Wednesday, September 06, 2006


I got a free trip to Kokura today, in exchange for doing a few lessons, for which I conveniently also got paid. The new teacher is coming in the middle of the month, and I am filling in in the mean time. Part of that filling in includes these classes at a High School. They are only 45 minutes long, which seems to fly by after my 90 minute lessons, but the classes are much bigger – 30-40 students! It’s a challenge to just keep them focussed. I’m not bad at doing it now – I can generally keep them in line, stay cheerful and never lose my temper, and think of ways to teach them that don’t involve me standing at the front of the classroom nattering on and asking questions that are greeted by a huge silence. But it’s not my chosen teaching setting. At least I only have to do it once more, then the new teacher gets it, bless her. Poor thing.

I finished at 2pm, so I went shopping. I walked three blocks to my favorite bookstore – to find it closed. What a disappointment! But on the bright side, I undoubtedly saved bucketloads of money.

Next stop was a wee store tucked into the side of a restaurant disovered by my mother of all people! Hello Mum, I remembered about the tea set. I called her from the store, which intrigued the shop lady almost as much as it pleased mum, who got to kind-of- second-hand-choose the feature beads I bought there. The nice shop lady, who also serves her customers tiny cups of tea and chunks of black sugar, added in about six extra beads, including a dragon and a snake, when I told her that I was on the phone to my mother in New Zealand who had come to the shop two years ago and never forgot it. She asked me when I was going back to NZ, and when I replied that I would be sending the beads, she added another little present! It’s not beads, and Mum will find out soon enough what it is!

Finally, I found another book store, with one English magazine (which I bought) and a very tiny English book section, where I found nothing for me, but a Mr Tumnus book for Amy. She can read her Level 2 Narnia book!

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