Michael’s real name is Michiel Smissaert, but he uses “Michael” with English speaking people and the Spanish / Portuguese “Miguel” because it is easier to pronounce for them and he likes to blend in.
Michael was born in 1966 in the Netherlands, studied Public Administration at the state university in Leiden and a few years after graduating there he studied during a year at SICA in Amsterdam, Application Programmer / Information analyst. He worked 4 years as a computer programmer for Syntegra.
In 2001 he left the Netherlands and lived in Guatemala (3 months), Costa Rica (7 years), Brasil (4 years), Dominican Republic (2 years), Germany (3 months), Bulgaria (4 years) and the Philippines (1 year).
Currently he lives the warmer part of the year in Bulgaria and the rest of the time mostly in the Philippines. In all these countries he worked as a translator and as a teacher of English and Dutch as a foreign language, both via Skype as well as in people’s houses. Michael speaks apart from his native language Dutch, also English (he also studied in the USA for 5 months), Spanish (he mostly learned that in Antigua, Guatemala, possibly the best place to learn Spanish with over 50 language schools), Portuguese and intermediate German.
Now he has to learn Bulgarian but he is having a hard time, because of the different alphabet (Cyrillic) and the fact that Bulgarian is a Slavic language, and the Slavic languages form an entirely different language group then the languages he already knows.
Michael loves to get to know new people and especially from different cultures. He is interested in many different subjects, like politics, music, personal development, internet marketing, football, chess and many more. Therefor and because he lived in so many countries he is not easily without a thing to say. His teaching method and his genuine interest in people make him a very effective teacher of foreign languages.
Currently he lives in a guesthouse with a private pool and sauna, 1 kilometer from the beach at the Black Sea coast in Bulgaria. He is planning to organize Dutch summer schools and chess (his other passion besides languages and music) weeks there as soon as the Corona crises is under control.
He is engaged to be married with his girlfriend from the Philippines.
If you have a question for Michael feel free to send him a message at the Contact page.
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