Saturday, November 26, 2005

Water-Lieu Day 5: Still No Water

I'm running out of clever post titles as this supposed disaster continues. It wasn't really a disaster, and it certainly didn't need to be as whacked-out insane and... retarded as it was, but it was. Mostly thanks to lies and disinformation. My good friend Jason holds the theory that perhaps all the rumors were spread in an effort to actually create chaos and mistrust, as perhaps people will panic less if they don't know whats going on or who to trust. Either way, I found out today that MY OWN BOSS fled the city and left us here with full intention of working every possible hour despite all public schools and most private schools having been closed. Good luck getting my trust/supprt/faith back, boss. Here's looking at you.

I had to face this Saturday just like I've had to face every other Saturday: 8 hours of teaching and 12 hours around the school. As the weather is consistantly hovering just above 0, I've got to bundle up just for the two block walk. But today, not having the ability to shower, I didn't have to worry about frost forming around damp hair or aftershave freezing outright. Of course, not having the ability to shower doesn't put me in a very presentable mood, and my eyes are a bit strained from constant use of my glasses, not to mention it isnt fair to rob the world of these gorgeous baby blues. However, better to don the specs than risk a zombifiying case of the pink eye.

My first class on Saturday is "Go-Go" level, 3-5 year olds for the most part. I only had three students today, so we played Go Fish and completed an alphabet maze activity and... well, I forget what else we did. I'm really not suited for teaching this age level, but I'm stuck doing it for better or worse until we change the system (and I'm trying, don't worry!). Luckily, the snot spewing little racist couldn't make it today, so it was a bit more peaceful than usual. Good for my nerves.

Next up came "Chatterbox" with Sissi where the kids are more around the 6-10 age group. Only five students (out of 15) showed, and no way in hell was I going to continue with my lesson plan only to have to repeat it again next week, so I gave them a spelling test, played hangman (with spelling lessons tied in!), and, yes, Go Fish. I love Go Fish. It really is a great standbye.

From Chatterbox I role into "Cambridge," which stands as my bread and butter. These students are preteens-15 year olds, and I've got more Cambridge than any other level. Their ability is good enough that I can play around with them in class, but not so good that my class is ever easy. Not even close, actually. I've got a rep, that is for sure, and it does not involve playing games or being easy. Today I departed from our text book to pound prefixes and suffixes into the students who dare show, and they certainly learned something. Sure, I dangled a massive Hershey's bar in front of them as a reward, but I didn't let a single kid get a lick. They didn't finish their work fast enough. Not my problem. They know that. Seven and a half months of teaching them later and they even respect that.

Usually after my Cambridge class I vamoose to get some fresh air, often at a local cafe where I can sip a coffee and reread the Chronicles of Narnia or Catcher in the Rye over cheescake or at a cozy soup restaurant, but as the cafe is closed with the water stoppage and I don't trust a Chinese restaurant further than I can spit until the water is back on, I hung around the school. Not always a good thing, as time like this I usually drift into a really inquisitive mood and pressure answers from people who don't know. Today I was trying to learn about the Chinese legal system as a man is sueing the Party over this water debacle and the subsequent lies but, well, no one really could grasp what I was getting at. Basically what they said was "You can't sue the government, they control the courts! It's useless!" At least I got that.

The day ended with a whimper as I taught some tired advanced students about the history of Thanksgiving. Now I'm home. I'm going to have a scotch and watch a movie to unwind because I just taught 8 hours over 12 hours and thats 1/3 of my workweek. Oo-whee.


At 9:38 AM, Blogger Tousled Pigtails said...

Yahoo tells me that your water is back on. It also tells me that your mayor has come up with the same kind of crackpot "safety" color code system we use here for homeland security. On the bright said, the PRC has apologized for this little mishap and has even apologized to Russia. On the not so bright side, there was another chemical plant explosion in a different region in China. You guys have an exploding problem there it appears....

At 1:02 PM, Blogger Bridgit said...


At 11:35 PM, Blogger Canadian said...

What lovely hairy arms.Kiss me,Missing link


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