Last night, my wireless connection wasn’t working. Which is fine. I don’t pay for it. It can come and go as it pleases.
So that left me to read in bed, then toss and turn in bed, and then type notes into my phone that would make little sense in the morning. For example:
Easter die. Greenpuddles. Chicken bones. Wafts of bacon. Not great with children. Fried dumplings.
From these disjointed notes, I can only deduce that in my half asleep state I was thinking about the year I worked in a kindergarten classroom. I used to walk about a mile and a half each way through Chinatown to this school. There were always green puddles and chicken bones in the street, and there was one intersection that always smelled of bacon. I used to look forward to getting there (it meant my walk was nearly over).
I didn’t have too many responsibilities at school–hand out worksheets, collect homework, design creative bulletin boards. But the most important part of my job, by far, was typing up letters to go home with the kids. It was typing up a letter about an upcoming Easter activity that I made a dire mistake. I had to tell the parents to hard boil an egg at home for their kids that we would then be dyeing. Only, silly English major me, I wrote “dying.”
Which really isn’t a big deal. No one’s going to read “egg dying” and send their children to school with machetes or semi-automatics instead of tiny containers of dye. But I did not hear the end of it. The teacher and the teacher’s assistant (who spoke very little English and had typed “dying” into her English-Chinese electronic translator) basically told me that I had brought terrible luck to the classroom, that it would be an Easter miracle if everyone came out of the egg dyeing alive and well.
As for the fried dumplings, the teacher’s father made the most amazing ones. They were greasy and like nothing I’ve ever tasted.
Lastly, when you’re an English major, people always ask, “Oh, are you going to teach?” Which is a really frustrating question when you have absolutely no desire to teach and most of your childhood memories from the classroom are painful, traumatic ones. From now on I think I’ll just tell people the truth: “I’m incredibly awkward with large groups of children and tend to drink more alcohol than usual when I’m around them.” I used to tell people that I was considering teaching on the college level after I got my Master’s and my Ph.D, but now that I’m about two skips and a jump from becoming a vagrant living off of the chicken bones and questionable puddles of Chinatown…we’ll see.