I was at a Warriors basketball game (thanks for the free tickets Clay) with my friend tracy when she mentioned she was looking into moving to Thailand to teach english. My original reaction was that sounds awesome! Then she asked me if I wanted to go with her and I told her that would be crazy! I was in the middle of interviewing for jobs to start my corporate career and had a great serving job and place to live, so it didn’t make sense to me at first. Tracy ended up emailing me a blog to read anyways, Kate From the States. I immediately was intrigued after reading Kate’s blog and watching some of her videos.
I started researching living in Thailand and what it was like to teach there. After talking with Tracy, I decided it wouldn’t hurt to apply to the program Kate went through and see what happens. Little did i know that the program basically accepts everyone because there is a shortage of english teachers in Thailand. We both received acceptance emails that week and did a phone interview with the company. At this point I started getting really nervous because all I had to do was say yes and I could be off to Thailand. You do a short training for a TEFL certificate, then they give you a job and a place to live. We decided to do more research and talk to friends before we said yes. We learned that we did not get to choose the city we wanted to teach in after the training and this made us very hesitant. After loooong thought, we decided to look into other TEFL courses where we could go off and find our own job in a city “we” wanted to live in (I think that we were trying to think of reasons not to take the plunge).
The next week I had a phone interview for a job with an awesome start-up in San Francisco. One of the interview questions they asked was “What is one thing that you wish you could change within the last year?” I thought about it for a minute and replied that i wish I would have taken more time to travel and see more of the world. I ended up getting off of the phone and started thinking about that question and my answer. I realized that it wasn’t too late to travel and see more of the world! I contacted Tracy and told her that I wanted to go to Thailand, but that I wanted to see all of Southeast Asia. In order to do this we wouldn’t be able to teach. Tracy was not too keen on the idea at first because she wanted to be making money while she was away. After talking with her more, she agreed.
A week after my phone interview with the company, I received an email from them with follow up questions about myself. I regretted to inform them that although I really wanted a job with the company, I decided that I should take time to travel. I was nervous to receive a response from them and wasn’t sure if i would receive a response at all. I ended up getting a response back and the email was surprisingly awesome! They told me that my email put a big smile on their face and that I won’t regret my decision to travel. They told me to enjoy it and offered to reconnect when I returned from my trip. It really confirmed that traveling was the right decision and thus the planning began…