The above title is not some kind of indication that things were going badly, but rather it’s the catch phrase of the now-former head teacher at my school. He and our assistant manager transferred to different schools in March, in turn giving us some co-workers/staff at the school to replace them. This is not including the first replacement assistant manager, actually a friend of mine who some of you know, since she came and went within just a few weeks. There were many reasons, but I think a bit part of it was the fact that Japanese staff at these schools work long hours, get paid terribly, and have pretty much the worst job. But ah well.
So it’s already Monday night, meaning that another weekend has come and gone. This past week was about as uneventful as can be, with the exception of the new co-workers starting. Luckily, they fit in well and things are going good. With the coming and going of teachers, as well as new kids classes starting to coincide with the new semester/year at real schools, my schedule has also been a bit changed. I teach a few extra classes a week, which overall isn’t that much of a pain but of course not too great. Of note are the two new kids classes I have to teach, both of which are middle elementary, meaning I think 3rd and 4th graders. Before this, the youngest kids I taught were 5th graders. Teaching the classes really aren’t that bad; in fact some of them are better/more fun than adult classes, and the kids are definitely better at making jokes. I also now teach Voyage, one of the lowest level classes at the school, which is a bit tough. When teaching people with English that low, you have to slow down to almost a ridiculous speed and also use a lot of gestures and stuff. Imagine Chris Tucker yelling at Jackie Chan in Rush Hour, only I’m the black guy in this situation.
On Saturday night after work we had a Farewell/Welcome party at an izakaya near Goi station, Yushun, which was my first experience of a big school party with a lot of students (over 50) there. It was overall a fun time and better than what I was expecting, even with the official ban on me using Japanese. I’ve gotten really good at hiding the fact that I understand Japanese in front of students. Some students were pretty tricky though and would ask me stuff quickly in Japanese and I would nod or answer in English, but they would know that I at least understood them. Part of this was done on purpose, because it got a pretty funny reaction. Also sometimes I would just tilt my head and be like “huh?” They’d love this because I would give a good few seconds pause before doing it. Sunday was another Sunday Open, which means that I got to spend my entire afternoon at work rather than doing what I would want to be doing on my day off (ie, sleeping). These Sundays Opens are definitely one of the most bogus parts of my job. If my calculations are correct, though, I shouldn’t really have to do these ever again. I wouldn’t be surprised if AEON tries to sneak attack me with one at some point during the summer, though.
Just a few more weeks until Golden Week, the national spring break! A full week to do absolutely nothing.