VIPKid (And Almost Everything Else) Vacancy

I am not even sure where to start, dear readers. I suppose it’s best to start at the beginning, with the title, which like many things, has a double meaning. The week started off well enough. I finished up with my pre-intermediate class giving my last student her four hours that were owed. I had my second lesson with my student from Poland and she seems to be enjoying the things we are working on. Also, I was excited to see that Katya’s mom might want to start pronunciation lessons with me. Though I’m not sure as she hasn’t gotten back to me as yet about scheduling. But I was really excited to be able to help. I have missed Katya’s exuberance. I think I may have made a bit of a mistake as I mentioned to her mom that I was starting to think that online English platforms were not all that effective as a lot of my level fours and level fives can barely read. I hope she didn’t take that amiss and decides not to have classes with me.

But everything started to go a little pear-shaped late Monday night. You see, dear readers, I forgot to open for the frenzy. Actually, it wasn’t that I forgot. I was waiting to hear about a potential teaching gig that involves a Boot Camp with Dutch kids who want to play games but speak English while doing it. I knew about this potential job about three weeks back. I also knew that there was no guarantee that the work would come through. But I thought that I would be able to not open for the frenzy on Sunday into Monday, and instead open on Monday evening when I knew something and still be fully booked. Nope. Not the case. Never have I seen a sea of blue with so many open slots. I even took the precaution of letting my parents that I have on WeChat know and still nothing. Nothing is a bit of a misnomer. It’s not a complete sea of blue, Out of 34 hours opened, 13 have booked. But still it almost feels like next week is a bit of a vacation for me unless something books short notice. I have learned a lesson here. I cannot afford to keep my slots open after frenzy. They will not book. It’s the age old problem of too many teachers, not enough students and the early bird getting the worm. Which I wasn’t. So we had lots have lots of vacancies on my schedule in the literal sense. As I watched my next week bookings not really increase or stay stable, I started to panic. The panic edged into my weekend and there things really got dicey.

On Saturdays, I have a bit of a routine. I attend a couple of different meetings via Zoom from about 9:30 in the morning until about 11:40 in the morning. This past Saturday, I had accidentally opened up my 11 AM slots to classes and they booked last week. In the middle of this week they opened back up and I closed them so that I could attend my second morning meeting which is optional. But it’s actually a coffee via Zoom with people that I like. So I was pleased to get a bit of social interaction that wasn’t Jasper. Not a problem, I thought. I was going swimmingly on Saturday morning with both meetings attended and enjoyed. And then the shit really hit the fan. I had asked Jasper to look at some technical things that was happening with my computer. And. Forgot. To. Wear. My. Fitbit. Thus, we were blithely going over my tech issues, and I thought that I had until 1 PM which was my first class. It. Wasn’t. I forgot that I had opened up classes at 12, and the first slot from 12 to 1230 booked. At 12:17 I looked at the clock and realized that I was 17 minutes late into my first class. By that time, it was too late and I had already been given a teacher no-show as well as docked by $10. I did send a card to the student and asked about getting a soft or medium cancellation as I was having personal issues. Or at least that’s the reason that I gave VIPKid. I hold very little hope, however that I will get a soft or medium cancellation. It threw the rest of Saturday into a tailspin. I spent the rest of the day discombobulated and unable to concentrate. I got to my other three classes but I do feel that I wasn’t at my best. So we have a schedule vacancy and now a brain one. I was quite happy when Sunday rolled around and I was able get back in the swing of things mostly. I hope that my student, whose name is Ocean, can forgive me. I can content myself that at least they can’t give me a bad review for a course they haven’t taken. But I am heartily tired of blue schedules. I hope this VIPKid vacancy doesn’t last much longer. The vacancy does extend a little bit to the English Center, where I have now finished up with pre-intermediate and have a little bit of a break between I teach the next cycle starting May 7. That vacancy, unlike the brain fart with VIPKid, and the sea of blue that is my current schedule is, thankfully, temporary.

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

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