Ryan’s Musings

Credit cards, for better or for worse, are here to stay.  Thus, it is important to chose the right one for your needs.  As an ESL teacher, I do a lot of traveling, so having a credit card that works well overseas and gives me rewards for purchases I’d have to make anyway (like airfare)...
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One of the values I hold for my life is minimalism: not having nothing, but also not having more than I need.  This really limits the amount of things I have to keep track of, keeps me from comparing my material possessions to others, and gives me the freedom to not be tied to any...
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Ah, the inevitable post you see from all bloggers.  Still, as someone obsessed with self-improvement it is important to reflect, and the end of the year is as good a time as any (though I do it much more often than once a year).  Also, as a writer, it is important to put these thoughts...
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Information current as of late 2017 and valid for the Migración office on Av. Río Amazonas, Quito 170515 Ecuador, like Colombia gives you 90-day visa on arrival.  Also like Colombia, it is possible to extend it another 90 days (and beyond, but I don’t have experience with the 1 year visa which combined with the others...
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Written 2017-12-15 Sometimes we have those days where we try to sleep but our minds are too active. I’m part of the writing group The Finishers, and one thing Mridu says is that for creative people, we need to express ourselves, and it can be detrimental if we don’t. So I got up at 1:30am...
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In trying to shorten the time it takes me to evaluate contracts for ESL jobs in China, I created a spreadsheet with some advanced functionality that allows one to enter their salary and teaching hours, and it will tell you the dollar amount per hour after-tax. It also works in reverse: you can enter the...
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Being an ESL teacher comes with many perks that you just won’t find in other areas of work.  Besides the obvious benefit of being able to live in another country for much longer than those with just a tourist visa, you will often encounter the following perks and drawbacks: Benefits Monetary Non-Monetary Positive Good salary...
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One of the things required to get a work permit in China is a very complete medical checkup.  As I am currently in Ecuador, I thought it might be interesting to share what it was like doing it outside of an English-speaking country. The medical form requires a basic medical checkup by a general practitioner,...
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Those of you following along know I’ve been recently looking for ESL jobs in China.  As I’ve mentioned before in Defending Your Business, it’s very important that you treat your work as a business and do what’s best for it and yourself. Negotiations seem to be a lost art these days: when you apply for...
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After climbing Pichincha, I realized how important it was to build up some strength.  So, the weekend after I went hiking up a nearby mountain of Mitad Del Mundo.  It was a hard climb, not because of the altitude but because it was very sandy and my shoes did not have enough tread to grip...
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