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Portfolio 11

I have been in New Zealand for almost two years now, and I have learned many things. I may miss Thailand and people there most of the time, but I also feel like it is a privilege to go through difficult things and learn from experiences and people around me while living here. It is challenging for me to step out of my comfort zone and experience another world, a world beyond my imagination. After I finish my studies, I plan to do many things in order to enjoy life in Auckland. For example, I would like to travel around Auckland, go to church and participate more in church activities, and make more friends. I just hope that there could be something good out there for me to discover. It should be interesting to be a person who views the world from different perspectives, who is given the opportunities to see things in different angles. I have learned a lot while living at this dormitory where you can notice how people from different ethnic groups live their lives. During the early days of their arrival here, they seemed to mix well with people from other ethnic groups, but after a while there appear to be obvious divisions where people from the same ethnic groups socialize exclusively with their own groups. I learned from Lily’s grandparents who have been in New Zealand for more than ten years, and are so afraid to step out of their comfort zone. I learned from Sally, a 56-year-old classmate from Taiwan who has been in New Zealand for many years and had to take care of her 80-year-old mother, but still wanted to step out of her comfort zone to pursue her education. Unfortunately, she couldn’t make it. I learned from the conflict with the residential manager and my former neighbor, one of the most painful experiences I have ever had. And I learned from Steve being a good host to many international students. My life in New Zealand may be considered hard if compared to my life in my own country, but it is a very interesting one. When I go back to Thailand to teach, I will not only be able to teach English, but I can also teach my students about living abroad; i.e. how to deal with people, cultural differences, and different ways of thinking. As there are a growing number of students in my school getting scholarships from the government to study abroad every year, my stories of experiences here could be more or less useful to them.