bloom and grow forever

I'm sure the Baroness will be able to make things fine for you. If not, a year in Russia sure will.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

i have a disease with a definite article

I haven't had the energy to write lately; I got a nasty cold-sinus-thing which has left me groggy, grumpy, and desperate for someone or something else to teach my classes. It's the last day before the final written exam and also the day of the oral exam. All my beginners did wonderfully, but the hooligan intermediates are another story. While they kept me entertained with skits about Russian customs (mainly of the drinking variety: when they pulled out a vodka bottle I tasted it to make sure it was water), they didn't manage to squeeze in much of the required grammar, and their behavior in general was abominable. I was standing in front of the class holding the exam reading questions straight off the paper, and still they could not be bothered to stop hitting each other long enough to write down the formula for the word 'until' (when situation A happens, situation B ends.) And yes, I do feel bad for the one or two good students. Ah, well. I wonder if they'll pull it together over the weekend.

It was also course evaluation day. I snuck a peak. It's mostly good. Whew.

And two notable excursions away from the A.H. (thank goodness):

We visited an orphanage here in Vladimir and played with the kids. I spent an hour and a half swamped with adorable toddlers all calling me "Mommy." That part was really hard, but playing was great fun. We played Airplane (I pick you up and ask 'куда?'; you point and say 'туда!'); Visiting (walking from playground house to playground house); and Так (jumping up and down, laughing at each other.) We also policed them (lots of pushing, fighting for our attention) and and comforted them when they got trampled by the bigger, bossier kids. I got really dirty. I loved it.

On Sunday, I went to the early service (!) at a Wesleyan church near Lenin Square. It was also quite awesome: emotionally calming and a great listening exercise; a small place with good music and really friendly people. I knew most of the songs and understood a large majority of the sermon. Чудесно!