We do not know what we want and yet we are responsible for what we are – that is the fact.
– Jean-Paul Sartre
A character flaw: I often fixate on the next thing, abandoning all investment in the present to invest in being antsy for time to pass. I downloaded some Buddhism podcasts for the airplanes so maybe I will learn to cultivate peace and right-thinking or whatever. But at the moment I am very antsy to arrive in Pittsburgh and go to Tom’s Diner for a midnight hamburger. Which is so Zen.
The Korean teachers seem to be turning on movies and then leaving their classes unattended, so if it weren’t for Mr. Jang’s willingness to sit with me through lunch, I would have been alone since they’d all eaten by the time I got there. He looked around at one point, as though looking for someone, and gave his yogurt drink to a student sitting behind us because she is from the same village as him. Kang something Dong.
Some of the students behind us turned around with interest as he gave me travel advice, mostly in Korean, most of which I didn’t understand, except for Sunrise Peak and something about islands with beautiful gardens. And then he became the insa police and yelled when the kids didn’t bow while walking past tables of their seniors.
He is like the least popular teacher amongst the students, and this is an example of why: He had left for the day but came back with a 3rd year and basically ripped her coat off of her (revealing where her skirt has gotten too small and bares a little hip); he reemed her out, patted the coat down for some reason, locked it in a cabinet, and re-left for the day while the girl cried to a homeroom teacher.
I am going to leave Korea with very little understanding of Korean school culture. Edit: I asked Mr. Kim and he explained it was because she didn’t have her uniform coat on under the overcoat.