Crossroads

I have always had a keen interest in taking up teaching as a career. A side of me always had a desire to be a trainer of some sorts; instructing, demonstrating and educating.

3 days after my reservist training ended, I went on a trip to Thailand. It wasn’t a planned trip. I had no itinerary.
The only things I had booked were my flight tickets and my accommodation. I prepared a sum of money for my expenditure, though I didn’t really intend to spend much.

Sometimes it really takes an extra step of faith to venture beyond our island’s shores, because you never know what you might find. I had the opportunity to meet up with a fellow Singaporean in Bangkok. He claimed that he has been teaching in Thailand for more than a decade, and now runs his own education consultancy firm. He is looking for more Singaporeans to help him in his firm, as well as to fulfill a vision that he has started.

My skepticism made me run a “background check” on this guy, and I managed to find information (dating all the way back to 2004) about him from reputable clubs in SMU and Boys Brigade. I know this guy is real.

What happened over the next few days were several exchanges over emails, and an “interview” over coffee at Starbucks.

It came down to this: I was offered a job as an English teacher in Thailand.

Initially, I didn’t feel that there was a need to tell everyone about it, especially when the selfish me feels that whatever happens in my life should be none of anybody’s concern. However, as I slowly began to open up and share more about my future plans, I have been getting various forms of encouragement from my friends and mentors, and it was heartening to know that I have their support.

Of course, there were a few concerns raised about my safety, my adaptability, how challenging it would be for me.. I understand these concerns but I also feel that there is a need for me to venture out, and not just be a frog in the well here. Will Thailand be a mistake? Things are uncertain and I can’t guarantee everything will be smooth-sailing, but what I do know is that I don’t intend to settle down here in Singapore for sure.

Right now, I am still in the midst of deciding which school to commit my first year in, and the administrative procedures will also take place over the next few months. However, the school term starts in the middle of May, so I should expect to be gone from May onwards.

If time permits, I will probably throw a farewell party for myself.

And until then, the next 5 weeks will be quite exciting.