I just finished teaching english for the foreseeable future. Honestly it hasn’t really set in yet. I went through the whole day on autopilot. I was still angry waking up at 6am even though that may be the earliest I wake up for a while. I downed my third cup of coffee on the way to work and dashed in with seconds to spare. Fortunately my classes were all well behaved today, but I didn’t really savor the moment. I keep telling myself that its the end, and talking about it with people, and the reality still hasn’t set in. I’ll probably jolt myself awake at 6am in the Netherlands thinking of lesson plans when I finally realize I’m not teaching english anymore.
Since I had so many schools that I visited on a semi-regular basis, saying goodbye was a two week process. Its been pretty sad, but my schools have also been good to me. I have been showered with cards, letters, and little gifts from my students. Its much more than I could have ever expected, especially since my schools pretty much have a new ALT every year and are used to the change by now.
Its crazy to think back to where I started 1 1/2 years ago. I still remember my first day and giving a speech in front of my entire school. I was so nervous I’m surprised it didn’t pee my pants. The first couple days of school were terrifying, trying to figure out how everything worked and how to teach a class. Eight-teen months later many of my classes were taught on autopilot. I can’t say that this is the end of teaching, (who knows where the next year will bring me) but its the end of teaching for now. I’m gonna miss my students and seeing their smiling faces every morning. (I’m not gonna miss the kanchos.)