flu fear and fun fear

Okay, time for a proper blog post, and I’m doing this while at home and Jon is off making curry at ‘the girl’s’ AND I have banned myself from the PS3. I am so easily distracted.

The temperature has dropped. Oh god it’s dropped. Google Weather tells me that it’s -2˚c in Seoul but as this is Pyeongnae, which resides in a valley, it must be lower than that here. That is ludicrous isn’t it? It’s not even really winter yet and it dare goes that low. When I arrived it was all warmish Autumnal weather and Jon tells me that three weeks before that it was still quite hot. Bloody seasons.

As I am still suffering the long tail-end of a cold (remember?) so I am really feeling the cold air in my poor lungs – outside I wrap up like a toad-in-the-hole. Taxi driver pulled up next to me just now and asked me where some apartment-block somewhere was, when I turned around and looked confused through my three layers, he laughed and drove off.

Luckily I don’t (at least, I’m pretty sure I don’t) have swine flu. Sorry to bring this up again, people of England – people who are genuinely sick of hearing about it, but it has just reached Korea. That is, it has just been recognised as a problem and is being over-dealt with. Ignore it or go over-board, that is my experience of Korean problem solving. Anyway, our hagwon is not only the only hagwon not to have closed for any time at all, but the only educational institute of any kind not to have closed in our district. This has resulted in roughly half the regular attendance today. Some kids are taking one or more whole months out, oh how their English will suffer. It is possible attendance will drop further once the parents find out that one of our kids actually has the pig flu and that their English teacher was all coughs and sniffles today. On the up-side, there is little more amusing about all this than their little face masks, apart from the way that our director is dealing with this. (see the link further down the page)

who *wouldn't* want a Disney facemask?

Julia isn't the only kid by the way, but the only one I could catch wearing one of these on camera

You will recall that it was Halloween this weekend just gone. This is a new, often brand-new, concept to Koreans but they have joined in with gusto. Our hagwon really went all out – banners all over the place, decorators hired in, costumes provided for us, parents invited – then all in, as all of it was cancelled due to the aforementioned dreaded Swine Flu. I won’t go over the utter shambles because no-one could cover that better than Jon, here. Anyway, as it stood, we had a Halloween themed day, which would have been great if my cough medicine didn’t make me drowsy and disinterested. Like my graduation pictures, I may be smiling but a sick fog hangs in my eyes.

check out Spiderman, that kid is away with the fairies.

our director Rose, me and Jon are at the back. Melon class are at the front

I mentioned this in my twitter, so sorry for the over-lap, but as any event dictates – we get gifts from the parents via the children. In one case I got this along with a bag of Halloween cookies and sweets (now devoured):

+1 if you can read the Hangul

it says (in phonetic hangul) Happy Halloween from Ey-Gi

I am always amused when spend a little while reading each syllable, only to be left with a contorted English word. As it goes, this is a pretty accurate transcription.

The proper Halloween party was with our little group of foreigners and token Korean Jenny-teacher (a.k.a “one-drink Jenny”), out in Hongdae for a bloody good knees-up. Jon and I dressed as splendid Englishmen. Shortly after we were joined by girls dressed as an elephant, a panda, a pirate and Tinkerbell. Here are some pictures, you can find albums full here and here.

cold, dead fog


on the bus - rocking a Carlsburg and a blank expression

the locals hated us

we drew some glances

Girls on the metro. Notice how embarrassed Jenny looks with her can of Corona

this was how the victorians actually transported livestock

Waiting at the metro are two gentlemen and... a panda?

nice... udders... mate

love Hongdae

There was also a jig.


About Dave
I used to teach English in Korea. I used to write in this blog reasonably regularly for a fair while, take a read why not?

2 Responses to flu fear and fun fear

  1. cath parry says:

    This is fab i love 2 brits and a panda you are all very brave well done,

  2. Pingback: Hongdae Photo Day « Bristol to Seoul

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