Exercise, Snails, and… the Art of Flirting?

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Hello readers.

How is everyone? Things are still kind of stressful, right?

I actually talked to my Dad yesterday morning about what kind of things they were hearing over in the States about the North Korea-South Korea situation. My Dad is the first person who would be calling me and demanding that I come back home if anything even remotely bothered him about the current situation. He seemed pretty calm, and he wasn’t asking me to pack my bags or anything.

Also , I got a nice e-mail from a friend of mine who is currently serving in the Korean army. Of course, he couldn’t give me any kind of details but he let me know that no alert has been raised and he believes that there’s no reason to be worried. He even went as far as to point out to me that I am predisposed to unease because I’m not used to the whole North Korea- South Korea relationship dynamic.

Hello readers.

How is everyone? Things are still kind of stressful, right?

I actually talked to my Dad yesterday morning about what kind of things they were hearing over in the States about the North Korea-South Korea situation. My Dad is the first person who would be calling me and demanding that I come back home if anything even remotely bothered him about the current situation. He seemed pretty calm, and he wasn’t asking me to pack my bags or anything.

Also , I got a nice e-mail from a friend of mine who is currently serving in the Korean army. Of course, he couldn’t give me any kind of details but he let me know that no alert has been raised and he believes that there’s no reason to be worried. He even went as far as to point out to me that I am predisposed to unease because I’m not used to the whole North Korea- South Korea relationship dynamic.

So as for now, I’m feeling less restless and more at ease about everything. I hope that the rest of you reading are starting to feel the same way.

Alright, moving on from that topic.

EXERCISE

I’m trying to get my rear into gear with this exercise thing. I’ve been doing a pretty good job, but lately I’ve had so much to do that exercise keeps being knocked to the back of the list. Right now “LAUNDRY” is at the peak of my list screaming at the top of its lungs for attention. I HATE doing laundry. Back home, I guess I didn’t’ mind it so much when it was actually time to do it. That’s because I had a washer AND a dryer at my disposal. When I only have a washer and I have to hang up all my wet clothes in my one bedroom apartment to dry… laundry translates into “FRUSTRATING”.

Anyway, I actually almost talked myself out of going jogging this evening. But I think that after this post is up I’m going to quit being lazy and actually go. If my brothers can run a combined 20 miles a day, I can jog 1.5 miles four times a week. Geez. (Don’t laugh at me. I’ve just started this whole exercise thing. I can’t exactly go for 5 miles yet, but I’m working on it. OFF MY CASE!).

Don’t get me wrong, I like physical activities like biking, hiking, swimming, dancing (especially dancing) and all of that. But I don’t get to do that on a regular basis. I wanted to start doing regular exercise, get into some kind of routine. So I chose jogging. Any of you exercise junkies out there want to give me some pointers on how to be more motivated?

A TYPICAL DAY AT SCHOOL

Whoever is curious about how interesting my days usually are, I’ll give you a little peek into my life as a teacher.

“The flirting”

Woah there partner. Don’t go thinking that I’m talking about ME when I refer to flirting. I’m not the one batting my eyelashes, and there’s certainly no one posturing for my attention. I’m leaving that to the 6 year olds. That’s right. You heard me…

In the morning until 12:40 I teach Kindergarten. I love my kindy class. Sometimes can really grate on the nerves, but the majority of the time they’re just a great bunch of really intelligent, really sweet, kids.

Lilly and Benny

One of the girls, her name is Lilly, likes one of the boys in the class (his name is Benny). Lilly is the youngest, only 5 years old, but she’s the biggest and she looks the oldest out of the others. Benny is a slim whip of a boy, who I’m sometimes afraid to hug because he’s so skinny.

Today we were talking about the letter ‘M’.

We thought of the word “MUSCLE”. We all flexed our arms and had a great bit of fun. I pointed to Benny’s arm (because he was closest to me) and showed everyone where we have muscle. Of course, Benny is mostly skin and bones but the kids got the picture. Anyway. Lilly reached out and grabbed Benny’s arm and squeezed a bit here and there and then smiled and sat back, with her chin resting against the palm of her hand. It was one of the most adult looks I’ve ever seen on a kids face.

Benny kept flexing and finally Lilly looked up at me with that amused expression and motioned casually to Benny’s arm and said “It’s not muscle, I think.”

Benny got all flustered and in an attempt to prove himself to Lilly he flexed again and said desperately “No! I’m strong!”.

