Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Advice for new teachers
Looks like it's moving season here in NST. People coming, people going. If you are new to Nakhon, welcome! You've made the right choice. You will soon notice that Nakhon puts the Thai in Thailand. It isn't perfect and can certainly be frustrating. But if you are up for a bit of a challenge and a great adventure, you have found it. With that, I will try and sum up my 2 years here in some timbits of information for you. (I realize most people say tidbits. They are wrong. Timbits are a small, delicious treat....just like these tips)
1-Getting a bike and a house are priority number one. Not being able to drive around the city and explore is a huge disadvantage. Take your time but try and learn. It's worth it. I would also keep like 200 baht locked inside your bike just in case you need it for gas or food sometime.
2-Learn Thai. I can't do it and it has been a disadvantage. There are some English speaking Thai people around town that will surprise you sometimes. For the most part, you are on your own. You will probably stay more than a year and it is worth the effort. Which brings me to point number 3.
3-Stay for more than a year. I was for sure out of here after my contract was up my first year. No question. I liked it here but NST is a little too small for my liking. Then I started thinking. I don't want to go home to a Canadian winter, maybe I will just stay here in paradise for a few more months, have 2 months paid vacation and come back to a house, a bike, friends and an understanding of how things work here.
4-Get out of Nakhon as much as possible. Nakhon is a cool spot, especially for Monday to Friday living. Whenever you get the chance, go to a beach, go to an island, go to another country. It starts to mess with your mind a little and makes you a bit more cynical in my experience. If you are feeling a little down, take a quick trip out of town and enjoy this beautiful country.
5-Start bringing bottles to restaurants and bars if you like drinking but want to keep the cost down. Most places will even pour your drinks for you. Just makes financial sense.
6-Make Thai friends. This seems obvious but tons of people don't have any Thai friends. I don't get it. I've noticed quite a few Thai people around and they are super friendly and want to be your friend. Do it.
7-You will have tons of free time. Start up a hobby. Want to learn to play the guitar? Read 100 books? You have the time, just make the effort.
8-Nakhon is sort of like high school. It is small and people know what other people are up to. Just the way it is, embrace the immaturity.
9-Don't give up. Nakhon can be a tough place to get use to. Make a few friends, try and get into a routine, eat at the same places so people start to recognize you and will start to feel a little more like home. It isn't fair to you or your kids to pack up and leave two weeks in.
10-Have an incredible time. You will make some of the best friends you will ever have here. Thailand is amazing, explore and make some amazing memories!
“Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”