Why China?

I’ve been asked a lot of questions lately about my current plans, most common: why China?

This is not an easily answered question as there are many factors involved in my decision. For one, Asia is a continent I have never stepped foot on and I have a goal of visiting every continent in my lifetime; this would bring me to my third. I live in North America and have traveled on two different occasions to Europe.

Experiencing life in a third world country would be a brand new experience as well and another factor. Aside from the aforementioned places, I’ve been on numerous family cruises to various islands in the Caribbean. These experiences were all luxury type vacations which is not what I am looking for at this time in my life. I would like to live in a place where I can experience a life with different challenges than my own. Where my services can be opening doors into the futures of those I encounter.

All the places I have lived for extended times have been either a democracy, monarch, or a combination of the two. I’ve never visited a communist country let alone lived in one for a year. I find this to be an intriguing factor in my adventure because I am learning what it is like to be a human all across our world.

During my college years, I took a few history classes with Dr. Parssinen who taught me a bit about Chinese history. There is a vast amount of it, but we focused on the Opium Wars for our Narcotic Drugs in Modern Society class. From the Opium Wars to the Silk Road and Marco Polo to the number of dynasties – it is all fascinating. Living on this side of the world will give me the opportunity to learn so much more.

So you see, there are a lot of things that draw me to China; the history, language, culture, political standings, and geographical location in Asia. Just like a cherry on top of the metaphorical sundae, China also pays well and holds teachers in high social regard.

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Teaching English Abroad

Good afternoon travelers! Have any of you taught english abroad? What countries have you worked in? What was it like? I’m very interested in participating in an opportunity of this nature and need some real information, not just some website that could or could not be a scam. I’m looking for people that have been through the TEFL course and interview process and have already taught abroad or are teaching abroad now. Is that you? Do you have any advice or suggestions?

I’m curious about the cost of the TEFL course, what countries are the best, and where you found the jobs that ultimately hired you. Also, how much money did you leave your home country with and how much did you return with? What kinds of things did you learn?

Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel By: Rolf Potts

     ‘Vagabonding is about gaining the courage to loosen your grip on the so-called certainties of this world. Vagabonding is about refusing to exile travel to some other, seemingly more appropriate, time of your life. Vagabonding is about taking control of your circumstances instead of passively waiting for them to decide your fate.” – Rolf Potts writes in Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel

Rolf Potts’ explanation of vagabonding is absolutely on point. Forget about social networks and lavish apartments, embrace the realness of the world around you. As you sit there in your chair millions of wondrous things are occurring in different places around the world, don’t you want to experience the spectacle?

Vagabonding is about letting go of the things that hold you back from these experiences. Refusing to believe that the world has borders that cannot be broken; embracing your inner citizen of the world. Go on youtube and look at some satellite footage from NASA or any other reputable source. Look at how the land is aglow with light, the water dark and vast. Marvel in that glorious sight. Did you notice any borders? Anything except water separating us from one land to another?

Refusing to let your circumstances hold you back from any dreams you hold, vagabonding preaches minimalism. If you really want to spend a long period of time traveling the world that is set out for us, then stop putting so much emphasis on the ties holding you back and cut back on your spending. Live frugally where you are and save. Prove to yourself that you deserve this trip. Nothing good ever comes easy, but it is proven to always pay off in memories. If you can’t afford expensive trains or taxis, walk you’ll see much more.

Don’t sit by and let life hand you whatever it chooses, grab life by the balls and decide your own fate. At the core, I believe that is the spirit of vagabonding, deciding your own fate and living it through. Experiencing as much as you can and sharing your insight with all those interested. I think the hardest part for me will be not getting too attached to any one place. There is so much to see and I’ve only got one life to see it.

He also gives many resources for cheap travel, work abroad, and other valuable information that you can find in his book. I purchased it at Barnes and Noble for $15 but for all you bargain hunters I’m sure you can find a steal. I’m not trying to sell you anything but it’s a lot of information that I’m not ready to get into quite yet. This is just some thoughts I had after reading halfway, once I finish the book I will give you a proper synopsis.

Until next time bloggers, remember, vagabonding isn’t a verb it is a state of mind so go suck the marrow out of life!

xxx Sam