Obviously, I am well behind in getting this posted, my stomach still full of turkey as I write this. However, the I shall try to get caught up and up to date very soon. The new website seems to be working to my advantage in that way.
Jessica and I managed to get the school fairly well decorated considering the schools very limited budget and complete lack of knowledge concerning what Americans do for Halloween. Korean logic blows my mind sometimes, or maybe the people I work with are just none too smart. The verdict is still out. We had been telling our students for the entire month of October that they would get to play “Bobbing for Apples” on Halloween. However, to both the teachers and the students utter disappointment my supervisor Mina told us that we could not play due to fears about swine flue. A bummer but understandable I thought. Until her suggested substitute game was “Bobbing for Candy From a Bowl Full of Flour.” Yeah, thats much better. Jessica and I don’t have much respect for mina in general and this incident did little to alter that perception.
When I first arrived at school think I gave our gentle cleaning lady a heart attack. I realized that I may have gone overboard with the fake blood but Koreans are really just completely confused by our Halloween holiday and have no similar time for dress up. I graciously accepting Jessica’s offer for a ride in her car that morning from our apartment block to the school as I would have made quite a spectacle walking by all the construction workers smoking their hourly cigarettes dresses as I was.
I was super exited to see that many of the students had actually dressed up for the event with only my constant badgering during class time as incentive. It was also impressive to see some of their creative outfits since there are virtually no costume shops in Korean with the exception of the school supply shops that sell basic outfits for use in school plays and the like. One of which is where I procured my bad-ass-zombie-pirate motif. Nearly the entire month of October was spent teaching the students words like Zombie, Mummy, and Jack-O-Lantern so as to give them some costume ideas.
I had the idea to set up each of the classrooms as if they were peoples house and stage a mock trick-or-treat for the students. I would hide, before any of the students had seen me in costume, in the last classroom in the row of five. When the students knocked on my door, it would merely swing open to reveal a chair with a big bowl of candy on top of it within the darkened room. Shortly after entering I would spring out from behind my covered hiding spot and scream as loudly as possible. I am really surprised that I only had one kid start crying. At least I got one!
You may have also notice the awesome mutton chops that I am sporting in these pictures which deserves an explanation. On campuses across the US we have a little tradition in certain circles called March Mustache Madness. The deal is that you start growing in February and come March first you go down to a stache. Apparently there is a similair tradition in Britain but its called Movember, or No-Shave-November. The residents of Samgye-dong, being Me, Millad, Jake, and John Henery, all took part. Jake and John Henery barely able to grow their patchy mustaches I was the talk of the town for a while because it looked like I was the only one actually participating. I cant believe that my director didn’t order me to shave it off! We even had a teacher parents meeting with that thing on my face. Good times.