I spent a week in Bangkok letting my wallet spill with the overpriced hotels and food around Sukhumvit Rd. It’s the price to pay to avoid Khao San Rd’s real dirty cheapies. I can tell I’m out of travel mode as I’m starting to feel like a bum. I don’t want to spend money moving around too much and really want school to start so I can get working as soon as possible. I’ve spent far more money than I originally planned to at this point since a lot of my destinations have been money drainers (Somaliland, Lebanon, Singapore and Southern Thailand.)
I’ve arrived in the eastern region of Thailand that is made up of a few major cities, including Chon Buri and Pattaya (where I am now) and further south, Rayong. This will be my home for the next month and a half. My TEFL course begins on April 4th in the town of Ban Phe within the Rayong province just about an hour south of here. I’ve decided to stay put in this region. There are a few islands that I can check out and of course the Pattaya nightlife is never boring. I’ll probably head down to the school 4-5 days before the course begins so I can get settled. My accommodation during the course is already taken care of and I’ll be spending most of my free time lesson planning and studying.
There is really no change right now in where I may end up in the coming months. The course will end April 29th and then I’ll have till May 3rd to leave Thailand before my visa runs out. I’m still pretty set on returning to Indonesia to live and work. The pay is less than Thailand but I find that living is much cheaper so my money will go a lot further in Indonesia. I love Thailand, don’t get me wrong, but there are too many distractions here that could cause problems down the road.
I’m submitting an application this week for a volunteer job in Sumatra. It is in the town of Bukit Lawang at an English school. This was where I spent about 5 days in the jungle and had some of the best experiences of my trip so far. It’s a really small tourist village on the river and the job is on a 2 month contract. I can get some experience right out of TEFL certification that will be useful for more competitive jobs down the road. Accommodation and local food is paid for by the school as well as a pretty healthy stipend. After the 2 months I want to head to Jakarta where I have an interview waiting for me at English First. I already know the principle at the school as he is a good friend of someone I know and he is looking for good teachers and assured me my lack of experience shouldn’t’ be an issue. I just have to make sure I hone up on my interview skills. It’s been awhile! I really look forward to any opportunity I get and I can’t believe how ready for work I am again. Scratch that, how ready to TEACH that I am.