EunSung and HeeGwon

Another daily example of the flirting that goes on amongst the kindergartners is usually by HeeGwon and EunSung (I don’t know their English names). HeeGwon is a big 6 year old. He’s tall and a little chunky. EunSung is, my korean co-workers think, ‘some kind of midget’.

EunSung is really tiny, and she’s absolutely one of the cutest little girls at my school. You can see a photo of her with me if you go a few posts back.

Anyway. Where there is EunSung, there is HeeGown.

HeeGwon is constantly crowding EunSung. He’s always holding her hand, keeping her from getting pushed, telling her to stop running, or demanding that she behave when she acts out. In Art and Science class he asks questions for her and makes sure that she’s doing her project right before he concentrates on his. He also caries her things to class for her. Sometimes he even carries HER to class.

One day I walk out of the teacher’s room in time to see HeeGwon holding EunSung under her arms like a kid with a puppy, walking off to class. EunSung seemed unsurprised and was just kind of hanging there obediently.

If they grow up and get married to each other, someone owes me money.

THE CASE OF THE SNAIL

Snail is not a metaphor for anything. When I say ‘snail’ I mean ‘snail’.

Today was science class, and the project was ‘examine snails’. So we got a bunch of plastic cups, some packets of dirt, and a tupperware container full of large brown snails.

My reaction: “Uh… why?”

Anyway, out of fear for the snails lives I inform my kids that they are not to touch the snails, blow on the snails, pokes the snails with anything, or even speak loudly at the snails. They are to keep their hands to themselves and pay attention with their eyes.

Each kid gets a snail, so I have to put on some nice little kitchen gloves and distribute them out. I wasn’t grossed out, but I wasn’t exactly thrilled either. However, as time passed I actually started to get interested in those little creatures. I held one of them out over my hand to see if he would come out for the kids to see.

After a while his shyness went away and he slowly unfolded himself from his shell. I discovered, staring into the face of that little thing, that snails are cute. Snails are very cute. I got attached to the one I was holding for the kids to see. He got attached to me too. Literally.

The snail must have felt comfortable because he came all the way out of his shell and started looking around, craning his little head this way and that way to see what there was to see. He explored my finger for a while and then settled down a bit and just wiggled his little eyes around. That’s about the time I realized that I could get him off of me.

There was no panicking, but I knew that I was in a predicament. How do I get a snail off of my hand without hurting it? I poked at him a little bit to see if he would retreat back into his shell. He folded his eyes away, but didn’t move otherwise. I might as well have been tickling him for the amount of fear he showed at being poked at.

After distributing the rest of the snails to the students I head out of the classroom and to the kitchen to ask for help. After amusing some of the other teachers with the “Look, he’s upside down and still holding on!” trick, we finally figured that water was the best idea. We sprayed some water on him and I wiggled at him to get him unglued from me. Finally the water did the work and with a little “thuck’ he came unstuck from my hand.

I experienced a little separation anxiety at first, and I still fear for his little life in the hands of that 5 year old kindergartner. You know you lack some kind of important companionship when a snail becomes your best friend in the span of 5 minutes.

Quotes of the Day

Me: This is the baby chair!
My Students: Baby chair?!
Me: That’s right. If you do something bad you have to sit in this chair
so that you can be laughed at and ridiculed by your peers.

Student: (Trying to describe himself) “I have a black hair.”
Me: “Really? Only one?”
Student: “Uh….?”

THE HOLIDAY (that we don’t get)

Well everyone. Tomorrow is some kind of holiday (election day or something like that), and public schools and some work places get a little vacation. That does not include my school. Nope. We’ll be working that day, teaching kids who are going to be 10 shades of ticked off to be at private school when they have a holiday from public school.

I wonder how many just won’t show up tomorrow.

DANGER LIVE: CLUB WOMB JUNE 19th

For those of you who don’t know, there’s going to be this really big shindig down at Club WOMB at Gwangali on the 19th of June.

Here’s the event info: DANGER LIVE

Club WOMB is pretty great, so I suspect that this event will also be awesome.

Pre-sale tickets – 13,000₩

Before midnight June 19th – 15,000₩

Anytime after midnight – 19,000₩

Contact email : [email protected]

Subject header : Danger

>First and Last name:
>Ticket amount:
>phone number:
>email:
>total cost:

(Information provided by “EVERY EXPAT IN KOREA” on Facebook)

Alright now, that’s about it for this blog entry.

For those of you who work at public schools, enjoy your time off!
For those of you working tomorrow, take it easy!
And for those of you state-side and elsewhere, have a great day!

Until next blog,

~Auggie.



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