Here’s the thing. Although I’d prefer to never work again, I knew this idea wasn’t exactly feasible. I ventured down to Bogotá with some cash put away, but I knew eventually, reality would set in. I brought with me a few copies of my resume as well as a willingness to kick ass and take names. Thus, my job search began.
While in the states, I began to research what jobs I could actually get in Colombia. Considering my Spanish sucks, not many options were available. Actually, the only option that seemed viable was to teach English. The thing is, I have no teaching experience what so ever. But, more importantly, I don’t even understand this thing called the English language (as if you couldn’t already tell). Hmmm… this could be a problem.
After doing a little bit of reading, I found out I could easily get a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certification. I found a great program online called i-to-i that would provide me with the basics. Considering I knew that teaching would not be a career, more or a less a time filler, I opted for the easiest course possible. It took approximately 40 hours, and honestly, I’m shocked I even passed. I went through various modules, completed quizzes, and then submitted various written assignments. Within a few hours, I would receive feedback. It usually consisted of them informing me that once again, my lesson plan was considered inappropriate. No joke… I seriously got that response once.
Once everything was completed, I received a nice little certificate that I’m sure I’ll frame in the future and hang on my mother’s wall. You know… just to provide another eyesore in her house. That certificate is quite powerful. It has entrusted me to teach all the young and aspiring minds of the world. I feel like a total bad ass.
A few days before I left, I saw a couple postings that were seeking English Teachers. I went ahead and sent off my resume, expecting to never hear from them. Surprisingly, after a week, I received a response. I hadn’t even really started a serious job search, and I already received my first interview at a prestigious English school.
In Latin America, interviewers put a large emphasis on appearance. Since I look exactly like Brad Pitt, I knew I had the “looks” covered. To be sure, I woke up early that morning and bought a nice dress shirt to wear. I threw on some nice pants and a jacket, and wa-la… I looked like a freaking English teacher.
The interview was in the northern part of Bogotá, and in order to make sure I wasn’t late, I left three hours early. I knew it should only take me about thirty minutes to get there, but, I reminded myself that I’m in Colombia and nothing is certain. I arrived about an hour early, which was enough time to grab and drink and relax. I finally walked up to the office for my first foreign interview.
I quickly filled out a questionnaire, and after a few minutes, the owner came in to speak with me. Our conversation lasted less than five minutes, and it mostly consisted of me complimenting the suit he was wearing. He took a quick glance at my resume and questionnaire, and then looked at me directly and said, “You know what, I like you. You’re hired!”
Like I said, interviews are based solely on appearance, and thanks to my wonderful Brad Pitt look alike genes, I found myself employed.