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“The world begins where the road ends”: Realizations after a year abroad

One of the first things I remember about planning to travel the world before I left to do so many years ago was mentally listing all of the things I was afraid of. They were numerous. Would drug smugglers hide illegal stuff in my backpack at the airport unbeknownst to me? Would hand-sized spiders eat me in my sleep? Would I be able to get by without knowing the local language?

Teachers don’t make a lot of money, especially early childhood teachers who, arguably, have a an important job towards creating a harmonious society.

I’ve met all kinds of people in all kinds of places. One of my favourite places in the world is Chiang Mai. My favourite because I don’t need a point of reference to know that I love it. I’m just free to love it. It doesn’t inspire me to travel to yet unexplored parts, it inspires me to stay. For its spirit but also for solid practical reasons.

Do you want to live and teach English internationally? Eric Haeg, Course Director at TEFL Campus Phuket* in Thailand, is a veteran in the industry and he’s shared some valuable infor-mation and insight about how to get started. ESL101 asked Eric some questions that are critical to anyone interested in teaching English abroad.

I’ve experienced many relationships whilst travelling. I’ve created them, forged them, negotiated them, deconstructed them, unravelled them, fought them, dissected them, systematically destroyed them, sewn them back together, acquiesced to them. Relationships with food, nature, people, myself, money, security, fear, pain, loss, and grief–dear sweet grief. That’s what travelling does.

There’s an idea out there that long term travelers are constantly on holiday. I understand why it appears that way. One minute I’m in Vietnam motorbiking through the mountains and in the next moment I am in Thailand swimming in lagoons far too magical to be real and writing blogs about places I never knew existed a year ago.

Be careful what you ask for. Not just because you might get exactly what you want and few things are more heartbreaking than that, but you may not actually know what it is you’re asking for. That’s the heartbreak bit.

It’s uncomfortable, dangerous, and it costs money. But it will take you under the seas, over the mountains, and through yourself. To travel is the best decision I’ve ever made and I’ll make it a thousand times more. Because of travel, I’ve managed to cram about a hundred mini lives into my given one.

I’ve been in Southeast Asia a long time. So long that when I thought about writing my next blog, indicators you’ve travelled in Southeast Asia a long time, I was a bit stumped. I thought about it as I took a shower and delighted in the ease at which I can go from toilet to sink to shower all in the same space. And later, as I walked down a tiny soi somewhere in old town Chiang Mai.

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