Monday, May 19, 2014

Conversation with Sam, Part Three: Teacher Salaries in Peru, Stranger Danger, and the Obesity Epidemic

This is the third and final part of a IM conversation I had with former colleague and would-be Robin to my Batman during the mid 2000s in Vodkaberg. We discuss more about teaching in Peru, how to judge whether a city is dangerous or not, a few bits of unusual local cuisine, and what is politely referred to as the obesity epidemic, and less politely referred to as the Plague of Fatty Boom Boom.


English Teacher X 
are you guys planning to go to Machu Pichu anytime soon?

Sam
5/1, 11:14am
yeah, we actually bought tickets to go a few weeks ago, but there was a strike and all the busses were cancelled. We don't know exactly when we'll get there.

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:15am
I see here a week of amazon survival training costs $1500 or so
met any ecology buffs down there? A lot of them in Costa Rica

Sam
5/1, 11:16am
yes, in fact the owner of our school used to run luxury biology and ecology tours.

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:16am
He sounds like a well-rounded individual
Does it feel safe on the streets there?

Sam
5/1, 11:17am
ha, he has a very strict no sitting in class policy
It's super safe here

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:18am
ha, they bitch at us about that, also
"over sitting"
Of all my bad teaching habits, over sitting is not one of them

Sam
5/1, 11:18am
not only do I want to sit because i'm lazy, it freaks the students out if you pace around like a jaguar

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:18am
You are in (REDACTED), right?

Sam
5/1, 11:18am
yeah

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:18am
Lima also felt safe?

Sam
5/1, 11:20am
absolutely
we were even afraid from internet stories.
it felt like europe in miraflores district

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:20am
you hear about express kidnapping and gang rapes, but mostly in Colombia and Brazil
gang rapes on buses

Sam
5/1, 11:21am
I think maybe Peru must have been super dangerous ten years ago. The locals go into hysterics if you even suggest that any street here is safe.
But Chinese people think China is dangerous and that is the safest country I've ever been to. Locals be crazy.

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:23am
i always judge dangerous feeling by how many sketchy-looking guys there are standing around on street corners
in Russia of course, they sat in the podezd or in the little playgrounds drinking
Memphis and New Orleans, there are tons of drug dealers and other miscreants on the corners

Sam
5/1, 11:27am
that's a terrible way to judge, there are a ton of sketchy dudes on every coner in Vietnam offering drugs and prostitutes, but it's totally safe
A lot of place look dangerous but aren't

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:28am
Every place is safe, until you get robbed
how much is the hostel you stay at?
i hope at least you have a room for yourself and not living in the dorm

Sam
5/1, 11:29am
we pay 250 dollars a month but are moving from the hostel in a couple days

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:29am
I'm living in a trailer park. despite my high salary. My karma has come full circle.

The luxurious digs of a highly paid English teacher in the ME
Sam
5/1, 11:30am
The crazy thing about here is that english teaching is so badly paid that there are actually other things you can to for money. We met a guy who makes truffles at his hostel and sells them on the main street and makes as much or more than we do.
We are planning to rent our extra room out on air b n b

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:30am
Jesus
I'll probably tidy this up and edit it a bit and use it as a blog entry, hope you don't mind
i'll change the name
Are the teachers mostly American?

Sam
5/1, 11:33am
totally american. It's so funny becuase the brits and french dudes have cell phones, but the americans are too stupid to figure out the sim card system. our 'academic coordinator' has been teaching for one month. She and almost all the americans here are too afraid to get sim cards

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:34am
Doesn't the school give them cheap phones so they can call them early in the morning to do substitute classes?

Sam
5/1, 11:34am
nope
email only for nearly ever american teacher except us.
and anyway the teacher line up for substituting to get that extra 4 dollars an hour

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:36am
And they try to speak Spanish all the time, I bet
even to each other

Sam
5/1, 11:36am
We found out the other day, by accident because our 'academic coordinator' accidentally sent u eveyone's salaries, we get more than the other teacher. we get 13.5 soles per hour nearly all the others, except the two old ladies get 11.5 an hour

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:37am
you worked hard to get that extra 50 cents an hour
you deserve it, man
you are easily worth 50 cents more than those guys



Sam
5/1, 11:37am
My academic coordinator and the dude who helps out on the tefl course were spanish majors in college. Which was a like a year ago

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:37am
Sure, remember all the Russian language majors in Vodkaberg?
Chuck was one, wasn't he, and look at him now

Sam
5/1, 11:38am
yeah, happy, engaged to a friendly outgoing vietnamese girl and in a management position at his school in vietnam

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:39am
As well as an English teacher can do

Sam
5/1, 11:39am
yep

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:40am
I was talking to Crazy Bob about life and reminded him that he had seen what the future as a drunken English teacher looked like, we worked with several versions of the Ghost of Christmas Future.

Sam
5/1, 11:41am
at least we don't marry fat american girls who whine at us to turn off our sports and/or sit coms
You should ask Bob about the saudi chick he met at the mall and banged
well our hostel owner is going to turn off the wifi...

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:41am
Yeah he told me about that Saudi chick and said she looked like a member of a 60s girl group like the Ronnettes or something



5/1, 11:42am
English Teacher X 
that's a desert lizard that sucks blood
apparently the students ate it

Sam
5/1, 11:42am
what??

