My logic in life, as a general rule, has always been this:
If you don’t like it, don't do it.
I realized this at a young age and I told my mother when I was 16 that I was going to earn no money and live in a box.
Imagine the trouble I put that poor woman through!
This, at a time when we were talking about what I was going to do with my life, and the idea of getting a job working 40 hours a week on someone else's agenda for 40 years until I could retire my achy back and watch 2060 digital entertainment until my last dying breathe was, yes, I’m going to use the D-word: hopelessly Depressing!
"I'd rather live in the street!" (And it was a lie.)
But this also at a time when I hadn't yet heard the world talking about how how hopelessly depressing the global culture of consumerism is. I thought I was alone in my skepticism.
I look back now and see that by moving to my box and “quitting" the monetary system- which to me looks like a bad human joke- I wanted to absolve myself of my responsibility. Now I’d like to own up to it.
I’m going to write with an open heart and tell you my end game with Open Shores English.
I am not "a teacher".
No more than you are, she is, he is, or my unborn child is.
(no, no bun in the oven, Fam. Speaking figuratively here. I’m just saying (s)he’ll teach me so much.)
We learn from everyone.
There are just some people whose lessons of which we are more receptive.
And no one is going to follow me anywhere if what I talk about isn’t what I’m about.
And Open Shores English is a space for us to learn together.
My presence here is not meant to stifle your growth.
For this reason, over the course of the next year, I want to uncover the truth behind my experience around the world, earning fluctuating salaries for doing different jobs half-heartedly and inconsistently, the hard lessons I had a difficult time admitting to myself that I hadn’t really learned yet and the hope that people have given me simply by being present in the space we share.
I’d also like to address:
-white privilege in the ESL community,
-my perception of travelers' “love for travel” and then their contradictory claim of also loving the planet,
-the difficulty of accepting the concept of conservation and the field of science as legitimate vehicles for change in our relationship with the planet,
-the truth behind charging students who can pay and giving our services (of varying quality) for free to others
-and the sense of shared responsibility, guilt, and solutions to the latter (guilt), which I am exploring- and invite you to explore with me- now.
If you’re reading and thinking- narcissist! She only talks about herself!- to this I say… well, you should read my real diary.
I only share what is here with the honest faith that it will resonate with you, that you will even have pushback and have the courage to engage with me and tell me I’m wrong, to help me grow as a person and to tell me in what ways I’m lying to myself about my service to the world.
Just trying to make the best use of my time while I’m here, and the Internet is incredibly empowering, as is written language (and thank Google for Google Translate!)
Thank you for your thoughts and your participation in the conversation.