Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Catching up!

At last I have my computer working with the internet at the hotel where I'm staying in Barlad, Romania. This is my third day of teaching. I do four classes a day, and it's not the same students each day, nor it is it even the ones I'm told in the afternoon will be there the next morning. Every day I'm a bit surprised about what class will be show up at what time. The kids know a lot of English and they do work hard. I'm enjoying myself very much. So here's a bit of catch up. I got to Bucharest about 2:30 on Saturday afternoon. Dan, one of the Romanian country managers was waiting for me. We left the airport and started our way north by car. About midway we stopped at McDonald's in a fairly large city.This McDonald's featured stick figures for signage -- even on the restroom doors. Took me a minute to figure that out.

We drove another two hours and got to Barlad about 7 in the evening. I checked into my room and then then went for a short walk in the nearby area to begin to get oriented to my location. By the time we arrived a howling wind had started which kept on for nearly the next two days.

On Sunday morning I met the principal of the school at which I would be reaching and worked with Mihaela, the other country manager here to start the process of team goals and team characteristics.
On that day already I began to  be introduced to some of the very fine restaurants in this city. I was in Romania two years ago and can't remember what I ate, other than that it was good. So I'm taking photos this time. Expect to see those later.

On Monday I began teaching at the school. Above is a photo of the student entrance to the school. I have four classes a day, not always the same four groups of students each day. Flexibility is definitely the key. Towards the end of each class I usually do some singing and we have done hokey-pokey in most classes. This afternoon I mentioned to the principal that every time he walks in the classroom -- which is actually the school library -- we are doing the hokey-pokey. I went on to explain we actually do some other things in the class. He asked if I would come back again in few months -- so I guess doing hokey-pokey is OK!

Last evening another four volunteers arrived. They are all working with children with disabilities at a nearby hospital. This group is two professors and two students. They got here about 9 PM last time after traveling from Ohio, and were off to the hospital at 10:00 this morning. They should return soon, and I bet they are going to tired with full of stories and experiences.

It feels very good to be back in central Europe. I almost felt homesick for Pecs last night at the train station. It made me think so much of my experiences in 2010. A reader below asked what I was doing here, so I hope this explains it!

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