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:42am
that's at a branch out in the desert somewhere
it drinks the liquids out of its prey but doesn't eat anything

Sam
5/1, 11:43am
guinea pig is loved here, not culturally, but because it's crazy fatty. America is behind the obesity curve now. Check out China nd Peru

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:43am
yeah , I read that Mexico is No 1 now
America is going down a bit
we're not number one in anything anymore

Sam
5/1, 11:43am
yeah and Saudi is no 1 I think for diabetes

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:44am
yeah, that might be because of inbreeding though
they like their dates though, lots of sugar in those

Sam
5/1, 11:44am
No, it's because they love cold stone and anything sugary. here too

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:44am
they found the fattest guy in the world in Riyadh recently
he was like 19 and weighted 1500 pounds

Sam
5/1, 11:45am
When I was in Dubai last there was this awesome brochure about dates and they said the mahmool dates or whatever inhibid diabetes. What a joke.

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:45am



600kg Saudi Arabian man airlifted to hospital :: World's Heaviest Man in History
www.youtube.com
600kg Saudi Arabian man airlifted to hospital Saudi Arabia

Sam
5/1, 11:45am
cool

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:45am
They had to cut him out of the apartment and bring him down in a crane

Sam
5/1, 11:46am
watching it now. Crazy
600 kg is insane
he looks korean

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:46am
big smile on his face
happy kid
they say it must have been mostly high-calorie liquids, milkshakes and soda

Sam
5/1, 11:47am
I gain weight whenever I visit dubai

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:47am
Frappucinos

Sam
5/1, 11:47am
And it's awesome

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:47am
Yeah, Dubai gets you some good eats
Lebanese

Sam
5/1, 11:48am
yeah, frappes, as they call them here. But they have like all these sodas in each region here. The only reason Peru and India are not on top of obesity listing is the impoverished people. Mid and upper class people are gigantic.
Like Louisville airport

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:48am
the 21st century, god love 'em

Sam
5/1, 11:48am
fuck I want some hummus
Though there is better food here than China probably. Ceviche.
Indian fellas are chubby and the chicks are so so fat

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:50am
Our students are often a bit chubby, but not too many real huge fatties

Sam
5/1, 11:51am
yeah, they get crazy in the usa, but the middle east is pretty uniformly fat amongst 40 year olds

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:51am
People in America down south where I lived, people look like Jabba the Hutt
Everyone is not just fat, but mis-shapen

Sam
5/1, 11:51am
haha

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:51am
Metabolic syndrome
all out of proportion

Sam
5/1, 11:52am
Yeah, I have never been to the south I guess. I read that if you subtract the southern states, the usa is pretty low on the list of obesity.
wifi going

English Teacher X 
5/1, 11:55am
all right, gotta go have lunch anyway
ciao
hasta luego



10 comments:

steveaustin said...

Saudi chicks are that easy? I thought you could lose your cock in a court of law if you tried sleeping with one?

On a completely different note, I have the chance of a very cheap ticket to Russia for a week vacation and was thinking of Kazan. Have you been there, do you recommend it?

Someone told me the "golden circle" instead, but that appears a bit monotonous with church shit

englishteacherx said...

Yeah, I was in Kazan once and I liked it quite a bit, it had a very nice atmosphere and it's got very historic architecture as well. Seemed to be a party town, the Tartars like to kick up.

I have heard stories about guys banging Saudi girls abroad but nut in Saudi.

steveaustin said...

hhm, bad news i think. your blog may have just led another traveller astray.

after looking at Kazan, Moscow, and the Golden ring towns on the internet, i think i might visit to Samara instead....

Moscow is too big for me, Golden ring looks boring, Kazan interesting but i didn't realise it was ethnic, which although good, isn't what i want to see on my first visit to Russia

also, the train from Moscow to Samara is only 2 hours longer than to Kazan, so half a dozen one way 6 the other eh?

what do you reckon about Samara for a first time visitor to Russia (5 days)?

englishteacherx said...

Well, I would say I don't think it's particularly great for a first time visitor -- too hard to get around without speaking some Russian. Try St. Petersberg, maybe? And Moscow, though it's big, is probably the best place to start.

steveaustin said...

cool, thanks. yeah it is probably looking like st.p now. although i wanted to be more intrepid, i guess i'm starting to show my age and favouring the easier options nowadays.

will let you know what i think of the place when i get back

Colin said...

I have 2 years in Peru, 1 in AQP 1 in Lima.

Indian women are fat because their diets are all rice, potatoes, and bread. No fruit/veggies (fiber), and not enough money for sufficient protein.

"Obese" is a strong word. Fat yes, but nothing compared to American obesity. My Peruvian wife still can't believe the motorized "rascals" here.

Peru is the safest I've seen of Latin America. One major problem, however, is worse in Peru than anywhere else I visited: TAXIS. See my article on how to take safe taxis here: http://www.expat-chronicles.com/2009/07/taxis-in-colombia-vs-peru/

Besides taxis, here's what I told English Teacher X in an email: "Besides taxis, you'll only get in trouble in Peru if you start trolling chola chicks in poor neighborhoods or regularly run with Peruvians who snort coke or smoke crack."

StevieAustin said...

right, as promised i visited st. petersburg.

i am too old for this shit. and there is no way i would teach in, well anywhere, for esl money again. even for pussy.

but Pburg is a nice place that would have been better done with a bigger budget.

i fucked up and got spiked and rolled in a strip club which was cunty because it had me on the toilet for a day and a half, and then discovered i was broke for the remaining two.

shit happens, but fuck it, too old for this shit anyway.

englishteacherx said...

Ah, yes, the funny story at 27 becomes the embarassing thing you don't tell anybody at 37.

Anonymous said...

So much for "the reality of Russia" there, eh, Stone Cold Steve Austin?

StevieAustin said...

yeah exactly, only told 1 mate about this story.

everyone gets my cultural reference wrong, or my age anyhow. i'm a child of the early 80's and there is only one steve austin, and he cost $6 million dollars...