Friday, 17 June 2011

Who's that guy? - PLN Interview number 2 with @europeaantje (Guido)

This time I interviewed Guido (a.k.a @europeaantje). I met Guido on Twitter, and had the pleasure of tweeting him this year , at  the TESOL Spain Convention in Madrid in March. Guido is from Belgium but lives in Sevilla , you can find him on twitter and he has a toolshed somewhere too. Many thanks to Guido because he took the time to be interviewed, even though he's planning a big move! A big #FF to YOU!

1) If your students were to label you with 3 adjectives, what might they be?

 I asked my teenage students. This is what they said:

● “qualified”


● “strict”

2) What would we find in your refrigerator right now?


the usual breakfast food, sandwich fillings, yoghurt, veggies and some left-over gazpacho;
the special homemade candy to make brigadeiro …. and lots of drinks (the local Cruzcampo beer, summer wine etc) for our Big Farewell Do in the park Sunday 19 June. Guido and his family are moving back to his native Belgium this summer in search of an even brighter future...

3) If you weren’t a teacher, what might your profession be?

 A postman, a builder or a fruit farmer (nearly became one in New Zealand)

4) What do you find most difficult about the teaching profession, or What has been your most difficult class as a teacher?

 The most difficult part of being an EFL teacher in Spain is getting to the end of the month with the money I make. Something´s that been grating me for a long time is the fact that a teacher who contributes to the education of children and adds value to society makes infinitely less than bankers who shift other people´s money and immerse the planet in an economic crisis that others need to try and pay their way out of.

I can´t remember ever having taught a really difficult class but that is probably saying more about my memory than about the classes I´ve had.

5) What was the last book/movie you read/saw, and what have you seen/read way too many times?

Last books: the Spanish translation of “O Homem Duplicado” by José Saramago and “The Stories of English” by David Crystal.
Last movie: I can´t watch movies til the end. I can´t help but see people pretending to be someone they are not.
 Seen too often: Here´s a real Belgian. After too many viewings my kids now think this is their grandfather.

Extra question.
We met online on twitter and you did a presentation at TESOL Spain in March about Twitter so, my extra question to you is, What are the top three reasons teachers should use Twitter?
to learn and develop professionally
● to connect, share and collaborate
● to have fun (and make conference going more fun)

There´s real people behind those funny names:
@bcnpaul1=Paul; @fuertesun=you!; @sallyswinfen=Sally; she who doesn´t tweet=Alison; @lingliziya=Kirsten; esolcourses=Sue; @michelleworgan=Michelle

The End!


  1. Hey Leahn and Guido !

    Love the photo adjectives.

    I've asked myself the same question about "teachers and bankers" before. I've found few good answers and the ones that I think are the BEST are those that are least known and seemingly least "feasible". Nuff pessimizing... suffice it to say:

    "Don't worry be happy" cuz we can't control the wind, but we can control our sails. And being a teacher is obviously rewarding in ways that go beyond the 'financial' and yet... still...

    Keep rockin out in yer own lil' worlds. Cheers, b

  2. Yeah - great read... Is that something about getting away from government then :-P

  3. @Leahn,
    thank you for making me feel part of the PLN interview movement. I´d always had that urge to take a picture of my fridge and show it to the world :-)

    who started all of this?!
    and... I´m hoping for a southerly breeze when I set my sails to head north this summer. Salut!

    how to make beijinho:

    um beijo!

  4. Hi Leahn and Guido,
    I love the idea of including a photo of your fridge - don't know why it hasn't occured to any of the rest of us!
    Bon Voyage Guido, and good luck with settling back in to life in Belgium.

  5. Hi all,

    Yep Sandy, the fridge photo idea was pure genious, apart from not thinking about it, I'm pretty sure that I would have had to spend an hour cleaning mine before showing it to the world!

    @Guido I've put the link in for the truffles.... sorry I missed it!

