19 April 2020

Wow – it has been a busy few weeks. It’s like I blinked and suddenly we’re approaching the end of April.

In the meantime, major things have happened in my life.

Thing one: I started an English private tutoring page.

I’ve been teaching English online for the past 5 years but the idea to start up a proper page only came to me a few weeks ago on one of my back-and-forth walks in the residential complex (more on that in my previous post).

And since creating my page on 3rd April (as Facebook tells me), I’ve been toying with a lot of different ideas (most of which occurred during my walks) and created some content for the page, and earlier this week I decided to bite the bullet and start sharing the page. Not to everyone I know (that would be unwise), but to a few people. #PhasedApproach

And, completely against my expectations, I immediately got inquiries. Both of them through the one friend who shared my page on their Facebook and emphatically guaranteed the “premium-ness” of my service. Really shows the power of word of mouth and connections.

Fingers crossed, these two leads turn into paying customers. Things seem to be heading in that direction. I had my 30-min diagnostic session with both (separately, of course) yesterday, and my read on the situation is that they were happy with me/my “Bespoke” approach (the service is called “Val’s Bespoke English Lessons” and is a product of the during-walk realisation that the service I already offer is 100% tailored to my student – so why not sell it as such?).

Thing two: I decided to quit my job.

For those who’ve read my previous few posts, this will not come as a complete surprise. (Oh how vain is she who thinks people follow and read all her posts…)

It’s a wonderful job and I love working with the team. But (as I mentioned here), all this pandemic has led me to re-evaluate what really matters in my life. And hands down a life with my partner is more precious to me than any job, so… I’m moving to Hanoi!

As soon as I complete my duties toward the Thai government (I’m a government scholar – they paid for my studies abroad and in return I’m legally binded to stay in Thailand for the equal number of years I spent abroad), I will be heading to Hanoi.

Funnily enough, my “Independence Day” is on 4th July. After this auspicious date, I will be freeeeeeeeeeee. So we’re looking at moving in together some time in July, once I’ve sorted out the move from my end. (And given, of course, that borders have opened by then.)

I’m pretty excited about this. I planned 3 years ago to move to Hanoi. The plan never came to fruition as my life took unexpected turns. To follow these twists and turns and if you have up to an hour to spare, go here. Start with the first post then work your way up! (Yes, I write a lot of blogs.)

So, in order to move to Hanoi, I will be quitting my job at Agoda. My manager has been aware of this possible eventuality since February, but finally 2 days ago (Friday 17th April) I made my decision. I informed my manager on Friday and will be announcing the news to the team early this coming week, then click “Resign”. A monumental decision, executed with only one click. (More likely it will be multiple clicks – but “the first click is the greatest” [Know the song?]).

Goodbye (for now) corporate life. Hello (again) freelancing life!

I hope those 2 leads from my page convert. It would be a great start. But if not, that’s okay too. I’ll just keep trying!

Keep your fingers crossed for me.



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