CRAVING HAMBURGERS: Day 15, Friday September 13 2013

Had a lazy morning and a big breakfast of eggs, fresh buns, and hash browns prepared by Nate. Spent the morning in the Gazebo behind our building reading, writing, and relaxing. We discovered exercise equipment by the park! We’d seen outdoor exercise equipment across the city, but didn’t realize we had some so close!

When it was time to go we decided to walk to work. I tried to convince Nate that we should be speaking only Chinese outside of our apartment, but he was a little skeptical. Could be because our vocabulary consists of four words.

I had was teaching Papaya about bathroom, so I had brought soap, shampoo, and toilet paper as props for class. Nate and I were both developing head colds, so the toilet paper became useful long before class started.

“Do you need the medicine?” Candy asked me.

“Probably,” I replied, “but I don’t know what to buy because I can’t read the labels!”

“Ah, Lainey will take you.” She turned to Lainey who had just entered the room, arms full of lesson materials “Lainey you will take Jennifer to buy the medicine ok?”

“AYAH, ten minutes!” Lainey cried, “Ten minutes!

“Oh it doesn’t have to be now,” I cried surprised they even mentioned it during work hours. “Whenever you’re ready.”

We walked to a small shop a block away from the school, “This is medicine place. See the cross.” Lainey told me. We went inside. It was a small thin shop, it’s walls filled with all kinds of voodoo pills that I could not read. Lainey talked to the doctor for a bit in Chinese. Three pill bottles appeared on the table. As they talked (it sounded like arguing, but I think that’s just how they talk) Lainey paused every once and a while to ask me my symptoms “Do you have a headache?” “Do you have a fever?” “Your throat is it sore?” after each question she would argue with the doctor more until one type of medicine came out on top.” Somewhat sketchy taking pills when I don’t know what they are. Felt a little funky afterwards, though it may have been in my head.

My class, Papaya was rough, they struggled to learn the new vocab, and then struggled even more with the sentences even though they were the same ones as last week only with a “him” or “her” instead of an “I”. I called break 10 minutes early feeling as though I was not going to get any farther without giving them a few minutes for the concepts to sink in. Shirley, who had been an awesome CT so far, took over the class, forced the kids to stay in their seats, and made each of them say the sentence before break. Half of them couldn’t do it no matter how much she bullied them. I was not impressed.

Talked to Shirley briefly during break, which put us back on better grounds for the rest of class. The children struggled painfully to present the sentences during the parent presentation, and afterwards I had one mother come up to me and voice her concerns in bad English. “I would like if do more repetition, and more pronunciation. I would like to learn pronunciation.” I tried to explain to her that in fact the entire class was repetition and pronunciation, but she did not understand. In the end I thanked her for her input.

Fell asleep trying to read my Monkey King book (a children’s book I picked up to try and learn the language with). So drained this week. Head cold is killing me.

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