Where does one go when looking for friendly people, great food, amazing culture, and the ability to negotiate for almost anything? Look no further than Vietnam, Thailand and Cambodia.
Back in September 2014 I began an epic journey across SE Asia for an undetermined amount of time. Those of you that know me well enough already know that I love to travel, and for the rest of you reading right now, you will soon find out that among other things I am a travel junkie at heart.
I was bitten by the travel bug as a teenager, yet had never stepped foot on an airplane until I was 18 years old. Since that time, I graduated from college and held had various corporate jobs that have sent me on plenty of domestic trips. Sometimes I was even fortunate enough to go on international trips as well.
International travel is by far my favorite type of travel simply because I know I will get to experience cultures which are
unfamiliar to me, and experience bizarre things such as food, celebrations, modes of transportation, traffic patterns, and languages other than English which is native to me.
The language part of traveling is particularly interesting to me because not only do I enjoy hearing different accents and learning how to say phrases in different languages, part of this journey that I’m currently on will include a four-week certificate course on Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). English is the most prevalent language used in business today across the globe, and statistics confirm that 30% of people in the world are learning English these days. Believe it or not, that number jumps to 50% in the next five years! If you are looking for job security and the freedom to live just about anywhere in the world, you might want consider learning how to teach English.
I enrolled to the TESOL program though the International TEFL Academy and honestly the hardest part about the whole thing was selecting a location to take the course. They offer the four-week course online as well as in-perons in dozens of cities across the world, and I chose one of the programs in SE Asia because it was one of the few options that included travel between countries as part of the package.
If you are interested in learning more about the TESOL program, please email my Admissions Advisor, Doug Waxman, and be sure to mention my name. He will be able to answer all of your questions and get you started with your teaching career!
Next week, myself and a handful of other students who I have yet to meet will start the first two weeks of the TESOL program in Phnom Penh, Cambodia and then finish up the final two weeks of the course in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
So far already on this journey I have been Couchsurfing in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and met up with a fellow traveler there whom I met in Brazil back in 2008 on another global adventure.
After Vietnam I moved into an apartment in Chiang Mai, Thailand for a month, met an awesome group of friends and together we explored the city and attended the yearly Lanna Kathina Robe & Lantern Ceremony, an amazingly rich and vibrant cultural experience. I was then invited back to Vietnam to to attend a traditional Vietnamese wedding and was the only Westerner at the wedding and ensuing celebration.
Somewhere in between I also attended a graduation for a new friend following the completion of their degree in Tourism & Hospitality in Chiang Mai, Thailand. In addition, I also spent a few magical days in the small mountain town of Pai, Thailand and simply fell in love with the place. I only wish I could have stayed longer.
I am currently writing this blog article from the front porch of my beach hut on Koh Rong Island in Cambodia. I figured I'd spend the next week relaxing on white sand beaches before heading to Phnom Penh to start the TESOL program I signed up for several months ago. I am so excited for what the future has in store even though I have no idea what that might be! Please subscribe to my blog or check back often to see what travel adventures I’m up to. Until next time…
barbara opaliski (Saturday, 18 April 2015 10:09)