After six years of college, you’d think I would be a teacher by now, right?! I always get flack when I say I am not a teacher, because technically I am, but I am not getting to use the skills I have learned in my classroom of three year olds. Many of you probably know how difficult it is to even be considered for an interview. If you have no connections you’re basically screwed. After being at my daycare for a year and a half, I really began to feel stuck. In March, I finally made a connection with a charter school in Boston and I was thrilled! They offered me a job, but it was a fellowship position that was substitute teacher pay. If I wanted to live in a box, it would have been perfect, but unfortunately for my living requirements, it wasn’t nearly enough. I declined the offer, even though I had fallen in love with the school, and asked them to keep me in mind for the fall.
Then out of nowhere, something fell right into my lap without having to put much work into it. Kristen had just gotten back from visiting her friend, Alicia, in Thailand. I kept saying how much I would love to teach abroad, like Alicia was doing, and Kristen encouraged me to send Alicia my resume. When Alicia got back to the States, I did just that and I was offered a job two days later! After weighing the pros and cons with my parents, and talking to my best friend from college whose wedding I was supposed to be in, I finally said, “I’ll kick myself forever if I don’t do this.” I think I knew from the second I got the email with the job offer that I would go. I have a gut feeling that this is what I need at this time in my life. Although there is so much that I will miss here, it is time to go. Time to wander. There is absolutely nothing tying me down, so why wouldn’t I go? So, accept is what I did. I told my job that I would be leaving them in October, told Em that we needed to find someone to take over my lease, and began looking for flights.
Soon after, I booked a one-way ticket to Bangkok and the trip became very official. On October 26th at 1:30 AM, I will be leaving JFK on a 16 hour flight to Hong Kong. 16 hours?! Is that even possible you ask? I guess I will find out. All I know is that the plane better have comfy seats, good (enough) food, and plenty of movies. But that’s not all.. There is a three hour layover in Hong Kong, then a three hour flight to Bangkok. I mean, I enjoy flying, but I can picture this being an awful 24 hours! It will be October 27th at 11:10 AM in Thailand when I arrive, and I will be 11 hours ahead of the east coast. Someone from the school will pick me up from the airport and then an hour drive to Chon Buri, my new home for six months (or more if I decide to extend my stay).
Recently, I found out devastating news about my best friend, to the point where I seriously contemplated cancelling my trip. My mind kept going back and forth, but how could I possibly figure out what was the right thing to do? Deciding to still go to Thailand has been one of the most difficult decisions I have ever had to make. I may end up regretting going, but I may also regret if I stayed. Only time will tell. A situation like this really makes me see that I am not a child anymore and life isn't meant to be a walk in the park. Sometimes I would love to put myself back in middle school where the hardest decision to make was what movie to go see on a Friday night. But, Erica has been incredibly strong through all of this so far, and I know that not much will be different when I return. Hope is my new favorite word.
Even though the the last couple of months have been crazy, the next year will definitely give me a run for my money! I figured I might as well share this time in my life, so I’m giving this blog a shot. I am by no means a great writer (or even a good one at that), but what better way to keep up with me while I’m gone?! To really get what I am going through, I feel that a simple Facebook status and pictures with small descriptions just won’t do. I want to share my experiences with my family and friends in detail, but it will be difficult to constantly Skype to fill them in. Insert blog. This is also for those who are curious about what it is like to teach and live in a culture-shock of a country like Thailand, or even for those who feel stuck like me and are contemplating following their dreams in a foreign country. I don’t leave for two more months (66 days to be exact, not like I'm counting) but I also want to share some moments in my life leading up to my departure, as well as more information about Thailand as I learn myself. If my adventures in Thailand are important enough to share, the build-up before I go is too!
So, this is your official invitation to follow me as I wander. Follow me through my ups and downs, my successes and flops, my confidence and insecurities, my happiness and homesickness. Follow me as I meet new people, see new places, teach ESL for the first time, ride an elephant bareback, and so much more. I hope to learn about myself as I go and I can't wait to share these experiences!