The one with all the changes

Along with almost 30 other people, I was one of those who didn’t have a placement sorted at first. Or ever. Whatever.

When everyone else had left for their placements and after all of those heartfelt goodbyes, I went to bed (got very little proper sleep the night before). I was woken up by my flatmate Jami saying we had to be in the café at 3pm for some meeting. Dazed and confused, I went and saw all the other “rejects” gathered. In came Jerry and Kevin, two Chinese dudes who claimed to be the answer to all our problems. “We’ve got many schools in the south! Who wants to go south?”

Being the eager person that I am, only wanting a frickin placement asap, I said I did. 11am the next day, 18 of us rushed to a train taking us from Beijing to Guangzhou in 22h. Once arriving on Monday, those with placements went off to theirs, and left behind 10 of us, who were fortunate enough to be heading to Shenzhen in a mini minivan. A shower and some sleep was a luxury we were not granted, but we did get to see a bunch of schools and do a lot of interviews as soon as we got to Shenzhen. Being “black” wasn’t really benificial, so it took a while to get placed, but by Friday we found Shenzhen Oriental English College, where Charlie, Sigrid and me would be teaching from there on.

Many things in our contract with TTC were not upheld, such as individual rooms (Sigrid & I shared), kitchen, TV, DVD, mandarin lessons and in Charlie’s case also electricity, toilet and I don’t know if it was in the contract, but I’m sure tiles are not supposed to be randomly dropping onto your balcony… Despite all of this, we pulled through and taught as well as we could. Sure, there were difficulties, and rather tough weeks at times, but everything got a lot better once weekend arrived and it was time to visit Anja & Emma in Foshan. Wiie.

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