How Growing up Overseas Has Opened My Eyes

Posted by weareelic on Aug 13, 2020 1:00:00 AM

Anndrea Scroggins

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Topics: Culture, development, travel, life, foreigner, overseas, TCK, childhood, Third Culture Kid

Enjoying the Spectacle

Posted by weareelic on Jul 20, 2020 1:00:00 AM


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Topics: People, Culture, travel, foreigner

Well, I can't be gone that day...

Posted by weareelic on Jul 8, 2020 3:08:34 PM
He pulled open the calendar on his phone, swiping to the days when he would be gone. It would only be four weeks, but… Well, I can’t be gone that day, he dropped his phone on his bed. It was time to cancel the trip. His mother would want him home on the 30th, and it was smack-dab in the middle of his trip overseas.
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Topics: development, travel, plans, life, Teacher

Act justly. Love mercy. Walk humbly.

Posted by Jonathan Smyth on Jun 30, 2020 12:00:04 PM

[Note: The following statement from ELIC President, Tim Davis, was originally posted to the ELIC website on June 4, 2020.]

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The Culture Series: People and Culture of Vietnam

Posted by weareelic on Jun 22, 2020 6:00:00 AM


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Topics: People, English, History, Culture, Vietnam

The Culture Series: People and Culture of Mongolia

Posted by weareelic on Jun 15, 2020 12:12:06 PM


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Topics: People, English, History, Mongolia, Culture

5 Lessons From Laos

Posted by weareelic on May 18, 2020 2:00:00 AM
  1. Grilled bananas are yummy!  As is true in many Asian countries, roadside food vendors are plentiful in Laos.  One of our favorite stalls was one that sold roasted sweet potatoes, corn, and bananas.  A small, short variety of banana is peeled and roasted over coals until the outside is brown and chewy and the inside is warm and soft. 
  2. “The Vietnamese plant the rice, the Cambodians tend it, and the Lao listen to it grow.”  This observation, which is attributed to the French who colonized the area known as French Indochina, pretty well sums up the attitude and lifestyle of the Lao people.   One young woman in an English class that we had the opportunity to teach unashamedly revealed that she had been studying English in this language center for six years, but had only advanced to the second level!  This laid back approach to life pervades all of Lao culture.
  3. The world is huge!  After more than 20 years of living and traveling overseas, it’s easy to start feeling fairly smug about one’s understanding of the “outside” world and its various cultures.  Then you go to Laos!  We were once again stunned by the beauty in both nature and culture. 
  4. Ice is civilization.  The Lao people have an intense love affair with ice!  That’s not too surprising in a climate where the yearly average high temperature is 88F/31C and it seldom dips below 60F/16C.  Ice delivery trucks are a common sight, and iced drinks, especially coffee and tea, are the norm.  Chests filled with ice are a fixture in most restaurants, and Lao patrons will even pour their locally produced Beerlao beer over ice! 
  5. A smile goes much farther than a snarl.  Upon our arrival in Laos we were given an orientation to the country and its culture.  One thing we were told is that Lao people don’t like discord and conflict—who does?  So the best way to get a lower price when bargaining is to laugh and smile and keep a light atmosphere.  We may not have gotten the greatest deals, but we sure did learn to laugh and smile while we were getting taken!
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In the Wardrobe

Posted by weareelic on May 10, 2020 1:14:00 PM

Do you feel like you’ve lived a whole two years in the past month? While this season has come with its challenges, I’ve also experienced interesting moments that probably would never have happened outside of these circumstances. Here is one of my favorites:

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Border Run

Posted by weareelic on Apr 22, 2020 12:00:13 PM

A couple of weeks ago we had to make a run to the border to change and extend our visa. We came into Cambodia on tourist visas, which are only good for 30 days. We needed to leave Cambodia and re-enter in order to change to a business visa that could be renewed with no limits. We went on quite an adventure.

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Waiting for Morning

Posted by weareelic on Mar 24, 2020 1:03:42 PM

I moved to China in August to teach English and build relationships with my students and those in my community there. In late January, I left China to attend my sending organization’s annual conference for professional development and rest in Thailand. Once there, I learned that my return flight to China for the semester had been cancelled, and I was instructed not to rebook.

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Stories, tips, and inspiration from across the world

Our teachers live in some really cool places! Through our blog, we strive to share with you what their lives are like as they live and teach overseas. Follow along on our journey and learn a few tips about living in a foreign country.

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