Wrenching Realization

This week at Inkreadable was fairly quiet. At least, in terms of VIPKid as I had a lot of lessons with TEC. In fact, I only gave VIPKid four hours this week. In the first place, school has started back up in China and so there are less 10 AM bookings to be had. And I think the kids are trying to get back in the swing of the school year and so they’re not going to be booking as readily as they will in about a month. I have made up for my lack of VIPKid time this week, however. My new strategy with managing my schedules after the kerfuffle of last week is to give The English Center and my private students priority in my schedule and then try and schedule VIPKid around them. I am hopeful that it will work better.

Over at The English Center, things have gotten better with a few new clients primarily in Amstelveen, but I also lost a client this week to some group classes. I guess that’s the nature of the job. But what I’m finding out as I go along in this new world tiptoeing around with children and adults, Is it no one is going to look after my interest except me. And as is in the rest of the English language teaching world, the teaching of adults is also very “the customer is king” based. Particularly at the expense of the teacher. I had a student cancel with me on Monday at 11:30 AM and then keep the lesson, and then cancel the lesson on Tuesday at 2 PM when his lesson was at six that day. What I didn’t realize is that while there’s a 48-hour policy to the English Center, there is a 24-hour policy to the teacher. I did not know that as that is not explicitly stated anywhere in my contract (I checked). I thought the 48-hour policy was across the whole company. The English Center decided to honor the original cancellation for the students and so I could not bill the hours. Now that I know that I know how to proceed. I can’t say that I’m not upset about it. I am.  Because I was ready to teach, and feel that the latest of the cancellations should have been honored as that would have been fair to me, but it further demonstrates that sometimes it’s every teacher for themselves and that teachers are considered expendable. And I find that very sad. Hence the title of this post today.

Thankfully I still have my private students, but for now, it’s only Felix.  He is easy as I see him twice a week for an hour, and I can test out different ways to teach concepts before I spring them on anyone else. Janice has not taken a class in a few weeks as she is taking a coding course and will be back when she has finished with it. I find myself missing former students like Katya who I haven’t seen in many many moons. She is one busy little girl. And then there’s my Greek student given to me by Lexis Amsterdam who I haven’t seen in almost a year.

My tech issues continue at the bookstore on Thursday nights, and I have decided to use this as an opportunity to be productive. This week it was 1000 words of text. I’m not sure it was very good text but that’s what editing is for.  I went to Antwerp on Saturday with a friend from the writer’s group. What do you do when you go to Antwerp, you ask? Chocolate, pretty buildings, and shiny rocks, of course. The fourth one on the top row we named “The Fancy Pants Man”, because of his fancy pants his prancing gait, and his attitude. There were so many building from the Beaux-Arts period, below are a sampling. There were also notable examples of the Art Nouveau period jewelry in the DIVA (The diamond museum), but I didn’t know if I could take pictures so I didn’t. Antwerp is definitely worth a second visit if only for more chocolate.

That’s all she wrote for this inkreadable installment. But, stay tuned. As always, there is more to come.

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