All work, no play, dull boy

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Stephen Another ICT teacher is very sick so now I have to work from 8am to 9:30pm every day!

I just received a phone call from VAS confirming that due to teacher illness I have to work the rest of the week from 8am. I can now only hope he is back to normal before Monday.

Great for the pocket, viagra order but really bad for my mental and physical health.

On top of that my other school, disinfection VUS, keeps asking me to substitute for them. Last night I had to teach a ‘Backpack’ class, which is 10-12 year olds with limited English. The class is mostly colourful pictures, games and basic singing and chanting. I hated it, and I’ve told the school that I won’t teach at that level, but Administration pleaded that “there is no other native teacher available”. I won’t agree to a Backpack class again.

It is a juggling act to keep the scheduling teams on my side (in case things get slow later in the year and I need to ask for favours) as well as taking care of myself.


Vietnamese food is so plentiful, cheap and healthy, and there is always a lot of great fruit to eat, so nutrition is not a problem.

With the things going on at home, the upcoming exams and lesson planning for two schools, lack of sleep is definitely a real issue. I’m also beginning to understand why it is not so easy to have a social life here. My current workload challenges seem not dissimilar to those faced every day by the people I meet regularly – the Vietnamese students and teachers. When I do get more than an hour spare here or there, I find that all I want to do is eat, drink and sit quietly, contemplating the passing traffic. I crave one full day at home alone. Going out, or doing something more organised is not so enticing right now.

I am acutely aware that I have not really seen Vietnam outside my school walls and the roads I take to and from work. I want to take a week off before the end of November and go see Da Lat, Nha Trang, Hue, or even Cambodia or Sa Pa again, but I don’t even have time to plan that.

Now for some good news.

  • My iPhone rocks. πŸ™‚
  • My regular TA (teacher assistant) nearly fell off his chair when I told him how old I was.


    He honestly thought I was about 30 (this is after I’ve been getting only 4-5 hours sleep a night for the last week) and wanted to know how I had so much energy and looked so good. I said I was just lucky with genes, and perhaps all that Pomelo is helping. He thinks it’s because I always smile at everyone (I really didn’t think I smiled that much).

Ah, it’s nice to be around these people. πŸ™‚