Monday, August 09, 2010

I really was too tired to blog

I'm up after sleeping HARD, and I am still exhausted, the kind where I've spent every bit of physical and mental and emotional muscle I could muster in the span of two days, but after doing that every day for five weeks (and yesterday morning I got my period, and was bitten fiercely by mosquitoes, the worst batch of bites in days). There's still more to come, and this may be the hardest week left: I have lots of hanji left to make to send to my donors (WHAT WAS I THINKING when I came up w/these rewards?! What seemed like pie in Korea is like a 10-course meal here with nothing but a bunsen burner and a spatula), an article to write, and people to meet. I have things scheduled every single day until I leave. My inbox has gone rampant w/o daily weeding, which always makes me nervous.

But everything turned out well, I think. It's impossible for me to be objective so maybe someone else should make the call. Each of my students came and found me before leaving to thank me and I felt compelled, of course, b/c I am me, to give away things to each of them: hanji I made during the weekend that came out a little more intact than theirs, an ink stick, an artists' book, some hand-beaten dak, and so on. I got some very helpful suggestions to improve my teaching for the future. I had never thought of it until now: I learned what I'm teaching in Korea, in Korean. I'm trying to teach it in the USA, in English. A lot gets lost in translation, especially if I didn't know the English words to begin with. I explained one to a student yesterday: in jiseung, when my teacher explained how to know when to increase by adding cords, he said that "you feed the children rice when they're hungry."

I also came home to the sweetest card and a chocolate bar from my hosts to congratulate me. It's the same card I see every day at the desk I work on at home, and I had noticed it the first week I was here, b/c it is a quote that Ben would tell me often. They had given it to their youngest son when he graduated high school: "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined."

1 comment:

  1. Trust me, students (of any kind) do NOT voluntarily come to thank you unless they mean it. Think back :). So, I am making this call: success! CONGRATS - and not just on the class.

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