In The Interim—Part 3

01/31/2013 11:22

I'm not a shopaholic. If anything, I'm a go-in-get-out kind of shopper. I have a list, and I stick to it, unless there's a particularly delicious looking food item or electronic. But since this will be the first time I have ever left the east coast, country, and continent, I'm going to do some shopping!


Though I will have a limited amount of space.

A suitcase.

I'll look at shipping, just in case.


I rhymed by accident, so I stuffed it in a poem format. Yeah, it's not good. Anyway! At this moment, to plan for my future spending, I'm holding down two jobs. Let me tell you: my lower half, weakened by my desk chair-potato lifestyle, are now able to withstand 8+ hours of scurrying and standing. Christmas Eve was the longest day of my life. I don't even remember what a free weekend is. I can even believe how many rude customers and sweet old people exist in this world. All I can say is that I'm always thinking about my paycheck and "Only # of hours before I can clock out. You can do it, Jazz."


About learning Korean... It's at a standstill. I think I've said before that I have trouble learning things on my own, and languages is next to math and science. I have the textbook and audio that I've download from Monash University, even four pages of painstakingly penned notes, but it's not sticking. I've got my alphabet and counting down, but for important phrases like "Where is the restroom?" I've got none. Working most of the week doesn't help either. Hopefully I will start picking up Korean when I'm in the language class and forced to communicate outside of class. I hope.


The visa application process has induced a lot of head-scratching for my mother and I. Nothing could be done until Ewha sent the admissions packet, and that was earlier this month. It's been a learning experience. I had to find out who and where I should apply to, because for me, it wasn't spelled out well. I perused the "Preparing to Go" tab on and checked out the Visa/Residence Permit section, which then sent me to the country handbook for Korea.


(Now that I am backtracking to explain this for you, I'm seeing my own mistakes. I heard someone say that hindsight is in 20/20.)


There is a list of documents needed to apply for the D-2 visa. I click the link for more information and I'm redirected to a site typed in Korean. I locate the English button in the top right corner, and read the title: Embassy of the Republic of Korea in the USA. From here I go to "Consular/Visa Service" and then "Visa Issuance." Below is an edited version for D-2 seeking US citizens, specifically in DC, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia. This is where my mom and I had the most confusion, so I'm whacking out the unnecessary information. To see the website in it's original form, click the link.

General requirements for Visa Application

  • A valid passport & a passport copy
  • A completed visa application
  • A passport size photo (2”x 2” color)
  • Fee: $45 for U.S. citizens (Cash or money order only; Pay to the Order: Korean Embassy)
  • Submitting your visa application via mail (Include a self-addressed and pre-paid envelope provided by the U.S. Postal Service Express Mail in order to receive your documents)


D-2 Study Abroad: Those seeking high level education

  • A copy of certificate of business registration
  • Standard admission letter (issuance from the chief dean of a university) specifying the screening decision of scholastic aptitude and finance capability
  • Certificate of the latest scholastic achievement (Official diploma or school transcript)
  • Official Bank Statements


The first section is self-explanatory, but I'm going to say something about the fee. I don't think it's ever a good idea to send cash in the mail. "The mail system be sketch these days, ya know. Can't trust people like you used to." So I opted to do the money order. I don't know if the process is the same in other states, but here, in Virginia, at 7Eleven, you have to pay for a money order in cash. I went the first time to pay with my debit card, but the cashier said only cash was acceptable. I had to make a break for the bank. On top of the $45 fee, there was a fee to get the money order. Crazy business! But it is done.


The second part is what caused the most problem. The admission letter and transcript were a given, but why do they need my bank statement and what in the world is a certificate of business registration? For the former questions, we decided it was to prove that I can afford to do so. Even so, I Sharpied out my account number on the front and back of the pages, because that's highly personal information. The latter question baffled us, so, we just sent the package off to our Jurisdiction Korean Consular Office in Washington, DC (if you don't live in DC, Maryland, Virginia, or West Virginia, go to this page to find your office.)


Three or so days later, I got the most adorable voicemail from a man at the DC office saying I was missing the business registration certificate. He had the lilt in his pronunciation that said "English is not my first language." It was too cute, so I listened to it a few times before informing my mom and emailing Ewha for this mystery document. Several messages later, I received the document this morning and sent it to my mother to fax to the Consular office. It's a really short document that I of course can't read, but apparently it is necessary. So at this point, all I can do is keep working and wait for the man to call again.



Update: February 4, 2013

My visa came in the mail on Friday. I'm glad I didn't screw up! Below is a picture of the envelope I sent with all of my documents. Don't use this address unless you live in DC, Maryland, Virginia, or West Virginia.