When I first started at my Tuesday school, I would usually just walk down the main road to get to the station. It wasn’t rare to run into some of my students while I was walking. However, one day I ran into a couple of girls in 5-3 and they were psyched to see me. I honestly didn’t recognize them because we have little interaction due to my English teacher. They insisted on walking with me so we chatted for a bit until it was time for me to walk on the main road. The two girls stopped, looking confused.
“Where are you going?”
“Oh, I’m heading to the station.”
Girl 1: “Hmm, okay then. Well, let’s get going home then.”
Girl 2: “But I want to keep talking to Diego-sensei!”
G1: “Well…what should we do?”
G2: “Hm….oh I got it. Diego, you can still get to the station if you cross the bridge with us.”
G1: “Yeah. It’s definitely the long way over there but you can still get there if you follow us.”
Diego: “Sure, why not?”
So I followed these girls and crossed the bridge, only to get a nice view of the mountains as well as some scenery. I took a picture of the sunset that day, happy to have found a nice path to the station:
It might be the long way around, but it’s definitely more scenic. I was also able to talk to my students a bit longer we finally reached their homes. While I thought this was going to be a one-shot thing, it was far from it. One day, I was beginning to walk home until I felt someone jump on my backpack. When I turned around, it turned out to be it was the two girls from 5-3. “Let’s go home!” they yelled. I eventually learned their names: Nami and Mana. Ever since, I interact with them more in class. They definitely make that class and the walk home more fun.
It doesn’t end there though. I’ve been recently visiting my classrooms in between classes because like I mentioned in an earlier post, this is the only time I can really interact with my kids at my Tuesday school. I’ve noticed Nami and Mana playing cards with some other girls. Bored, I went in and they were basically screaming at my arrival. I watched them play for a bit until I noticed that they were playing “Presidents and Assholes” except without the card exchange rule. Before I knew it, I was playing with them in a hurry to try to finish the game before the bell rung. Simply by visiting this classroom that day, I have acquired two more people in my walk home. It’s funny because it looks more like an entourage and I’m sure it looks kinda strange watching some young foreign dude walking with a bunch of 11 year old girls in the afternoon. Nowadays, I will be walking down the hallways after school and I will usually get stopped by them with the question “When are you going home??” Now whenever I am leaving the building, I will see them waving and yelling my name. Needless to say, I like my walk homes on Tuesdays.
This Tuesday I was hearing Mana complain over the fact that I’m only used for pronunciation in class and that she hates English because of my English teacher. This made me smile because I’m glad that someone else feels the same way and that even though I’m only used as a tape recorder in that class, my presence is appreciated. They asked if I could teach them by myself one day. Boy would my English teacher get in a fit if she heard that. I try not to talk about her in front of them because I don’t want any gossip running around. It is funny though that they catch on to certain things like her strange pronunciations of certain words.
This week I played cards with them in 5-3 but I was also pulled in 5-5 during recess time. Usually, everyone is outside playing but because it was raining, we all had to stay inside. I was surprised to see that everyone had moved their desks to the side and put their chairs in a circle. Anyone would know that they were going to play Fruits Basket. I honestly thought the kids were too old to play this game at this point but I guess not. Anyways, they wave me down and before I know it, I’m sitting in a chair, trying to pay attention to what they’re saying. Even though I probably messed up a couple of times, I did understand 80% of what they were saying. I ended being in the middle like three times. I guess after you get caught in the middle three times, everyone does a little chant about you and then instruct you to do something as a “punishment” game. I had no idea what my punishment was so I opted to dance like a moron like most kids were doing. They really got a kick out of it. With the walk homes and the silly interactions I have with some classmates, Tuesdays can be a lot of fun. This week was no exception.