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Trainee Stories – Brian

We ask one of our current trainees, Brian, a few questions.

Where are you from and why did you choose the Czech Republic?

I was born and raised on the south coast of Ireland in Cork in a little harbour town called Cobh. (Pronounced: “Cove”). Fun fact, Cobh was the last port of call for the Titanic in 1912. There is a running joke around Ireland that the folk down in Cork can’t be trusted because they sank the Titanic! I chose the Czech Republic because aside from the TEFL course seeming like an amazing opportunity for career advancement and adventure, I had never been to the old eastern bloc. I have done a fair bit of traveling around Western Europe, but I always wanted to come to this neck of the woods. I have always been a big history buff and this part of the world is absolutely steeped in it! Every single brick or cobblestone could tell its own story. This is absolutely fascinating to me!

What do you think of Prague?

As the saying goes, so far so good. Well, so far so great! I’ve already mentioned the history but the architecture here is incredible also. I may have to visit a chiropractor because I’m craning my neck so much! Every building is as stunning as the last. Yesterday, I visited Prazsky Hrad, the largest cathedral in the Czech Republic, and just wow! An architectural masterpiece. To even begin to comprehend the work that went into designing and building it boggles the mind. The longer you stand there and admire its magnificence, the more beautiful it gets. Just one work of art in a city full of them.

The public transport here is incredibly efficient. The people are friendly. It is obviously a major capital city, but it has a small-town, authentic feel. You don’t get the feeling that you’re just another rat trying to win the race. The food is good, the beer is plentiful……and it’s so cheap!

How are you finding the course so far?

So far, it is as I expected it to be. I’ve been fortunate to have landed with a wonderful group of classmates. The trainers are all amazing and passionate teachers. It has been a bit of a shock to the system being back in a school/college type environment because it has been so long for me, but I knew what I was signing up for! The student accommodation is good and just a 5-minute tram journey to the TEFL offices. Nice and handy!

What has surprised you so far (either course related or Prague related)?

How little money is coming from my bank account! As I’ve alluded to, it is so cheap here! Back in Ireland, you dread looking at your bank account after grocery shopping, or a night on the town. Don’t even get me started on the rent situation. Here it is actually a pleasant surprise.

What are your plans for after the course?

At this point in time, I have no idea. I would like to stay in Prague for sure, but I’ve also always wanted to see southeast Asia, particularly Vietnam. I’ll have to see what sort of job offers pop up but I would like SE Asia or South/Central America. So many options!

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