Sunday, September 28, 2008

Wilted, slightly revived


This last cycle of teaching was difficult. It's not always fun to be a representative of my country and translator of its politics and culture to my ESL students. I get tired and start imagining that I'm an old Australian man living in the Marquesas, or maybe the captain of a freight ship. I know. Being the captain of a freight ship would probably suck, but never mind, I like port cities.

If I were moderately independently wealthy, today's fantasy involves Croatia. If I were just plain independently wealthy, today's fantasy would be about Barcelona.

And, dear friends, please don't feel the need to caution me with well meaning, paternal advice about recklessly buying international real estate. To be reckless with real estate, I'd have to have the funds to do it. Rest assured, I don't. Maybe I'll buy a fancy perfume sample in my continued quest to find the perfect citrus scent, or a whole watermelon instead of half a watermelon.

Maybe I will reread all of Laura Riding's Progress of Stories, or something from the pile of new books on my desk--I think the one on the top is from Tarpaulin Sky Press. It better be good.
Lookout.

4 comments:

pop quiz kid said...

On an unrelated note, I just read that the Hula Hoop turns 50 this year. How will you celebrate?

K. Lorraine Graham said...

Thank you for letting me know about this important anniversary. I am embarrassed to admit that I was unaware of it. I'm not sure how I should celebrate, but it will certainly be cheesy.

kevin.thurston said...

It's not always fun to be a representative of my country and translator of its politics and culture to my ESL students.

there is definitely something to that. my students ask me some very pointed questions sometimes--often because they don't have the vocabulary to make them more nuanced.

then, sometimes in a bar, the staff and patrons will continue to ask me questions.

there has even been english-speaker on english-speaker qs. a british friend of mine was quite surprised to find out that not all americans agree with our regime. mass media and the representations of 'all-is-complacent' on the home front really do produce an international opinion--even in the 'educated' or 'smart'. it is quite amazing.

K. Lorraine Graham said...

Hi Kevin,

I remember having some of the same frustrations when living overseas. I was studying in China when the US bombed the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, and after a while I just started telling everyone I was from Finland.