Guilin: Adaptation Mode

photo by Bill Kyzner
photo by Bill Kyzner

Previous to the past year, the idea of me teaching was always met with “I don’t want to do that”, but a year of traveling changed my mind and now here I am, and I can honestly say that so far I enjoy teaching. Crazy as it is, with only a one month certificate, I find myself in front of a classroom (25 classrooms to be exact) doing what I can to teach English and make the 30 or 40 min classes as fun as they can be.

Going back to work after a full year of traveling has required some mental work. Although I only work 4 and a half hours a day, the way the schedule is distributed feels like a full time job. The days start with classes in the morning from 9 am to 11 (or 11:30 am). Once done I go back home for a two or three hour break, then on to the next school in the afternoon for another set of classes. The catch is that I work in 5 different schools (3 kindergartens, 1 primary school and 1 high school), which means quite a bit of commuting from one place to the next; this definitely is a negative point to the contract I have now.

With my head in adaptation mode, the first month flew by. And, a part from teaching, it has also been a month of learning how to do the “normal” things in a city where most people don’t speak English; paying bills ( cellphone, internet, rent, etc.), buying train tickets and getting around on the public bus has required assistance from the TAs. I have, however, started my Chinese classes which, hopefully, will help me get around and communicate with people here.

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2 thoughts on “Guilin: Adaptation Mode

  1. I was in Guilin last year, but just passing by on a backpacking trip. It was a beautiful city but I can’t imagine the challenges/adaptations needed to actually live somewhere with so few foreigners. Best of luck to you! 🙂

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