Today several strange things happened, plus lots of not-so-strange things happened too. It was a pretty eventful day. The details:
My two periods of 4th graders were a piece of cake today. I gave them a test, used my teacher abilities to get them “working quietly, alone” on it, then we corrected it. Two periods of that and I headed home. I wore my brown corduroy pants and my favorite red fleece today, and my black running beanie and running gloves tied the outfit together. It was about 40 degrees on my walk from home to school.
I got back home and had almost 2 hours before my HS classes. So I made cornbread for my students. Technically I designated this batch for my 10e kids, which were the first class I would see today. I packaged it up, made the honey butter, and headed over. The halls were oddly quiet for being break time. I walked into the teacher’s lounge, 10 minutes early, and was quickly (but politely) told that today was a shortened schedule, and that my class was already going. I read about this in CETP teachers’ blogs last year, and it finally happened to me. I went to class, thanked the teacher who was covering for me (I made sure to have someone translate for her that I wasn’t told about the change…so she doesn’t think I’m a flake), and our class was ready to start as planned. At that moment, Lilla informed me there was one minute left of class. Dang, I’m really not happy about this, because that class is really great and I had some fun stuff planned. I only see them 1x per week anyway and now I have to wait again. I was also told that next Monday is a similar schedule, so good news: now I know about it! bad news: another shortened period with 10e next week. So after 1 minute of class, I headed back to the teacher’s lounge for my break period.
During this break period, I learned that many of the grade levels had their classes cancelled for the rest of the day, but mine wasn’t thankfully. I logged on to the computer to send a word doc (an article for class) down to the printer. At first the printer room was being used, because it is also the media studio. Then the printer wouldn’t work. Eventually it did, although I was asked to bring them the file on a pen drive, so I guess I don’t really know for sure that the computer-printer connection works. I also used this time to borrow a set of hex wrenches to run back home and tighten our loose chairs. Then back to school.
My final (or only) class of the day was 9e. With a shortened period, and no article (the printer wasn’t working yet) and a plate of cornbread to be eaten, I decided just to start a conversation with the class. I actually had the class try to explain/teach me some more Hungarian. I am still working on the “o” and “u” sounds: all 8 of them.
As a follow-up to this I wanted to hear them speak their names again so I could listen closely with a more-informed ear and try to say every sound correctly. I apologized for it seeming like it was the first day of school again, but each student said their name clearly, then I repeated. For some it took me a couple tries to get all the sounds correct, but I really think they deserve to have their names spoken correctly. We’re talking very subtle differences, it’s not like I butcher names. but at least I can try to perfect the sounds.
Class was out almost one hour early, so I dropped my bag off at home, grabbed shopping bags and heading out. My inspirations were 1) a nice day 2) why not get some exercise? and 3) we needed a few extra groceries.
First stop: Match grocery store, to see if they have the zucchini I need. Nope. Eggplant is a substitute. Nope. 1 minute later, I was heading out the door.
Second stop: OBI (like Home Depot). I really want to replace our bathtub faucet; Kellie disagrees. At least I was going to replace the 2 most affordable parts, the showerhead and hose. I bought a 200 cm hose, which is much longer than our current one, for about $6 US. They had about 25 showerheads to choose from and I chose one that was about $7-8. As a followup to this, the showerhead seems to work great so far. It is a clear improvement. The hose, however, is not an improvement. It is apparently cheap plastic and broke in half as I was screwing it on the nozzle. I guess I should just eat the cost. Maybe I can use it in a Halloween costume???
Third stop: Tesco. Zucchini. Nope Eggplant. Nope. Battery charger. Too many to choose from, but yes ($22, including 4 high energy AA batteries). And don’t forget the two
impulse purchases, a fire alarm ($7) and a “gas detector” which I hope works like a carbon monoxide detector ($25!). I should point out that the fire alarm came with an expired battery, so you know it has been sitting on the store shelf, or in a storeroom, for a good 5 years. The gas detector looked equally “low in quality” but it plugs into the AC outlet. These were the only models they
sold. I didn’t take a photo of the boxes, but if you imagine going into a Home Depot, looking for a smoke detector, and seeing ones that are $50, $40, and $30, then there is the generic, “made in China” one that costs $10 that no one would ever buy…. that is the one model they have here.
As I walked toward the register through the dairy aisle, I saw this product, which clearly says “milk coffee.” But it didn’t taste like it. Closer inspection of the ingredients showed the top three as: milk, sugar, caramel, and far down the list, 1% of coffee. Tejeskave, you’re off my good list!
Fourth stop: Spar. I was just there yesterday, but of course today I walk in to find a large pile of fresh zucchini. Problem solved, and out I go.
I got home right after Kellie did, we rested a bit, I put away groceries then headed over to school. There was an event that has to do with the Compass (club?) which I don’t fully understand. But it involved painting, a Skype feed with the Denver art teacher who was here last year, the 9e girls doing some dance moves and the school band. This is the band that practices beneath our home, so I finally got to hear the music without it vibrating through the floor. The song in this video is from a classic Hungarian hard rock band called P. Mobil and is called “A zöld a bíbor és a fekete” (The Green, Purple, and Black). It’s my favorite of theirs.
Also, at Tesco, I stood in the checkout line and noticed a guy several feet away with what could only be a University of Portland Pilots sweatshirt. He had basketball shorts on, and seemed to not know the language too well. As I exited the store and was organizing my stuff, he came out,so I asked “Are you from Portland?” He did a double-take, because he wasn’t expecting to hear English. We chatted for a couple minutes. I told him about our plans over here, what we’re doing, etc. And he said he is playing basketball for Kaposvar’s top-division team, which I didn’t know anything about. We headed our separate ways, and by doing a quick online search, here he is. I recognize his name, and I definitely remember his brother, who played for Gonzaga: Here he is.
Finally, I got invited on a school trip which will take place in late April-early May. It is a bus trip to London and Paris (8 days) so I need to think about that. It is about $600 for the trip.