Thursday, May 8, 2014

But do I want to be one of the crazies?

But now I’m waffling. Is this really what I want?

Life in Georgia is hard. I mean, I have a great host family, and I have it good in my village compared to almost all the other volunteers. But that is a very relative “good.”

I am still surrounded by a constant gloom. A constant feeling of hopelessness. Because I know that even though I can help these kids speak better English than if I wasn’t here, it will still be remedial at best when I leave. With this education system, they have to take the initiative to study on their own if they want to succeed, no matter if I can give them a boost or not. And indeed, the students who can have even half of a conversation in English are the students who make an effort on their own time.

And if I go back, I can easily get a job as a sub in Arkansas. Still teaching. Still being a role model. Still encourage dreams. But with the exponential increase in effectiveness that speaking the same freaking language can provide. And with freedom over my own schedule, closeness to my family and friends, and with more opportunities to volunteer for archaeologists around.  

And I’ll also be able to make some money. Here we get a stipend, but saving is next to impossible. In the states I can live with my parents for cheap and save up for whatever adventure is next. AND because I’ll have some money, I’ll be able to have more choice about what that adventure is.

AND because I’ll have both more freedom over my own schedule and more money, I’ll still be able to travel and do cool things, if only in and around Arkansas. But it still might be more than I can do with my current situation.

I haven’t actually signed the new contract yet, so I can still change my mind…..

Anybody wanna give their two cents?


  1. Kitty,
    I think you need to adventure more! Will you be more disappointed that didn't stay or that you did?! I think its the latter. Love you girl and talk to you soon!!

  2. If you have an idea you might want to re-up in Georgia, then consider what you might be able to negotiate, such as being placed in another part of the country that you have an interest in. ... if you decide to stay, you can also adjust your expectations of why you are there and what you can achieve. TLG is only partly about teaching English. Other components are: redistribution of income among Georgians by the government via the TLG volunteers (because you spend almost all of your income locally); getting the word out about Georgia to the world via the TLG volunteers; increase in tourism to Georgia via TLG volunteers and their friends/families; and exposing Georgians to the wider world. .... At the end of the day, though, if you're not happy there - time to move on! The world, including Arkansas, is a big place, and Georgia is only one port of call on your unsettled journey.

    Love your home-page blog photo!

    1. I ended up deciding that although part of me wants to stay, I should listen to the other part, which wants to cross off more things on my adventure list while I can...or as you said, go to the next port of call! Thanks for the great advice!