Thursday, January 29, 2009

Ehes vagyok

So I am hungry, not hungary, hungry. Lunches here certainly keep me entertained, mostly trying to figure out what they are. Most days I enjoy them enough, especially when I get potatoes, but today was different. I am still not sure what I just consumed a heaping plate full of. I know it was pasta but other than that I am lost. I am unable to decipher it by taste either because Hungarians have a fascination for mixing sweet with everything. All I know is that I ate something I would really prefer to not have again and am sad I will miss my mashed potatoes tomorrow.

I guess I better get over my concern over food I don't know before the pig killing. Who knows what I will be fed that day. My question is how many parts of a pig can Hungarians make into food?

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Since nothing too exciting happened today I am going to write about what will be happening soon. Going to pilates has brought me an English student , actually two of them, who I will be attempting to teach English to on Kedd. This is going to be very interesting for me. I can't count the number of people that I told that when I grow up, I will not become a teacher. Now, here I am, teaching in Hungary!

Olga and Piroska (same as Little Red Riding Hood in Hungarian), that is what everyone calls her so I am assuming it is her name, will hopefully be able to speak basic English by the end of this year. I am also going to be working with Andi on Szerda reggelt. She wants to keeps developing her English at the same time she is trying to get her sister Dora to work more in school. Last semester she got a 2, NOT GOOD!

It really is exciting stuff. Plus she invited me to a pig killing! I am so excited that I will actually get to see one!

That is it for now.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

I Like...

Today we started the topic on food. The activity for the kids was to put a red heart next to the picture of the food they like. They had to then tell the class "I like spaghetti/cheese/corn flakes/milk/cake." Having free time at the end of day I wanted to continue with "I like.../I don't like..." It was going well using the pictures of the princess, sheriff and clown and describing what they like, until when I was asking what they sheriff liked and the only thing my students would say was "Tara!" I kept telling them that I was not a card and could not be put on the board, but they continued on...and on... the sheriff ended only not liking things, and I guess liking me...

I started a class with a large group of fifth year students who want to learn more English. I decided that a good way to introduce themselves would be to tell me things they like and things they don't like. This was not very easy. Many of them have the vocabulary but do not want to say it out loud. In the end Many of the students ended up not liking other students and it appears I have two very distinct groups of girls, who don't like each other at all.

This is going to be an interesting year!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Tell me why...

"...I don’t like Mondays
Tell me why
I don’t like Mondays
Tell me why
I don’t like Mondays
I wanna shoo-oo-oo-oo-oo-oot the whole day down"

Usually I am singing this. Mostly because I have to start at 8 am, most times after a long travel day on Sunday. Today was different. I was happy because I got home early enough to get things done. I had made it to the Tesco which was a very exciting experience. All in all I was ready for school on Monday morning

One of my proudest accomplishments at this moment is my creation of the map corner. I have been searching for a map of the world, but have yet to find one. The Tesco, however, had the next best things, a map of Hungary and Europe as well as push pins to mark the places I have been so far. After completing it I realize that there is far too much left to see!

I love when I am in the class with Kata, the ostaly fonok for my class. We almost always do some sort of craft. The kids have a book for technical skills so today we were making yarn pictures. Believe me when I say this: It is much harder to create things when when the yarn and glue refuse to work together!
Anyway, here is my creation. Any guesses as to what it is?

The only bad thing that happened today was that due to the change of schedule last week, our gym class was taken by an older class and so we have to go for a walk. I really like going for walks, but there is only so much to see in town. And there is not that much.

Happy Australia Day, Happy Chinese New year and Happy Monday!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

How to go to the ball....

The following are easy to follow instructions on the proper way to prepare for a Hungarian ball.

Step 1. Buy a ticket - Very important that this is done well in advance or you will not have a seat and be included in the party.

Step 2. Find a dress - This is one of the most important preparations. Be sure to give yourself ample time to find one, but it can be done until a few hours before the ball. A key requirement to fitting in is finding a dress that would be called lingerie in North America.

Do be weary of over prepping your hair. Natural is always better.

Step 3. Buy your own wine - You know parties have wine that is way to expensive so it is key to cheap wine that can be consumed with dinner. Be sure to buy champagne to make samosas for the pre-ball preparations (VERY IMPORTANT!)

Step 4. Enter the party on time. If the invitation says 7 o clock, show up at 7.

Step 5. Be seated with the best companions ever. Be warned that everyone has brought their own alcohol. Lemon Vodka and flavoured rum are key to a good night. Champagne will also be served throughout the night. As with the rest of Hungary, when your glass is emptied, it will be refilled, with various sorts of alcohol, so drink up!

