who ... moi?

a social butterfly: scared of much, but not of many. never lets the truth get in the way of a good story. not a fan of acronyms, snakes and angelina jolie. a HUGE fan of Fathead.

this blog is black for ENERGY-SAVING reasons.

thanks for your understanding.
if it's too dark, put your glasses on old one.

Friday, January 8, 2010

ramblings from afar

i've been thinking about a particular group of individuals within our circle back home.  you know the one's that won't eat mushrooms, tomatoes and anything that comes in a sauce?  the one's who think a salad is lettuce, cucumber and tomato -  and any additions are considered completely inappropriate? y'know who you are ...

well, if you were here with us (crowder and holman: this one's for you) - you'd die of malnutrition within the next few days. 

the food in the canteen is supposed to be korean  - but i'm pretty sure it's the canteen-version thereof.  from all the rave reviews korean food gets there's no way they are referring to the stuff we get served. take the national dish, for instance.

allow me to introduce you to kim chee.  this is their national staple dish - which is nothing short of utterly disgusting.
to make matters more bizzare, they eat it with breakfast.
they eat it with lunch.
and yes, dear friends - they eat it with supper.

every korean smells of it, wherever you go.   it's boiled cabbage that they pickle in chilli powder and serve cold.  it's kind of like eating spicy kelp ... three times a day.

in terms of culinary trends - this place's style is all about odd. i mean, it's snowing right?  and all their veg dishes (of which there are many at every meal) are ICE cold.  weird i tell you.

we've not been into town to eat yet, as there's been no time.  which sucks.  fortunately tomorrow night we have a double-birthday dinner at a jen-you-ine korean restaurant, which apparently is really festive.

we'll also try to get into the markets asap - i really want to try the food from the street vendors - as that's the best, most authentic and freshest (or so we've been told). 

Fathead did manage to buy a few of the ingredients that would normally contribute to something homely, like a bolognaise. to treat ourselves for the (almost complete) week, we decided to whip up a little ditty that smelt and felt like home.  unfortunately, all the ingredients that make my bolognaise sauce worth writing home about, were not at our disposal.

                                                    so in short, tonight's meal was not, in fact, worth writing home about.

that said, enough about the culture shock my taste buds are experiencing ...

it's really difficult getting up in the morning - the sun sets so early here, once you leave class it's "night time" and then you wake up in pitch darkness and it's freezing outside.  but once you're up and in class, it's cool again.

it's incredible how much energy these kids have, and how much they can take out of you.

i suddenly find myself with new admiration for all the teachers i've had (and tortured) in my life. it's not a job to be laughed at (and "neither is being a parent" mom).

the kids range from 8 - 16 years old.  the little ones are great, as they listen to everything you say and do pretty much everything you ask them to.  the older they get, the more full of kak they are.  they all have the usual teenage-hangups.

the boys and girls HATE eachother - getting them to even sit next to the opposite sex is like asking them to hold a rabid dog.

Fathead lost his cool with one little boy yesterday, who apparently wouldn't do anything he told him to.  eventually he just snapped and yelled in the class - which i happen to think is hilarious. can you imagine what went through that little boy's pip as this giant white neanderthal of a man bellowed down at him, like baloo?

the little girls here are all fascinated by Fathead. they keep asking to see his arm hair (asian's not being very hairy people, they've never seen as man like him).

much like me, they do adore him though.

i was told by one girl that she's very "proud" of me, because  "i have yellow hair".  they are very sweet with the way that they use the language.  my name also blows their minds ...  so they say it all the time. they call everyone by their name, and then the title "teacher".  so i am "cat-teacher". 

in a cruel twist of language, the korean's have the same symbol for "R" and "L" ... so it's quite difficult to understand them when they speak engrish.  but we're getting there!  i've started reading a guide on how to learn korean quickly - so am trying to wrap my mind around their symbols at lighting pace.

this'll help with figuring out where the busses / subways / taxi's are going. and,  i suspect, will also prevent us from purchasing minced dog.

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