Second Week of Teaching

Published: March 24th 2013
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It’s Friday morning and we’re on our way to Prague. I haven’t had time to blog this week, but I’m ok with that. Unfortunately, Hradec was hit with snow that started on Monday morning and continued through Tuesday night. This week, I felt blissfully lost for most of the week. I took the wrong bus on Tuesday morning and was late for my meeting with Pavla. To make matters worse, I walked out of the apartment without my phone, so I couldn’t text her to let her know I would be late. I also forgot about a few things I was supposed to have done this week (lesson preparation) and felt pretty “loserish” about it. I feel like I made up for it with a few great lessons. Jayna and Katka were really supportive this week and told me that I did well, which is what really matters right now. I whole-heartedly appreciate their warmness and kindness. I also feel blessed that they allow Ava to attend the lessons. She was a mixture of naughty and nice while I taught this week. I’ll definitely be having talks with her on the way to the school each day next week to reinforce that she cannot shout out the answers before the other students answer and that she cannot cry when I tell her to be quiet because that is disruptive. Other than that, she was quite the little soldier this week and I am proud of her. All the kids loved her and followed her around like she was a celebrity. It’s always great to see people being kind to Ava. It softens your heart and brings a smile to my face in only a way a mother can understand.

I was really happy when I saw the sun shining on Wednesday morning. After I was finished teaching, Ava and I went to get my bus pass. The first time I went to get my student bus pass, I was told I’m too old to be a student and would have to buy a 3 months pass instead. Of course, it wasn’t the lady behind the desk who told me that I couldn’t get a student card, but another lady in line. When I realized that things weren’t going smoothly, I turned around and desperately asked if anyone in line could speak English. Thankfully, a nice lady volunteered her translation services and arranged for my 3-month card. I was told to come back the following week. So, Ava and I came back on this sunny Wednesday to pick up my card. Only, I forgot to bring my paperwork (any students from EMU planning to come here should remember to bring their paperwork). Since I knew the lady didn’t speak English and wouldn’t give me my card even after I handed her 3 pieces of identification and pantomimed that I gave her my form and she should give me my card, I decided to look for reinforcements. I went over to another desk on the other side of the office where a young man was working. He said that he new English and called someone over to watch his desk while he helped me. Then, he explained the situation to the woman, who found my card, took my money, and gave me the card with my receipt. The nice guy explained that I should only scan my card on the weekends or very late at night when the driver only opens the door in the front of the bus. However, I need to keep the card on me whenever I use the bus. There are people who get on the buses who check to make sure everyone has a valid card or has purchased a ticket when they got on the bus. I’ve only had my ticket checked once during the two weeks I’ve been here, but apparently there is a significant financial penalty if you are caught without paying. Having the card is nice because I don’t have to buy a ticket every time I get on the bus now. I just get on and sit down.

Another advantage is that the bus is short walk away from the town square. Since it was such a nice day, Ava and I walked into the town square, chatting along the way. It’s been a few days since I’ve had time to really enjoy hanging out with my little munchkin and I had been missing her. We stopped at a bakery and I had a sandwich while Ava had a small dessert. I forgot to take my camera, so I don’t have any photos of this L. Then, we stopped at a little booth by the river and order from French fries. We ate them in the sunshine while we watched the ducks and swans swimming up and down the river. It was a nice time together, but Ava was anxious to check on her mema (grandma), and we reached home just before dark.

Yesterday, mom and I both did laundry, which caused some major confusion at the front desk. I want to blog about doing the laundry, but I want to include some photos and video to really give you the full effect. It’s one of my goals for next week. For now, know that despite the small frustrations, I fall more in love with the Czech every day!


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