Friday, August 11, 2006

 

The Camp

Well, I rambled on enough in my last (first) blog post, so instead of rambling on again about the camp, Ill just post the best parts in point form......


HIGHLIGHTS

- Soccer with the kids.
Inc: A huuuuge, giant lob at the goal, which the goalkeeper (a korean teacher assistant luckily, or i woulda felt bad) wasnt able to stop. The kids all called me Ronadino for the next 3 days.
A huuuuge, giant lob that went straight for one of the camp directors, who was busy talkin on the phone, so didnt notice it coming and hitting him straight in the nut sack. 1 minute on the ground was a good indication he noticed once it had hit though!! Definately woulda won $500 and made funniest home video had someone recorded it (it may even have won!)
A v messy soccer game straight after 3 days of heavy rain. Cant believe they let us play!! I stuck to goalie coz all my clothes were dirty and there was no way to dry em if I washed em (they didnt even have a towel rack). I couldnt resist a big run up the right side though, and got v wet anyway. Puddles galore

- Drinking soju n beers with the other teachers every night once the kids hit the hay. Lotsa good convos, and an excellent game of charades was had on one night too.

- Choku!! Well, our own version of it anyway. Its basically volleyball using ur feet n head only (ie soccer-volleyball). We allowed the ball to bounce though, to make it more do-able. Perhaps the best sport Ive ever played!!! (only teachers played this)

- Surviving my 2 classes. Each teacher had 2 classes (12 in total), naturally I ended up with the lowest 2. 'My' class was all boys, but despite the fact they never listened and couldnt understand much, there werent any terrible kids (although there was a complete sook called Minh, who cried nearly every single day when things didnt go 100% his way). The other class had David & Joseph though, who would definately be on ritalin back home. Joseph was virtually unmanageable, and David was in a world of his own (but still insisted on hassling everyone else). During the 2nd week though, i discovered a much better way to try n handle the kids rather than just yell at em the whole time. Id just sit there with a "i can sit here all day if u like, i get payed either way" kinda attitude, and made kids do pushups if they kept talkin after I said "stop talking after 5...5, 4, 3, 2 1...". It was tough though, coz some of the kids kept volunteering saying "I wanna do pushups too!"

- The "Haunted House". Near the end of the camp, as a night activity, we got to scare the bejesus outta the students. Some teachers hung with the kids, whilst they got read ghost stories in the dark, and placed their hand in slimy food whilst blindfolded (ie whilst being told it was intestines, eyeballs etc). I was part of the monster crew though, and dressed as the Grim Reaper. The kids who survived the horror stories etc would walk along in a group (accompanied by a teacher) in the dark, and wed be waiting for em....wed then jump out, and try to get em to wet their pants - as youd expect, some kids were just too tough and cool to be scared. But others would start to cry, which I strangely got a kick out of (I considered it my revenge for having to deal with em behaving like monsters during the daytime).



The camp grounds were actually quite nice, but unfortunately they were in the middle of nowhere (near the centre of Korea). Sadly, my camera is real shit, so the photos of my class barely worked out.




here are some half-decent photos of the camp grounds etc though......




The serve-yourself Buffet counter where u can come back for as much KimChi as u like, breakfast lunch n dinner!! (The food was pretty good the first few days but got boring quickly - they seem to cook the same things again n again, with brekky being almost identical to dinner) As much as i like KimChi, it took me about 4 days to decide that I never want KimChi for breakfast ever again!!! Twice a day really is enough imho.



This is where u actually sit to eat. As teachers, were expected to sit with students (so they can practice English). In reality, the students generaly tried to avoid us & ate ridiculously quick (ie within 4 or 5 minutes) coz then they had free time




These 2 photos are the view from my balcony. Notice the 2 little gazebos in the 1st photo? Thats where us teachers would go after a hard day of teaching/yelling at kids, & talked politics/travel/made fun of our students, whilst drinking soju n beer.



Oh, and finally we have a picture of my actual room where I slept. There were 3 beds, but only 2 teachers per room. As u can see, the room is quite nice!! And about a gazillion times better than my previous English camps (despite having a gay American room-mate, called Eric). Actually, we got along really well, he didnt (noticeably) perve at me, and we had quite a few good deep n meaningfuls....The only problem was that he had the hots for another teacher called Ian, who seemed to have the hots for me!). That, and the fact that the "straw" pillow (called a straw pillow coz I think it was actually full of plastic drinking straws!) was way too big, and gave me a neck-ache when I used it at night.

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