Our five weeks as volunteers have come to an end and it is time for us to leave the comfortable life as English teachers (a bed and food on the table every day) and start exploring the rest of Vietnam properly. There have been small cultural changes we have had to get used to, such as poorer levels of hygiene, absence of empathy towards animals and lack of structure and organisation (at least within our Teaching center) but we have learned a lot and we have “delivered” what has been asked from us. We have taught about five lessons each week and therefore been gifted a lot of spare time to relax and explore. We have enjoyed numerous trips to Hanoi (more about that in another blog post), a short trip to the nearby mountains for a picnic and some shopping in many of the local villages surrounding the English center. We have been living together with rats, had water dripping down on our faces from the ceiling when trying to sleep, cleaned out growing mould in the kitchen, plunged toilets filled with turds that refuse to go away, dealt weekly power cuts and taken deep breaths when a lesson we have spent hours preparing for, is changed or cancelled. But, despite these few minor drawbacks, we have a great time here and we have met many interesting people along the way. Teaching the kids and adults has been very rewarding and it will give us many great, long lasting memories. We will, for example always remember all the kids that have replied “I’m fine” to the question “How old are you?” and the countless times they have said “Wooow” when Jack told them he is from England. We are more than happy that we chose to volunteer here and we would like to say thank you so much to Thanh and rest of the Vietnamese crew for having us!
If you are interested in teaching English (and get free food and accommodation) just outside Hanoi – Vietnam then Everest English Center are more then happy to welcome you! You can contact them via their webpage http://everestcenter.org/about-us