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Can you ever go back ?
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An ESL/EFL teacher can't return after...
2 years
8%
 8%  [ 2 ]
4 years
0%
 0%  [ 0 ]
6 years
13%
 13%  [ 3 ]
10 years
8%
 8%  [ 2 ]
Can always get back into the rat race
69%
 69%  [ 16 ]
Total Votes : 23

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william wallace



Joined: 14 May 2003
Posts: 2869
Location: in between

PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kinda like this scenario:

Yr 1: Hey,guys let me tell ya what happened to me....

Yr3: Hey,haven't seen you in ages,oh Marg moved where? I didn't know that!

Yr 6: But that's not how it is in X country; 2 friends moved away,one passed away.How do you get a job now ?

This is just a tad of my meaning...with scenarios wide open (but the ever growing estrangement to the forgotten home country and the never total acceptance into the foreign host country/ies (especially multiple countries)
I met a few real old timers, and they came across as lost souls (one 26years, the other 54 years)

Take "Tom" started ESL in Japan in 1951 and stayed there until about 1964, moved to Singapore till 1975, and did bouts in Thailand, Hong Kong and now he's been in mainland China since 1995.There is absolutely nothing for him back in Canada (all deceased). All the countries he's lived in have altered to such a degree that they're alien to him .I see him and the other fellow as the end product of a man with no country.Turkey was somewhere in there. He had told me that after 20 years he wanted to go back so much, but while briefly back in Canada; it was as strange as any other exotic location. So he went back to Japan, but by then ESL was a booming industry mostly for the youth, and while he was able to get employment, Japanese society was too different, and he was competing with those a third his age.
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Sherri



Joined: 23 Jan 2003
Posts: 749
Location: The Big Island, Hawaii

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

naturegirl321 wrote:
[What made you decide to go back?


Lots of things. First of all, I did not want to live in Japan any more. I stayed there for 14 years and that was more than enough. It was fun when I did not have kids, I was working fulltime. But when I had kids I had to start conforming to the pressure of the society--or I was made to feel that I should. I also did not want my kids to attend Japanese schools, a personal choice, I know that many, many non-Japanese people do this and are happy. Not for me. I was tired of being stared at, and tired of being an obvious foreigner who would never fit in.

So, of course once you make the decision to leave, then the next decision is where to? I did not have any more family or friends in the place I grew up. I had no close friends in the US at all. My family was all spread out over the country. It was too hard to find a 3rd country where we could both get visas and work. We did try. My daughter has a chronic condition which meant that whereever we went would have to have excellent medical care.

So in the end, we decided on Hawaii, we had vacationed here a couple of times and we were usually treated like locals. A mixed race couple was no big deal here. There is a vibrant local culture, kind of a foot in both worlds--being in the US but not. I am back but not really since I am not in my hometown (never!) or anywhere near it.

So that is how we ended up here. No regrets at all.
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mdk



Joined: 09 Jun 2007
Posts: 425

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It seems incongrous to speak of being homesick for Fresno, but it actually happens - after you have been gone long enough. I also have ties to my grandkids so that complicates things.

Also, while it probably doesn't mean much to most of the people on this board, you can make up to $13,000 this year before it affects your social security. If you can scrape up the 13K over 3-6 months and then have your social security on top of that to supplement what you are making teaching you can teach overseas a lot longer and in much pleasanter circumstances and still not touch your retirement capital. You work hard here for a quarter, then you are away and gone for six quarters before you have to return.

If nothing else it lets you write off your travel expenses to and from.
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tedkarma



Joined: 17 May 2004
Posts: 1598
Location: The World is my Oyster

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't doubt that I could go back, it's just that I don't want to go back. I love where I am now and you would have to drag me kicking and screaming to get me out of here . . .
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dmb



Joined: 12 Feb 2003
Posts: 8397

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 10:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would you go to a country where English is L1 but not your own country. I am in my wife's home country at the moment(canada) I am having a blast and think I could live here in Toronto. I'm not interested in going back to the UK.

I know living in a place and going on holiday for a month is not the same. Brits, would you consider living in N. America, S. Africa, Oz, NZ, etc and vice versa?
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denise



Joined: 23 Apr 2003
Posts: 3419
Location: finally home-ish

PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2007 12:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dmb wrote:
Would you go to a country where English is L1 but not your own country. I am in my wife's home country at the moment(canada) I am having a blast and think I could live here in Toronto. I'm not interested in going back to the UK.

I know living in a place and going on holiday for a month is not the same. Brits, would you consider living in N. America, S. Africa, Oz, NZ, etc and vice versa?


I would if I could... visa problems. Crying or Very sad I don't think I'd settle there, though--just for another temporary stay of a couple of years, and then back to the US.

If visas and money weren't issues, I think I'd like to go back to Ireland.

d
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Sherri



Joined: 23 Jan 2003
Posts: 749
Location: The Big Island, Hawaii

PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2007 4:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I consider England to be my second home. I would love to live in London again. We seriously considered Australia and New Zealand before coming to Hawaii. It was way too hard to get a visa for Oz and NZ was ruled out because of my daughters health condition (prevented us from getting visas).

