November 11 – 17
Friday was my last day of school. In the morning I had “Morning English” where the students stop and read an English dialogue. Afterwards, I taught 3 classes of 2nd graders. My afternoon was pretty boring because I’d already cleaned out my desk. I basically just had to sit around and wait for quitting time (much like most afternoons).
Dave picked me up from school and then we headed back to my apartment. My apartment owner was supposed to come over at 5:00 to tell me how much I owed in utilities. After that, we headed to Haeundae for a goodbye dinner with my friends that hadn’t already left Korea. It was our last night all together before Shanna and Yangyee went back to the States and before I moved to Ulsan.
Do you remember when I said I had girls following me around all day? I have an app on my iPhone called “Loopcam.” It lets you take up to 50 pictures in a row and it turns them into a .gif file. I opened my office door, stepped outside and this is what happened. These girls ran straight from their classroom to me.
Afterwards, I let them see and they thought it was really cool so we made another one.
The vice principal announced that I was leaving during the morning broadcast on Wednesday so all of the students finally knew it was my last week. JuHye was teaching 1st grade that morning and one of the classes really wanted to say goodbye so I went down to say bye to them. There are 2 students in that class that LOVE me. One of them is this chubby boy. He is just the cutest thing and he yells my name and gets so excited every time he sees me.
At the beginning of my 5th grade classes I explained that it was my last class with them and that I was going home because my brother was getting married. Each class had the same reaction… silence. It was so weird! The 6th graders were so vocal and the 5th graders just sat there. Maybe they just didn’t have enough English to express themselves.
JuHye and I left work early to inventory my apartment. It’s pretty standard. The school has to make sure everything that was in the apartment when I got there is still there. Afterwards, we met up with all of my past and present co-teachers for one last dinner.
Tuesday was my last day with the 6th graders. Many already knew that I was leaving, but some were really surprised. Even though I usually dread teaching the 6th graders, class went well on Tuesday. The students were distracted from being jerks by the fact that I was leaving. A few students shouted out “Nooooo!” each class. It was cute. The students were really curious about the replacement teacher. They all wanted to know if it was a boy or a girl. The boys were a little disappointed when it was another girl.
Sadly, I only thought to take my camera to one class on Tuesday.
During my last week of school I tried to take lots of pictures so I could share them with all of you.
One of the things I don’t think I’ll miss very much is school lunch. Most days weren’t very appetizing. The teachers I ate lunch with were really sweet. They didn’t speak English, but they were always kind to me. In fact, on Friday, one of the teachers gave me a book. In the group picture, she is the one on the end giving the peace sign. The book was written in Korean by a very famous monk. She said that even though I couldn’t read the book, I could enjoy the paintings in each chapter. It was really touching to know that even though we couldn’t communicate, they still really liked me.
I realize that in a year and a half I’ve never shared pictures of my apartment. The next few blog posts will be a little tour of my place.
This is my bathroom. It may not seem like much, but I’m actually really fortunate to have my bathroom set up like this. A lot of teacher apartments just have shower heads attached to the wall over their bathroom sink. My shower is somewhat separate.