The smell that wouldn’t die…


Wednesday 23rd February 2005
Hello again!
Well, it’s all go at school at the moment, and we had our kinder festival on Saturday (all-singing, all-dancing, with hired costumes and everything). The kids were actually really great, but the teachers drove me mad!! I offered to come in early to help, and they told me to come in at about 2.30 (the show started at 5), so I rocked up, and they were all rushing about frantically yelling and getting all stressed out. I asked if I could help with anything, but was ignored, and so I basically sat in the corner for two hours!
I tried to help anyway a couple of times, but all the writing and costumes were labelled in Korean, and no one had the time or inclination to translate anything, so I was completely useless, and, after two hours I was quite irritated that they had asked me to come in so early when they obviously had no intention of giving me anything to do.
There was one minor incident that was quite funny – the kids were all crammed into the back room during the rehearsal, and the Korean teachers were all so stressed out they were completely unorganised – rather than delegate, something would go wrong and seven teachers will all rush off to fix it at the same time. I was mostly feeling bored and useless, so I had been sitting on the floor of the back room with a large pile of six-year olds saying ‘shhh’ and ‘quiet’ over and over until it beacame my mantra.
At one point I got up to pee, and obviously in the four minutes I was gone, all of the other teachers had disappeared to deal with a small crisis and left the kids completely unsupervised (this would be our entire kindergarten, which consists of about 24 kids aged 4 to 7). They do this a lot – I don’t think they understand the concept of constant supervision. Anyway, a scream inevitably echoes out from the small child-filled, unsupervised room, and so all seven teachers rush back into the closet-sized room muttering angry sounding Korean. There’s Henry, a six-year old form my class, lying flat on his back, blood pouring down his face, bawling his little heart out, and Tommy, another kid from my class, edging away with a guilty look all over his face, and a still-clenched fist covered in blood!
Hmm, whaddya think, Sherlock?
So, that was amusing.
We also had our kinder graduation today, so all the kids have gone and our kindergarten is officially closed! (that cuts my teaching hours down to four hours a day, and I don’t start till 3pm!! Can you believe they pay me almost a grand a month for that? I feel like I’m robbing them!) However, Julie informed me today that as of next week, I’m going to be in charge of a new adult class at 11am, so I don’t feel quite as guilty!
In other news, I wanted to tell you all a little bit about the smell in my flat. This may seem a bit strange, but the smell itself has developed so much in the four and a bit months that I’ve been here, it really deserves it’s own mention (if not it’s own website!!).
The flat itself has a deep permeating smell that has been here for over three years (according to Sarah, who lived here the year before Lisa). She blames Korean plumbing, and the smell itself does have an odour reminiscent of eau de blocked drain! However, I’ve poured every possible cleaning product down every drain I can find and the smell won’t budge! I sometimes wonder if something has crawled behind my cooker and died, but it’s impossible to get round there to look without causing some kind of scary gas explosion!!
However, the smell itself does grow on you, and I’ve pretty much gotten used to it.
……At least until a couple of days ago, when for some reason the smell completely evolved into a whole new dimension. It’s gotten stronger, and now resembles a kind of wet dog type aroma. Also it seems to have moved from the kitchen to the sofa area.
Now, I’ve been wracking my brains trying to remember if I recently pulled a dead dog out of a dumpster and hid it somewhere in my flat, but you know, I’m almost 24 now and my memory just isn’t what it used to be!
So, I’ll stop there, cos this email is huge, and mostly full of crap, just like me (ahh, do ya miss me?)
hope everyone’s chirpy and smelling better than my flat!!
love dead-dog-sofa Maya

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