, I came across a posting for teaching in Korea. A new recruitment wave was beginning and all that was needed to start the application process was a couple letters of recommendation and an application. Done and done! Less than two weeks after I found the posting I had a recruiter picked out and my mind was set  on getting to Kimchiland.

Truth be told, this will without a doubt be my biggest cultural challenge.  I’ve been blessed to do quite a bit of traveling over the years, but with this being my first trip to Asia, and being that I know absolutely nothing about the Korean language (yet), I’m sure I’ll struggle a bit at first before ultimately settling in.

Dreadlocks in the ROK is meant to be my half-assed attempt to put my Journalism degree to work while working to pay for it. I have no set theme, nor  will I attempt to push some bullshit agenda. My hope is to generate some interesting content and maybe pick a fight or two with other K-bloggers whom I both love and loathe. That being said, I do have a soft spot in my heart for anything hip-hop and will most likely blog from time to time on any perceived aspects of hip-hop in Korea.

My contract is for one year in the coastal city of Busan (or Pusan) and the plan is to bounce around Asia as much as possible during and after my time in the R.O.K. Good times will be had and hopefully good stories will be published. Enjoy!



10 Responses to “About Kimchi Dreadlocks”

  1. Ronald King September 24, 2010 at 11:34 PM #

    Just joined. Looking for other folks in Korea.

  2. BwadMon September 27, 2010 at 9:32 AM #

    Hey Jay,

    I came across your blog following a link from Mr. Wonderful and I have to say I stumbled upon something good here. The posts that you have so far are really well written and read as such.

    I will look forward to reading more about your experiences while teaching in Korea and would also like to wish you all the best in your future endeavors.

    And for an offshore question, how long did it take you to grow out your dreads? I am currently in the baby dreads phase and already see a long road ahead. Any feedback is appreciated.


    • Jaywoodseyo September 27, 2010 at 1:07 PM #

      Thanks for the compliment Bwadmon. My dreads? I’m somewhere in between four and five years. And yes, my friend. The road ahead is long and treacherous, that is, if you decide to stick it out. I will say, however, that if you make it through the baby dreads phase–when they have finally locked up–it gets easier to deal with them. The best advice I can give you is to make sure you get them re-tightened regularly. Not only will they look better, but your hair will grow faster. This is something I’m terrible at. I failed to mine done before I dipped off to Korea and when I finally got them done last week, the new growth was damn near an inch long, making for a very painful re tightening process. That’s all I got champ. Thanks for stopping by and keep the comments coming.

    • Jaywoodseyo September 27, 2010 at 1:42 PM #

      Thanks or the comment BwadMon,
      My dreads? I’m somewhere in between the fourth and fifth year. And yes my friend, the road ahead is long a treacherous, that is if you decide to stick it out. I will say however that it gets easier once you make it out of the baby stage and you r hair actually locks up. Also, make sure you get em tightened regularly. This is something I haven’t been good at. It not only makes your dreads look fresh but it keeps your hair growing. Before I managed to get mine done last week I was well over two months with almost an inch of new growth. The shit hurt like hell when I finally got them tightened. Keep the comments coming champ.

      • rebekah March 27, 2011 at 1:02 AM #

        i got dreads too. its been about 4yrs!

        wow. ive been reading your blog and you seem like a really cool person. I’m glad you are having fun in korea.

        it sounds like you have had quite the adventure. I am new to korea and am looking for some cool people to hangout with since I’ve been having a hard time making friends since my school is small and my co teachers are much older. there is one young person but she’s got a korean bf so she never seems to want to hangout. anyway, just trying to make new friends. I don’t have a blog just fb so if I don’t seem to much of a freak to you please shoot me an email on fb or whatever. itd be nice to talk to someone who lives here and is friendly and open minded.



  3. Ed Campbell February 4, 2011 at 6:50 PM #

    Wow, another dreadlock in Korea, in Dongrae busan no less…Nice to see the blog…Hit me up on facebook! I have been in and outta here for years, im married here, in a professional band and part of a club in Kyungsung etc etc…hope your time here is going well!


  4. Mizaru April 12, 2011 at 2:29 PM #

    This is where the work gets done: Submit only your top stuff.

  5. Ed April 14, 2011 at 5:03 PM #

    Hi there,

    I stumbled upon your blog while surfing around blogs about Korea and loved your writing.
    I operate a little site for expats in Korea called hiexpat.com.
    I’d love it if you allow me to publish your blog posts on hiexpat.com blogs.
    Each re-published blog will have a link back to your blog.

    Please let me know by emailing.

    Hope to hear from you soon.

  6. Andrew July 5, 2011 at 10:10 PM #

    Didn’t really know where else to put this… I met you in Busan during the SandFestival and I mention it in this post —>


    Keep on Living.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: