I've been teaching in my school for about 3 weeks now and I am exhausted! Who knew that teaching in 35 degree heat to a group of 50 odd students who laugh everytime you say 'okay' would be this tiring?
The first day was terrifying. The other teachers kept asking 'why so serious?', but when I explained I was nervous they just casually told me 'don't worry about it'. So I didn't. And they went really well! The kids were pretty much in shock when I walked into their classroom, it's hard to imagine what they find so intriguing about Westerners. But it is quite nice to be told you're beautiful everyday by your classes! And other teachers!
I feel slightly guilty that my Thai is so limited. Students sometimes come up to me at the end of classes but I have no idea what they are trying to tell me. It's getting better though (I guess and use sign language).
At first we were getting taken out of school for lunch and eating huge meals of many different dishes until we felt like we were going to explode (Thai people can eat like no other, it's unbelievable that they are so skinny). But as we have settled into more of a routine it seems that the canteen is where we will be getting our meals, which for about 25baht (50p) you can't really complain-and they are delicious!
I have to be in school before 8am and classes finish at 3.30pm, so the days are long. I am enjoying it though, apart from the odd naughty class who I have no idea how to discipline as they have no interest in learning to speak English. I can understand but it doesn't make it any less frustrating. The teachers and school in general though are so friendly and kind they have made us feel really welcome.
The evenings can sometimes be quite hard. We live in a very remote area with not a lot going on (not even a 7/11 which I still can't get over). One of the teachers has kindly given us a scooter to use to get around, which we are slowly learning to drive and hoping to be a lot happier to come and go as we please, feeling slightly more independant. We are discovering more every day and slowly mastering the publiic bus system to Krabi and Surat Thani so we can return to civilisation on Saturday and Sunday! I will have to blog about our weekend adventures separately...or maybe not at all, it tends to get a bit crazy and I don't know who's bothering to read these blogs!