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To Travel Hopelessly: Five Years of Teaching English as a Foreign Language (English Teacher X Book 2) [Kindle Edition]

English Teacher X
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $8.99
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Book 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

  • File Size: 1591 KB
  • Print Length: 177 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1468076329
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0051W1BRS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #289,575 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Taste of the TEFL underworld July 25, 2012
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!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read June 27, 2011
By Carmo
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.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Funny, could have a little more depth. August 14, 2012
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.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very entertaining writer April 3, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
I would urge anyone considering teaching English as a second language in "underdeveloped" (that means "poorer than let's say Italy") countries, to read these books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Travel Memoir Ever October 14, 2012
By Mallory
Format:Kindle Edition
X has a candid and raunchy writing style which I find hilarious, and somehow really relatable. His cynical and realistic perspective on his past is really refreshing. He doesn't try to create any illusions about his life experience. If you want some souped up, romanticized travel stories, look elsewhere. There is a spiritual journey here, but it is subtle and nothing like Lonely Planet. Prepare yourself for some pretty grotesque stories, but they are really funny and I have it on good authority that Vodkaberg is even grosser. Can't wait to read it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Living on Thailand/Korean/Russian time. July 25, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Teacher X begins his journey as a recent college graduate, just out of a couple of bad relationships looking for adventure. He ends up in Thailand and gets a job teaching English. The real adventure begins from there and takes our writer thru his 20's, a new millenium and several co-workers, hookers, girlfriends, bosses, and countries. This book is an honest bit of writing that I truly enjoyed. I came away from the book feeling not only envy for Teacher X to have the guts to do the things he's done but, also with a pity for him for seemingly want to be anywhere but home.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Best Free Kindle Book I've Read June 29, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Very fun read, far better than anything else I've gotten for free off of amazon. I'll be looking for his next one coming this summer and will even throw down $2.99 for it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Outstanding April 15, 2012
By R. Kern
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
As this is a career I have been contemplating, I decided that reading something that speaks of worst case scenarios might be useful. I was completely enthralled and immersed in it and have found myself reading the entire thing in one sitting. The review of the authors journeys made it seem as if you had actually lived the experience. Very highly recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting life of an english teacher we hope we will never be
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... Read more
Published 10 months ago by M. S. NORTHCOTT
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
Another excellent work by Teacher X. Just loved it. Explores the life of an English teacher in several countries. Very realistic with no hype, tell everything type of book. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Maher
4.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious if unfulfilling
This is a brief but hilarious collection of travel stories, detailing how English Teacher X actually became English Teacher X; he had been backpacking around the world and didn't... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Matt W.
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended for ESL teachers
As an ESL teacher myself, I appreciate how "English Teacher X" chronicled his teaching life story, experiences, and shenanigans. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Kent Martin
3.0 out of 5 stars An interesting read
3 because it was entertaining and at times interesting. Not 4 or 5 because it was a bit rude for my taste at times.
Published 20 months ago by E
4.0 out of 5 stars the title alone is enough
More stories and variety than some of his other works, but still irreverent and full of joyfully bad behavior. English Teacher X before Russia destroyed him.
Published 20 months ago by hm
4.0 out of 5 stars Shocking Asia Would have been a great title.
The stories almost sound unbelievable, sure there is perhaps some embelishment but putting this aside, there is probably some truth behind some of the stories which makes then... Read more
Published 20 months ago by Paul Gale
4.0 out of 5 stars It was okay.
As an English teacher from America teaching abroad, the title caught me. I have to say I have never had similar experiences but I am also teaching almost 20 years later. Read more
Published 23 months ago by Rebecca Miller
5.0 out of 5 stars English Teacher X books take you there
I definitely enjoyed reading all of English Teacher X's books about his adventures teaching Englsh abroad. Read more
Published on November 13, 2012 by uglazniga
1.0 out of 5 stars A hopeless read
For a stark look at the fiasco that teaching English as a second language is, I found this to be an uninspired narrative by an author self-absorbed with self-interests, which is... Read more
Published on October 21, 2012 by David B. Goehner
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More About the Author

English Teacher X is a 15-year veteran of some of the worst English language schools in the world.

He has lived and worked in eight different cities in seven different countries, including Thailand and Russia.

He no longer believes that travelling hopefully is better than arriving.


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