I started the MA TESOL program at Payap University in the fall of 2015. My first semester is competed and I am gearing up to begin the second semester of classes.
Going from teaching and hanging out with Thai people all day to being a full time student in an international program where I speak English all day was a hard transition for me. The amount of homework was more than I expected and my normal, social personality was traded in for a focused, much more introverted version of myself. But, I handled the transition and finished the first semester with a 4.0. (Yes, I’m bragging.)
The semester wasn’t without its bumps and chaos and the school work sucked out most of my time and energy (thus the lack of blogs…) but now, after a full month off, I am refreshed and excited to start the second semester.
God, being the Good Daddy that he is–knew that in order for me survive the intensity of the semester, I would need to be surrounded by a memorable cast of characters to go through it with. I mean, it wouldn’t be my life if it didn’t somehow resemble a sitcom…
There are 13 people in my program, representing eight countries, and in honor of the new semester, I want to introduce you to a few of my favorite characters (using the nicknames I gave them the first week of class before I knew their real names…).
1. Holy Spirit Woman
Holy Spirit Woman is the classmate that I respect the most. She is from Burma, married an American, has two young children, is the head of a ministry that works with Burmese refugees, this is her second Masters Degree AND she somehow is able to balance all the demands of her life as well as get (most) of her assignments turned in on time.
She’s amazing and inspiring.
2. GQ Man
As his nickname suggests, this young man is quite the looker. As a young, single woman, the first week of class, I took an inventory of my male classmates. GQ Man cannot go unnoticed. Unfortunately (or fortunately?), my personality is not attracted to the overly beautiful and so GQ Man’s perfectly quaffed hair did not distract me long. Though I can not deny that he is very “easy on the eyes”. 🙂
3. Magic Man
Ha! Where do I even begin.
Magic Man is from Iran and has some of the biggest arm muscles I have ever seen in my life. These massive muscles of his are well complimented with his incredibly insecure man personality… mix these two features together and you get quite the combination.
Magic Man is on the prowl. He’s looking for love. He’s very interested in Thai women, however, can not speak Thai. Over the course of the semester I was commissioned to interview potential dates, set up rendezvous times and was even asked to accompany him on a date as a translator (which I had to turn down–much to my disappointment).
Oh! AND Magic Man is a magician whose card tricks blew me away class after class.
4. Laser Eyes
Unfortunately, this classmate got his nickname due to the fact that every time he opened his mouth, the entire class glared at him with laser eyes of death. So… you can pray for me with this one.
5. Ellen Degeneres
Ellen is effortlessly cool. She and her husband moved to Thailand and have built for themselves a personal retreat center at which she throws extravagant parties and invites any and everyone she knows.
At one such party, I noticed she had a wall full of ceramic Dutch row houses–as neither her, nor her husband originate form Holland, I was confused and asked for the story behind them. She responded with, “They are the free gift we receive whenever we fly KLM Business Class.” There were over 50 houses…
6. The Brit and 7. The Romanian
This dating duo are the only other Westerns in the program. The Brit never (ever) shows up to class and the Romanian never sleeps before coming to class. These two are the “cool cats” of the program with their outspoken personalities and aloof attitudes.
There are a couple other people in the program, but these are the ones that I come home with stories about most often.
As the second semester is quickly approaching, my goal is to better balance my school work with other aspects of my life–which includes this blog. Sooooooo, hopefully I will do a better job bringing you all into the sitcom that I call my Masters Program.