Summer term had a lot of surprises.
There was the MERS epidemic, which led to a 5 day escape to Jeju Island. Then there was the 48 hour Busan adventure for my birthday. There was the Speed saga which started with some simple fan service and ended with a fan signing and one of them telling me I had pretty eyes.
And looking back at my Spring term in review, there were things I told you to tune in for. Every single one of them came to pass. I just didn’t expect them to be so…big.
-More stories with more students:
Aiden: The child on the spectrum who the kids made fun of and I felt really bad for turned into the devil child who I still couldn’t hate because he is on the spectrum broke my toe. Did I mention I have a broken toe? I think I left that out purposefully. Well there it is. It’s only a splint for three weeks though so…yeah. Anyway, he broke my toe, and then his crazy dad came in and yelled at Sohee Teacher for an hour claiming that we didn’t “care enough” and then the other day he was choking taekwando Andy while playing a game and taekwando Andy had enough and punched him in the face. Andy cried as the welt got larger and purpler and gave him his stamps and 100won. Both Aiden and Taekwando Andy no longer attend our hagwan.
My Compass class (6 year olds) turned Telescope this term, I’ve enjoyed watching every single one of them grow. Especially Dorothy 2, who came in the first day so scared and now she is #1. Well, tied with Dorothy 1.
My Navi class (11 year olds): Eileen who was also new last term, blossomed into a star and speaks English loudly and confidently. It’s been amazing.
Liam and Helen: My two Discovery kids (11 years old). Incredibly intelligent, we would roll the dice to read the material and then chat the last 10 minutes of class about everything from shines to US presidents. I taught them how to play MASHO and apparently Liam taught his friends. So if MASHO becomes a middle school korean thing, I take full responsibility.
My Ocean class (10 year olds): turned Nina this term, and same as my compass and navi it’s been amazing watching their comprehension, reading, and speaking skills increase over 6 months.
Jake: This kid. He’s compass level but he’s a 9 year old—a big 9 year old. He may not have broken my toe, but he hid under the table every day before class. I made “korean pizzas” on the board—if you spoke korean or did anything else I didn’t approve of I filled in a slice. Fill in the pizza, everyone loses their stamps. Jake thought it was funny and would say “annyeong” 8 times till I filled in the pizza and I had to continually make pizzas until Jake filled in 7. And then there was the time he stole my sticky ball and threw it across the room at the window—then ran to the window and threw it back at the white board —and back again. And I couldn’t even chase after him because I’m in a splint. And then there was the time when class ended early and I gave everyone chocolate and he elbowed little Hannah in the back purposefully to take hers and she cried.
My Key class: Tony, Hulk and Peter (see what they did there) started as the class that was supposed to be my break, to the class that gave me nightmares, to the class that taught me how to control 3 crazy 5-year-old boys. The trick? Pin them all against each other. And stamps. Many many stamps. Tony started out not knowing the alphabet (a prerequisite to Langcon but it’s a business so we’ll take him) to now being able to identify the letter “e”.
Me (struggling to be heard over the pushing and shoving): and what LETTER IS THIS?
Tony jumps across the table to raise his hand higher than everyone else: EEEEEEE
Me: thank you tony.
–Drama with my director is the understatement of this blog. My making life reached its climax when she kicked me out of this hagwan, yet “couldn’t recommend me anywhere else”. I’ve been through some low points I don’t like to dwell on these past three months. I didn’t expect that.
-I moved out of my craphole apartment, to a slightly larger and definitely cleaner apartment down the street, which was what I had hoped. But then, due to the drama mentioned above, I will actually be moving to Seoul this weekend. I didn’t expect that.
-I went to some random festivals. Always random festivals. But a pork festival on Jeju Island? Didn’t expect that.
-I did go to Japan. Oh Tokyo. Tokyo went from being the capital city of a country on a map to a place with many memories. Friends locked in love motels, maid cafes, seeing Shibuya at all hours of the day (and night). Didn’t expect that.
Looking at this list, it makes me worried to make another. Everything was done on such an epic level—all of them exhausted me. In fact, just sitting on my bed writing about them has me want to turn over and sleep for 10 hours. But no—I’m going to make another one.
Fall Term will end on November 28. By then I will have:
-Moved to Seoul. The day Fall Term technically starts actually.
-Been in my new sub job—for better or for worse. By then I will at least have an idea of what I’m doing. (?)
-More K-pop concerts. I actually already have two planned for the month of September so…
-More random festivals. With Halloween occurring, there will no doubt be festivals.
-Halloween and Thanksgiving. While there will no doubt be some homesickness, I plan to keep myself busy. I’ve heard that there are some excellent…activities…in Seoul. And I’ve heard that Halloween in Korea is very different, but also very good.
-Oh yeah I’m going to Hong Kong at the end of the September with my Korean co-teacher. We have literally 48 hours there whereby we are squeezing in Disneyland, Victoria Peak, the shopping square, and finding a place to stay (…)
So here’s to Fall Term—and whatever else awaits.