    @Brad I'd still like to earn what a banker does...even though it's very rewarding. I've woken up this morning with a stiff neck. Yesterday I over did it in a school show playing the air guitar.... what banker can say that!

    @elizabeth_anne government? Is @Guido on the run?

    Thanks guys,


  6. Hi guys, thanks for this, good to get to know you better.

  7. Hi Leahn and Guido!


    Thanks so so much for interviewing Guido. He is awesome and so funny! And such a great person and educator. I would love to meet both of you face to face and soon!!!!

    Hi Guiiiidddoooooo!!!

    What a great idea to put pics along with the adjectives that describe you and of your fridge. If you saw my fridge, 90% of it would be food that contains chocolate! Ha ha!

    I wish you and your family all the best on your return to Belgium. Good luck and whoop whoop!

    All the best to both of you,

  8. @Leahn.... stiff neck = overdoing airguitar ROFLMAO Nice work

    Elizabeth Anne hit it on the head... government, or really large organizations that lose sight of individuals and environment. We lose our roots when we think too big, and large organizations think big.

    Back to the forest, back to 10, 15, 20 of us, and no more banker-teacher salary worries... though... would there still be air guitar fun ? ;-)

  9. hehe @all,

    yeah, that fridge pic took a lot of convincing someone :-)

    thank you for your support with the move to Belgium. Apparently, Albert II is offering bankers´ wages to the first person who can form a government for the country so there is still a future for me if I can´t find a job :-)

    Hasta siempre! Guido

  10. Thanks for giving us a better insight into Guido.
    I am really enjoying all the things we have been finding out about each other.

  11. Dearest Guido,

    Loved learning a bit more about you and that you are teaching people how to make brigadeiro. I have now decided to take a few cans of Leite Moça and Nescau to Paris in november to make the PLN there some brigadeiro ;-)

    here in Brazil I struggle with the same low pay for teachers - and I work at the best paying school in the city! But my love for teaching and, as you said, the fact we contribute to society, we are actually trying to make things better keeps me hooked. People like you make the difference Guido. :-)

    Best of luck with the moving, starting Tesol Belgium (I promise to go to the first conference!) and everything else you do in life. I really hope we meet sometime.

    Beijo bem grande,


  12. Dear Leahn,

    Thank you for interviewing Guido. He's a great memeber of my PLN - as you - and I loved reading about him. I loved how visual it was!!!

    Question is: who is interviewing you? Or have I missed something?



  13. Hi all,

    Genius interview idea @Brad!

    @Sue nice to see you here!

    @Vicky yes, he is funny man!

    @Cecilia hi, and thanks....I'm over at Janet Bianchinini's blog... I missed @esolcourses interview over at Vicky's. I must pay more attention when reading my Google Reader...... (it's my age)

    Enjoy your Sunday all, I'm off to a flea market.


  14. Hi Leahn & Guido!

    Great interviewer & Great interviewee!

    Guido, stop & think before leaving for Belgium, I'm sure the Greek government could use your wisdom,too.

    Look forward to meeting you both at some point. TESOL France, maybe?

    Good luck with your new beginning in Belgium.


  15. Nice to read about you, Guido! Welcome back to this slightly surrealistic but in many ways fantastic country! We might meet one day at an EFL event, who knows. And if you still need that tea lady for the first TESOL Belgium, you know where to find me!;-)
    Heel leuk om tenminste één Belg in mijn PLN te hebben :-)

  16. Conclusion:

    stuff government and let´s all journey into the forest to set up TESOL Belgium with some air guitars, some condensed milk and a Google Reader! Don´t forget the tea please, Mieke!

    [insert :-)]


  17. Hi to both for the great interview.

    Guido - sad to hear the rumours confirmed that you'll be leaving us here in Spain :( Still, I'm sure we'll meet online and at some conference soon.

    BTW, once we abolish the banks, there'll be more money for the rest of us ;) Then we might get paid properly...

    I wish you all the best back home.