Maybe baby

It’s possible that my school will re-open April 20th, according to the Head Teacher.

However, we’ve heard this before, so there won’t be any breath-holding happening.

Meantime, I now have a third job, apart from teaching online and the above , er, Clayton’s job.

That is transcribing audio files. I’m about to start today, after passing the entry tests two weeks ago, and finally getting some files assigned.

It’s USD$38 / hour , but that’s per hour of audio, so it may turn out to be an effective hourly rate of … pittance.

It’s a ( backup ) job, Jim…

Bucket List

Ain’t it amazing how fast a change in POV can change everything?

A friend on messenger yesterday jolted me out of whingeing jag quick-smart, with this

Think big picture man…you are living a bucket list right now

And he’s right. It’s stinking warm, I have plenty to eat, I’m not in lockdown, and I have my own apartment and bike. I can almost earn enough online for rent + food. And I get to explore an exotic culture a world away from cold old NZ.

This in reply to me fretting about passing up a chance to save $100 NZD / month on rent. The cheaper place ( “covid-19 discount” said the manager ) had its downsides.

It’s three rooms only – 1) bedroom/living room/kitchen 2) bathroom 3) balcony. But lack of cooking gear & furniture, a construction site on the doorstep, and inertia ( AKA laziness ) meant I stayed put. For another month at the Vinh Quang, where I have been all year.

There comes a point where living cheaply has to take a back seat to living comfortably. And there’s not much to be gained by being miserable while I’m here. I can do that soon enough at home.

On that note, I’m getting slightly more adventurous when it comes to food. This time of year the heat is getting harder to manage. Thus, below is one remedy I tried today. It works well enough.

Juicy coconut, hydration weapon – ~=1 NZD

Money, money, money

Three down, none to go, as far as the refunds from the cancelled trip back home.

I’ve just gotten off the phone with a friendly American, who talked Nervous Neil here through the process of applying for the refund for the DADKULSYD leg.

It may take a coupla / few weeks, but it seems that I’m likely to get a full refund credited to the account I paid from. This young player learned afterward that using an agent ( kiwi.com ) rather than the airline itself was a risky move. The jury’s out, but it seems the agent has come through.

Air New Zealand, for the final leg of the trip, SYD -> WHG, was the easiest to deal with, as you might expect. From them I have a credit to use within the next year.

Vietjet, the standard budget Vietnamese airline, was the most difficult. Note to self – Learn some more damn Vietnamese before this whole caper is over.

So it’s all far from signed, sealed, and delivered. But it’s a weight off nervous shoulders to at least have done the legwork to have ‘in my back pocket’ the eventual trip back.