Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Delta Stands For Change

In Which Many Changes Are Enumerated And Explained

I have been here for one year, peerless readers, and two weeks. In the last three days I have changed schools, moved, and lost my roommate to the lure of identifiable food lacking MSG. I am now living in a little fourth floor efficiency with huge windows that I shall have to Do Something About when winter comes. They do not quite close all the way. Given a choice, however, between that and endless repetitions of Madonna from a bar downstairs, I’ll take the draftiness. I haven’t finished finding a place for everything yet, but with luck and perseverance I shall win out in the end.

I am no longer in the employ of Kojen English Language Schools. The reason for this, it pains me to relate, can be laid entirely at the feet of [...imagine longwinded fulmination here - leave a comment for details...] I shall miss my friends among them.

I shall also miss Katy, who flew back to the United States on the last day of August. It will be odd to live alone again. I expect it will involve a good deal of going to bed earlier, and more wandering around. Perhaps I shall even improve my Chinese! I will also have more time to devote to studying calculus and drawing. Poor exchanges for a near constant companion, but I believe it is time to catch up on my self-improvement.

My classes now number four. I have two on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, one on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and one on Saturdays. The latter two are known as “boost” classes, presumably for students who are moving more slowly than the curriculum otherwise allows, or more quickly. The Tuesday/Thursday one is two hours long and ends at 7:00pm. The Saturday class is three hours long and ends at noon. The students are struggling with concepts like “finding the main idea of a paragraph.”

On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays I have a two-hour class ending at 3:30, and another ending at 6:30. The first is a lower-level class just learning basic nouns and verbs. The second is a higher level class in which I am permitted (nay, encouraged) to read from a Roald Dahl book, and teach them science. For illustrative purposes, here is a somewhat exaggerated unfinished cartoon depicting my reaction to that last.

None of my classes ends later than 7:00pm, which means that I can stroll leisurely towards a bus or from the MRT, passing fruit stands redolent with pungent guava and sweet mango, stopping at one of the multitudinous 7-11s to buy an Australian ice-cream bar, having dinner at a little Taiwatalian restaurant or getting take-out from a tiny Thai cart. It’s cooler here at night, and walking alone in it reminds me of things – Madison before I knew it as a college student, Chicago after seeing a play, New York City while visiting a friend. Perhaps it is something about being solitary that refracts the night into sounds and smells and sights that match memories of places I’m not, and some of places I’ve never been.


Hobbes said...

Sounds awesome, particularly in that you are no longer dying under a class load. You'll have to tell me about Kojen sometime, though...

Katy Williams said...


I hope very much that you enjoy wandering. I quite liked the area in which you now reside for that kind of thing, and I imagine you'll meet the occasion with even more success, seeing as you've been keeping up your Chinese with Big Pink Super Cat.

Missing you,

pickett said...

I am leaving a comment for said details.

Kat G said...

But it sounds like you've found work again, even if you're no longer working at the place you were before? You sounded like an amazing teacher.