Cancelation Confirmed, New Negotiation, and a Standby Struggle

It’s always difficult, dear reader, to come to terms with the end of a lesson cycle. Karolina did not get back to me with any news regarding her work so I have to assume that she has decided to cancel my lessons for the foreseeable future, if not forever. That makes me very sad as we have been working together for almost two years. It isn’t simply that we had a business relationship, I like to think that we were becoming friends as well. I was charging her half of what I charge in the Netherlands and that tells me something about Polish salaries namely, that they are very low. I have had all kinds of feelings over the last few days as you might imagine. I am surprised at the loss of a student but I’m equally sad that for Karolina it was a foregone conclusion that our lessons will stop, as that meant that she knew her salary was going to be low. Ever the optimist, I choose to believe that Karolina will come back on my schedule once she has her job situation sorted. I have not heard whether she would like to talk to each other once a week as I do with Delphine in France.

All was not lost, however, as my friend Erica gave me a lead from Facebook. The woman, who works for a consulting firm, wanted thirty hours of lessons for a friend of hers and was willing to pay €300 for 30 hours. The lessons were to take place three hours a day over the next two weeks. And they were to be in person. Of course, I said no as I think that that is ridiculous and I might as well sit online and wait for people to call me on Cambly with no prep for that kind of money. She came back to me on Thursday evening asking whether I’d be willing to work for €40 for a 90-minute class. Again I said no and then she came back to me asking if I would work for €40 an hour for a 10-hour package. I said yes to that and the student was to come to me. She asked me if I would be willing to have a Zoom with the student to talk to them before we started lessons, and I said yes. I was also able to get her to agree to pay me each week in advance. I had a Zoom meeting with the student on Friday to find out her goals and expectations. I was pleased that it’s to be IELTS help as I have lots of resources and materials.

Over at the English Center, I and finishing up packages with several students. I am retaining Harumi who would like to continue lessons but thankfully it will be once a week for an hour and a half on Friday mornings. I am losing my one pronunciation student and I’m uncertain about the other one. I hope that I get to keep her as she and I have a great rapport, partially because of both being Greek. On Thursday last week, the English Center was looking for a potential substitute for a teacher who may have been exposed to Covid from someone in her daughter’s class. Had it happened, it would have been a 6 hour class for me. While the idea of that much work was appealing, I was happy, of course, that she wasCovid negative on Sunday morning. I was then able to spend a very quiet weekend writing and reading as I had planned my lessons through the Wednesday of this week. That result also gave me the opportunity to move a Saturday class with my new, though temporary, student to Monday, My takeaway from my experience with that I’m not sure that I would want to substitute very often unless I had all of the information about the student and did not have to do any prep myself.

With the resurgence of the Sunday morning writing, I’m able to get quite a bit of stuff done. The writing proceeds will and I am quite pleased with the result. I only wish that Thursday nights were as productive. This comes in direct conflict with the fact that I miss my in-person writers’ group quite a lot. I even miss hosting. I am still conflicted about those in the groups who have not been vaccinated. I am not sure that there are that many of them. But it is still a concern and I am conscious of Jasper’s ask that we don’t have unvaccinated people in the house. Another dilemma is when to cancel the meetup subscription. The conflict comes because we have a thousand members and I’m not sure I want to lose contact with that kind of base. But, it’s a dilemma for Thursday.

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

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