Saturday, March 14, 2009

White Pi Day

3/14, known mostly as Pi Day in the States, is also White Day here. Valentine's Day is when girls give candy and things to boys; White Day is when boys give candy to girls. A lot of the students just celebrated it yesterday and so all of the girls were absolutely wired on sugar. Some of the girls shared their candy with me—gifts to the teacher isn't really brown-nosing here, though it's also not like an everyday thing. (One piece that I got was some taffy thing that tasted remarkably like funnel cake. I don't know how they did that.)

I also managed to come down with a cold on Tuesday and have been fighting it off ever since. I'm feeling pretty good by now, with one hitch: I've lost my voice. I was supposed to teach all day on Friday and have the head teacher observe me to give me pointers, but midway through my second class I literally couldn't talk anymore. I don't know what I'm going to do if I still can't talk on Monday, but hopefully a full weekend of not talking will help. In any case, I will be jumping into this teaching with less-than-optimal hands-on training. We'll see what happens.

My illness didn't stop me from going to the welcoming party the principal of the school had for me, which was dinner and drinks at a traditional Korean restaurant. We sat on the floor and had roasted duck that cooked in a rotisserie built right into the table. I also had duck soup (spicy!) alas they were all out of animal crackers*, the best kimchi I've had so far, some greens in vinegar, and black bean rice. I had my first taste of Soju, and despite the other foreign teachers' stories about it, found it not really all that bad. Certainly not half as repulsive as tequila.

*obligatory Marx Brothers joke

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