Welcome to Hand across the water!

Welcome! My name is Deirdre Hand & I’m moving to Indonesia in 13 days! This is my blog to keep people informed of my year teaching English and exploring Indonesia.
A quick background: I grew up in Southwest Virginia, in the Appalachian Mountains–the most beautiful place in the world (and no, I’m not biased).  I love my home, and one of the things I love best is traveling, and then returning to see how much I missed it.

A Floyd County fall day

I will be missing the fall in Virginia SO much.  But I’m also interested to experience a year of the same two seasons: dry and wet.
As an undergraduate, I went to Virginia Tech–not being quite ready to leave my beautiful mountains. I learned to watch football- and care!  (It helped that I was in the marching band).

Bridget, me & Jessica before some Hokie football!

Only picture I could find of the 4 of us! Updated version needed!

Following college, I went to Ireland to earn my CELTA (certificate for English Language Teaching to Adults).  Also took this time to bond with my amazing Irish cousins.

After this, I taught English in Prague for two years, absolutely fell in love with the city, and made some amazing friends.  I also got to travel around the Czech Republic and Central Europe quite a bit.

In front of Prague Castle

On the cottage, in the nature of the Czech Republic with Sophia

The summers between school years in Prague were spent teaching English at a summer camp near Brighton, England.  Manor Courses- awesome summer fun as the lanyards show! Leading groups of European teenagers around London was definitely  challenging.

English teachers moving into Buckingham Palace?

After two years in the Czech Republic, I decided to teach in Spain! (And also follow my bezzie, Sophia, around..)

Leaves in Granada

The Alhambra in Granada

So after traveling around Europe, I decided to come home and get my Master’s at Virginia Tech in ESL- teaching English as a Second Language.  It’s been wonderful to be home and be with friends and family again.  I’ve gotten to be at friends’ weddings and enjoy all four wonderful seasons in Virginia.

With Julie, pumpkin patching with our new friend

Best friends at Courtney’s wedding (JACKD!)

Macado’s Monday gang at the beach in South Carolina

I also got to catch up with my amazing cousins at our annual cousin reunion at our Nana’s in Florida.

Coolest family everrrr and the best Nana in the world!

There has also been lots of quality time with my family.  I’ve got two amazing sets of parents.

Ricky, Mom, me & Conor. Conor is almost taller than the Washington Monument!

Dad & Jennifer’s Wedding: Conor doing “the creep”

The past year and a half at home has been wonderful, and earning my Master’s was great, but I guess I knew it was only a matter of time before I got a bit restless again… So my awesome brother found a perfect job for me: the English Language Fellows.

Thanks bro!

So now I’m off to Indonesia, not sure what life will be like, but I’m excited to keep you all updated on the happenings of my life across the water.

(P.s. Did you get the Paul McCartney reference?? If not, shame on you.)

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About Deirdre Hand

"To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted." Bill Bryson
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6 Responses to Welcome to Hand across the water!

  1. Megan says:

    Deirdre we can’t wait to read all about your big adventure. You have already accomplished great things in your life and you are just getting started.
    Megan

  2. Amy says:

    Hello, I found this blog by pure chance via google as I’m hoping to move to Palembang too! Was just finding info about the city and found your blog 🙂 i dont move to Indonesia until the 10th/11th of September though. Also working in Brighton, England with EF Language Travel until next week… So just seeing those two pieces of info I just had to message you on this! My name is Amy and it’d be nice to meet up in Palembang sometime! Who are you working with whilst in Palembang?

    • deirdrehand says:

      Hey Amy, how exciting! I’m working at a university, IAIN Raden Fatah, teaching English. Where are you going to be working? I’d love to meet up when you get there! I’ll be at our orientation in Bandung for two weeks, so I might arrive back in Palembang around the same time you get there. Keep in touch 🙂 Deirdre

      • Amy says:

        Ohh wow that sounds really good! I’m going to be working as an English teacher too, with a company called EF. So excited and nervous at the same time, wonderful to know that you’ll be around roughly the same time as me 🙂 will most certainly keep in touch. Could even go to Indonesian classes together!

        Amy

  3. deirdrehand says:

    Hey Amy! I am in Palembang now, but will be in Jakarta/Bandung for the next two weeks. I get back the 13th, will you be here then? I’m so excited that you will be moving here, I haven’t seen a westerner since I got here! And I defo like the idea of going to Indonesian courses together! 🙂 my number once you get here is 0819 9510 1962

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