Pro and Cons compared

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To The Editor:
Although I was born in New York City, I was raised in Halcottsville and am no doubt a local. Growing up in the Catskill Mountains provided me with an incredible childhood, which shaped me into the adventurer I am today. In addition to the many wooded wanderings, my family spent a good amount of time exploring the city. It was these trips that showed me there was so much more to the world than Delaware County could offer me.
Almost two years ago, I moved to South Korea with my boyfriend, Brandon, to teach English. Our current plan is to spend three years in total here. In that time we will be able to completely pay off our student loans, an amount exceeding $60,000 from our time spent at state universities.
Here is where we start to see some issues with the current political situation in the U.S. It took moving to the other side of the world for two bright young individuals to be able to create a life that was both comfortable and proactive — as opposed to struggling in the U.S., where we were put on 25-year plans to become debt free.
As the U.S. government shut down, we were able to watch from a comfortable distance. Lucky for us, embassies are considered “essential.” What did hit close to home was the argument of health care. Because as the decisions were being made for the shut down, Brandon was laying in a hospital with a nasty case of pneumonia. As a group of elected US officials chose to make life harder for a huge amount of their own people, the South Korean government paid for more than 80 percent of a foreigner’s hospital bill.
I’m not saying that Korea has it all figured out, every place has its pros and its cons. But right now the cons outweigh the pros in the U.S. So Brandon and I are going to continue to see what other options we have. After Korea we plan on more adventures, exploring the rest of the world. You can follow us along by visiting Twelve365.com.
In the meantime, go drink some Hubbell cider and carve a pumpkin. Enjoy those pros that I really do miss.

Kelsey Riordan,
Yeoju, South Korea