S
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
Posts: 11519
Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2007 7:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm currently based part-time in Canada (am from the US) and can't say that I like it at all. But it's Calgary that's my problem. I think Toronto or Montreal or probably many other Canadian cities would be far more interesting.

Calgary's called 'little Houston' and features the greatest number of US citizens living outside the US in any one city. And the city itself reminds me quite a lot of Atlanta, Georgia: kind of brash, edging on arrogant, highly focused on money and consumer stuff, little on offer in terms of serious culture.

Well, nice mountains nearby, that helps.

I read somewhere that for a lot of people from the US, Canada is tough. It shares most of the cultural traits of the States (which many of us left to get AWAY from) and when you live there, you haven't the advantage of actually being in home territory, with family/friends around. Kind of the drawbacks without the benefits...

And the same for Canadians in the US, of course!

Anyway, I'm obviously not trying to say that Canada's not good for US citizens or vice versa, just that my personal experience living in an English-as-an-L1-but-not-my-home-country has not been great, but that may be more due to the city than the country.
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QatarChic



Joined: 06 May 2005
Posts: 445
Location: Qatar

PostPosted: Fri Jul 20, 2007 11:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd consider maybe Australia and South Africa but the process to apply for a visa is far too long...but who knows what may happen in the future? However to be honest I have always seen myself going back to Spain
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Justin Trullinger



Joined: 28 Jan 2005
Posts: 3110
Location: Seoul, South Korea and Myanmar for a bit

PostPosted: Sat Jul 21, 2007 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Can" is probably not the same as "want to." I periodically check the market in the US for various things I could do, if I needed to be there for a while, for family reasons, or whatever. But, all other things being equal, it isn't where I'd choose to live.

In response to your question, dmb,

Quote:
Would you go to a country where English is L1 but not your own country


My partner and I occasionally talk about England, or at least the UK. (She's from there, I'm a yank.) I like it there a lot (lived there for a couple of years in the 90s) though she seems not to. But if we were to consider starting a family, or if we started one accidentally, public education and the NHS are powerful arguments in favour.

Best,
Justin
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sallycat



Joined: 11 Mar 2006
Posts: 303
Location: behind you. BOO!

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 3:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

well, you can go back, but it isn't really "back". after a certain amount of time, moving to a place you used to live is pretty much the same as moving to a brand-new place -- one you may or may not like.
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GambateBingBangBOOM



Joined: 04 Nov 2003
Posts: 2021
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 3:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

spiral78 wrote:
I'm currently based part-time in Canada (am from the US) and can't say that I like it at all. But it's Calgary that's my problem. I think Toronto or Montreal or probably many other Canadian cities would be far more interesting.

Calgary's called 'little Houston' and features the greatest number of US citizens living outside the US in any one city. And the city itself reminds me quite a lot of Atlanta, Georgia: kind of brash, edging on arrogant, highly focused on money and consumer stuff, little on offer in terms of serious culture.


Alberta itself is called Texas North (mostly in a derogatory sort of a way) and that makes Calgary Houston North or Little Houston. Alberta is the home of the Reform party, which then went through name changes until it merged with the Conservative party. They did, and especially with some people in Toronto continue, to have a nuance of ultra right-wing-ism that is associated with the American South and race relations that people automatically seem to think of when they think of that area.


Quote:


I read somewhere that for a lot of people from the US, Canada is tough. It shares most of the cultural traits of the States (which many of us left to get AWAY from) and when you live there, you haven't the advantage of actually being in home territory, with family/friends around. Kind of the drawbacks without the benefits...


It's pretty much the same if you are from one area of Canada and go to another. Canadians tend to not move around all that much (other than when they are forced to by things like economics). With the possible exception of people from the Toronto area heading out tot he Vancouver area.
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william wallace



Joined: 14 May 2003
Posts: 2869
Location: in between

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 3:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're forgetting about East Coast Canadians(unless,you're from Upper Canada Wink ), they've been heading to Toronto and West for a few generations.
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GambateBingBangBOOM



Joined: 04 Nov 2003
Posts: 2021
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Fri Jul 27, 2007 4:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

East Coastians heading east is what I meant by forced to by things like economics.
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BOBBYSUE



Joined: 15 Mar 2007
Posts: 100

PostPosted: Mon Jul 30, 2007 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My sister was in ESL for 16 years, eventually becoming director of studies and then director of a language school. She eventually decided she missed family and friends back in the US. She got on to a good MBA course by explaining her experience at the language school in business terms. After the MBA she got a 120,000 USD job; nothing to do with ESL. She's happy doing something new now and she knows she can always go back to ESL if she wants to.

She was 37 when she decided to change from ESL and she thought it could never be done, but she did it. Now I'm thinking of doing the same.
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