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To Travel Hopelessly: Five Years of Teaching English as a Foreign Language (The Burnout Trilogy Book 1) by [English Teacher X]
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To Travel Hopelessly: Five Years of Teaching English as a Foreign Language (The Burnout Trilogy Book 1) Kindle Edition


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Length: 184 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Product Description

Product Description

In 1995, after a year of aimless wandering, a broke, parasite-infested backpacker answered an ad in a newspaper in Bangkok and inadvertently became English Teacher X, working, in the next five years, in seven different cities in five different countries.

From the neon-and-vomit-laden streets of Seoul to historic beer-soaked Prague, from a tropical island paradise in Thailand to an industrial hellhole of Post-Soviet Russia, English Teacher X describes, in raw and violent imagery, the life of an English teacher overseas, encountering dishonest and exploitative employers, degenerate colleagues, corrupt police, gold-hearted prostitutes and cold-hearted "English groupies", with drugs and alcohol for all, while questing in vain for the Authentic Cultural Experience.

English Teacher X's world serves as a cautionary tale for young people going overseas to teach, or a titillating taste of the many perks of the darker side of English teaching.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1799 KB
  • Print Length: 184 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0051W1BRS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #10,909 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Amazon.com: HASH(0xa0fe781c) out of 5 stars 50 reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa106dd80) out of 5 stars Funny, could have a little more depth. Aug. 14 2012
By Capivara - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book is funny and captures most of the problems teachers find abroad -- particularly in more openly corrupt countries --, but it's a pity that it only represents part of the group: socially awkward, problematic people with little or no experience in teaching, generally irresponsible and financially unstable, who have nothing to lose and who spend a great sum in drugs, alcohol and prostitutes. I'm a teacher too (though not of English), and most of the language teachers I've come across in Asia over the past years were normal, down-to-earth people. "Most of them", because you can surely find some nutcases in this field, like in any other.

Maybe the book is very good at representing the generation who was in their late twenties during the 90s...? Surely, the author's intention was NOT to depict the current situation in TEFL, but I keep imagining some people might give up their plans of going abroad to teach, thinking that everything is still like this today.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa0eebeac) out of 5 stars A Great Taste of the TEFL underworld July 25 2012
By Dave in Seattle - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
As someone with a similar work history as the infamous English Teacher X I can highly recommend his travel memoir. I've taught in similar Soviet hell holes as well as Korea and Eastern Europe and I can attest that X's travelogue is brutally honest, accurate and truly funny. He's the Henry Miller of English teachers. If you liked Miller's "Tropic of Cancer" this is the book for you-depraved and deranged ex-pats searching for something or simply just trying to escape and with the brevity that Miller lacks. His take on the perverts, nut-jobs, alcoholics and drug fiends that inhabit the teaching world is honest and endearing. A neglected yet vital topic he covers are the nutty and desperate student groupies who make TEFL teaching either incredibly enjoyable or nerve racking-depending on how nutty/beautiful the student is. The chapter, "About a Whore" is about his brief time with a prostitute named "Oh" and it is about the most touching thing I've read in a long time. If Julia Roberts had half the charm of "Oh" she'd be worth watching. Despite or because of his debauchery you'll be rooting for X as he wanders from one TEFL hell hole to the next.

A must read for anyone thinking teaching English overseas!
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa10bdb70) out of 5 stars Great read June 27 2011
By Carmo - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bought this book without any expectations but was hoping for a fun, quick read that was about travel, sex, and debauchery(3 of my favorite things). I was not disappointed, read the whole thing straight through. Highly recommended.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa0f79c84) out of 5 stars Interesting life of an english teacher we hope we will never be Feb. 10 2014
By M. S. NORTHCOTT - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved this book. Teacher X seemed to leave a very interesting life partly due to him going places most sane teachers would avoid like the plague but that he seemed to relish partly for the adventure and partly for the cash.
Not recommended for those who wish to follow in his footsteps but for those naive enough to think that a career in English teaching is all happy students and adoration.
Not Graham Greene but a good read.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa10bdbe8) out of 5 stars Worth it. Feb. 28 2016
By Curt M Revis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I found this book while browsing for some ESL teaching advice, and once I'd read it (which took just a few hours), I immediately recommended it to a friend suffering through a teaching position in Thailand.

"To Travel Hopelessly" is a humorous and accurate depiction of what many, if not most, young English speakers go through when they choose to move overseas and become an English "teacher." English Teacher X shares both the details and the feelings associated with this experience in a way that is both engaging and rewarding. For those who are considering entering the field, the read will raise several cautions. For those already in the field, the read will provide a cathartic "Oh, yeah, it's not just me" feeling.

The book is easy to read and draws you in with an off-hand tone of voice that proves remarkably compassionate despite the many difficulties and disappointments the writer encountered. This is definitely worth the read, and might hook you into reading the other books by English Teacher X that, yes, you might have to pay for.