Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Pre-Blogger email: October update

It took me about two weeks to finish this in about 4 attempts. Pathetic.


PS - I am okay. I should be home in Australia again after Winter camp. I'll stay there for a while then I'll probably go off to somewhere else for a year. I've been thinking about South America, maybe Chile or Argentina. Who knows. I haven't actually looked into the job situation there yet. But South America has ancient Mayan tombs and the Nazca Plateau and general mysteries, crystal skulls for example. Sounds great. We'll see.

Also, we now have a fridge in our apartment - big news worth celebrating. I can have yoghurt and milk with cereal and raisins and walnuts every morning. So good.

[The attached document:]

Yea, here are the images that they wouldn’t let me show you. Only by garnering sufficient goodwill and trust over the last 7 months of my stay here have I reached the point in my relations with the authorities where I am able to send you these never-before-seen (as far as I can remember although I may be wrong) images of life in Korea. Enjoy your privileged photo-montage insight into the Korean world of …. of Korea!

Contradictory Tea Cup

If you look closely, you can see that the words “A green pepper” accompany this picture of a red pepper. Contradictory? Yes. It often seems much more important that manufacturers manage to put English language on their products than the words that they choose make any sense. I have since lost this cup. I am currently using another cup adorned with a picture of a sunflower and the accompanying words “Flower: we present you to simple life”.

Paintballing Crew

I think I might have sent this one already, or one very much like it. At the end of last semester a bunch of us went paintballing near Busan. This would be a great picture but Richard’s head was cut off because he chose to pose standing somewhat Stallone Cobra-style behind us all on the highest sod of turf, and that is a great shame because Richard has a nice head, very British Cockney-like. When I think of Cockney Londoners, I think of Rick. Right now, Rick will be somewhere in Australia, probably wishing that his ancestors had not been so clever in avoiding capture by the constabulary, but instead been shipped off to sunny, beachy Australia, land of BBQs and Tim Tams and water conservation issues.

Teacher’s Day

Rather obviously, I think, teacher’s day is a day where students celebrate and appreciate their teachers. That works out just fine for me, being one of the latter myself. I suspected that something was afoot when I approached the classroom for homeroom class and noticed Yu-Gyeong, the class captain, waiting at the door as if she was waiting for me. As it turned out she was waiting for me. Class 24 had bought a cake and other snacks and some drinks. And then someone went crazy and started smearing cream on me, but that’s okay because it was very tasty cream.

Final TESOL certificate course graduates

Here we have some of Jinju’s finest: the graduating class of the Spring semester TESOL certificate program. TESOL stands for Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages by the way. So I guess I’m double qualified to teach English. And I’m going to start capitalizing the name of the language, English, again. I checked it on Dictionary.com’s style guide and apparently you should capitalize the names of languages, for example, Russian, Greek, Hebrew, etc. And now only 3 of these people still work here, including my intransigent self. You might notice that males are over-represented in this sample. I will also bring to your attention that fact that the guy in the light blue shirt at the top left is a bit of an alcoholic. I smile when I think of the many times that our taekwondo instructor had to tell John that his pants were the wrong way around.

I say Final TESOL because that was the last time the course was run. The new management that had come in had problems with it and wanted to scrap the whole thing, and they did.

Dinner with the Public Officials

Every semester there is a camp run at GNU for government employees. It’s an English camp and they have lessons and activities in English from 9 to 5 five days a week for about 6 weeks. The applicants who made it onto the camp are lucky enough that they are sent overseas towards the end of the camp to practice their English in context. This group went to Australia. Why do all the foreign teachers have an attitude.

My friend Paul does another crazy thing. That’s him with his hands in the air. Crazy Paul. And now he’s getting married. Crazy Paul.

My other family

Ummm, did I mention that I started a family here in Korea and I now have two sons? Here they are, Impy and Kronky. Good boys but they need to practice their English.

Week 3 class at Summer Camp

This would be middle school class F. They were a bit annoying because they were so loud and wouldn’t shut up and listen to me when I needed them to…but…at least they were being talkative and loud in English. It was quite a hot day that day and I was really glad I took my hat. This shot is taken on a field trip to Woo-bang Tower Land, so called because of the presence of Woo-Bang Tower in the Park. Mmm, simple. After being at Everland a few times, I have to say that Woo-Bang Tower Land was a bit of a lemon.

Sugary food plus kids plus amusement park rides equals sick!

I remember that there was at least one girl on this ride who was sick. Ha ha. I suppose it’s not really funny, but, ha ha. This ride is called the Viking by the way. There is a similar ride at Everland also called the Viking. Somehow, the Everland version is better. Woo-bang Tower Land just comes across as being a poor man’s Everland. Besides, it’s in Daegu. Daegu is nowhere! I’ve been there – it’s boring. However, I did see a snake in Daegu, the biggest snake I’ve seen in Korea. It was slithering into someone’s garage.

One more…

I am the Quiz King!

Summer camp contains many varied and stimulating activities conducted in English. This particular one is the quiz show we held in the auditorium. You can only see the middle school students here. The elementary and university students are doing other things. Note that when everyone is wearing the same shirt, everyone’s pants look somehow very similar, except for the one kid wearing the shorts with some kind of plaid pattern on them.

Well, that’s it for now. If you don’t hear from me for a while, it’s probably because the relevant authorities have detained me for questioning regarding allegations of possible espionage being conducted by myself for neighboring rogue states such with nuclear weapons. Hawaii for example. Oh well, enjoy and I’ll see ya later.


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