Banner design by Helena, portrait by Eva


Friday, February 23, 2007

Followed home by Students

As a foreign teacher, you're bound to be followed home by students, at some point or other. You're a major source of curiosity. What they know of you, they've learned from American TV shows like "Friends," or worse: reality programs.

I have 11 year old students: a girl and a boy, who rarely leave my side. They follow me to the bathroom, peek into my purse, hide under my desk, ask if every passing coworker is my boyfriend.

The little girl writes "I love Eva teacher" on her books. I have no authority over the boy, who stuck giant stickers over his eyes when I read a storybook, today.

After my last class, every day, they're on my heels walking alongside me as I leave the school. My apartment is on their way home.

Tonight the girl told me she was going to a birthday party in my building, and had invited Justin to join her. I was immediately skeptical but she insisted, deadpan expression, that she forgot the building code. She pulled a gift out of her bag. It was chilly and, on the slight possibility that she was being truthful, I let them in.

I said 'goodnight' on the second floor and they continued climbing. I heard their footsteps halt as I put my keys in the door. In an instant they had descended the stairs and were peeking at me from behind the staircase.

5 minutes later, I was on the phone, plugging in my rice cooker. I heard the doorbell ring. "No," I said firmly when I opened the door to their smiles. I'm sure they sensed I was more amused than anything. "You have to leave." And they did.

Their eyes were so big, filled with the Friday night excitement of stalking the English teacher.


g!ogger said...

Your blog shares much interesting information about Korean culture.


Eva Karrin McKinnon said...


thanks for the comment, glogger