From an email about my mess-up at school. Near the end was this: (I think this was in reference to my melt-down at the restaurant last week?)
I want you feel happy to work here and work with us.
I wanted you to help you in many ways, but I couldn’t afford to do that.
I feel stressful with a lot of work and my students.
In case I can’t help you, using a Englsh-korean dictionary can be helpful.
OK. So I’m left without any attempt at socializing because
but I couldn’t afford to do that
See? Being kind to foreigners is a financial burden! (knocking head against wall) and the sympathy I get for not being able to communicate is
ADDED: hmm. maybe she was referring to time and not money…
In case I can’t help you, using a Englsh-korean dictionary can be helpful
Um,…If there wasn’t a dictionary in my cell phone, I’d have killed myself by now…
This is actually (sigh) a very supportive (sigh) note. But a lot of times our conversations feel like I am getting a lashing.
For example, when I ask a question and am anticipating some advice, I hear, “You better . . .” I always have to check myself and remind myself that this Korean obviously doesn’t know that these words begin an admonishment or come as an order, and the intonation sounds like an admonishment or an order, even though I know that the intent was (hopefully) kind. I tell the students that English sounds harsh, and that they can soften the language by acting and putting their emotions into their words and to soften their tone, but the adults aren’t able to do this…
Some days I’m just all bloodied and black and blue, but you have to suck it up and be thankful that you heard someone speak a word you recognized.
And I’m being asked for hand-outs again. Immersion shouldn’t be about reading freaking hand-outs. These kids don’t need more hand-outs, which will just end up in the recycling bin anyway. These kids need to hear a native speaker saying, “Oh, I would try doing this or that.” Instead of, “You Better . . .”