Step 6. Eat everything that is on your plate. Once again, remember that it is Hungary so you will be served ample amounts, but it is also a ball and so you need the energy for dancing and to soak up all the alcohol you are drinking.

Step 7. Be sure to buy raffle tickets. 10 is the minimum. Remember, you are supporting a school! Win at least 2 prizes from the raffle, 4 or 5 is best, but you need something to trade for the prize you really wanted. FYI 69 does some in handy sometimes...

Step 8. In between courses, hit the dance floor. The music is Hungarian, but it is still cool to dance in a giant circle with everyone making fools of themselves.

Step 9. Dance the night away, only after having a midnight snack of toltott kaposzta!

If you follow these directions you will be on your way to having the best time at a Hungarian ball.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The bank.

I went to the bank today with Ili to see if I could get things figured out with the money and everything. Quick summary:

-There is no record of the 15,000 ft that mysteriously left my account...hmmm
-I have yet to receive a bank statement about my monthly transactions. The bank swears they have been sent. Off to the post office to see where my mail is going.
-I will now get an SMS every time money goes into or out of my account.
-I had to create a password for something I don't even know about.

Yay for money and SMS msgs...
Boo for odd transactions...

That is all for now!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Yay!...more work!

...who would have ever though I would be happy to get more work?

This week we were supposed to receive new schedules. Not too sure why because it is an elementary school, but I thought things might get switched up a little which it great. On Monday I was told that in fact, my schedule would remains the same and the only difference would be that I would work with a few students from 7a once a week to prepare them for their basic English exam. Today I walked in and was given a new schedule. Not too much had changed, but I am working more which is good. I now have 17 lessons as opposed to the 14 I had last week. My days are also split between morning days and afternoon days.

Today was my first encounter with the new students I am working with from 7a. I had met them before but am happy that I am now working with them one on one. It will take a while for us to fully understand what we expect of each other, but I think we have a good beginning.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

What's in a name?

Today in Hungarian class, we made yarn people. The kids are learning parts of the body (which helps me too) at the same time in two languages. It is quite interesting, though very hard to keep their attention. I just thought I would post a picture of my doll, still trying to think of a name.

The kids in both 1a and 1b like to tell me "Ott a baba!" (there a baby) while pointing to my stomach. I usually turn this back around on them by calling them my babies, but today I am not sure why I changed things up. Szabina started with the "Ott a baba!" with this I decided her name would change to Baba. Fanni was the next to make a weird comment. She started calling out Boszorkany (witch), so she became that. It does fit with her behaviour which makes it quite appropriate. Balint was next. He was determined to be a bohoc (clown) mainly because all the time he is singing and dancing around, just moving because he can't stay still. With input from the rest of the class, Nandi was determined to be szellem (ghost) which suits him but I did feel bad. It is like he is not there sometimes even though he is one of the smarter kids. Mark was very easy to determine. Krampusz (demon). No explanation necessary. Dezi and Zsofia were much harder. Dezi became angyal (angel) because she always behaves and would look like an angel if she dressed in white. Zsofia was said to bbe a kirany (princess) though she herself wanted to be a witch. Hmmm, that is odd.

So the class list is now as follows (at least in my own head)

It was a very interesting day!

Monday, January 19, 2009

I heart BorosCola

This past weekend I went into Budapest to meet the newbie teachers. I left school before dessert lunch (boo-urns) so I could make it into Budapest by the time everyone was leaving for the goodbye dinner. Everyone seems really nice, and though I didn't get a chance to talk to them very much I did learn a little about most of them.

I stayed with Hanna Friday night in her very adorable apartment and I got up relatively early in order to meet up with Briggi and Jamie and continue our travels to Tata. The trains from Deli station are gorgeous compared to the my trains out here and so I became very jealous during the one hour ride.

We made it to Tata and took the bus to Carla's apartment, a pepto-bismal pink and pale yellow creation. After eating lunch we continued on to take a tour of the town, walk around the frozen lake and eventually have dinner at the pirate bar, Fregatt's.

We headed back to Carla's to consume some boros cola and play a very interesting version of president before heading out to the club.

Tata is a very interesting place at night. The club was packed with people of all sorts, making it quite an interesting experience. A few of us were grabbed on the rear, and I also got the privilege of being kissed on the shoulder by an incredibly drunk man who was being pushed around by all the groups who were dancing. All in all, I still love Boros cola, always will.

Sunday was travel day, as per usual, and because I was further from home than usual, I had to leave quite early. I finally got home just in time to basically get ready for bed and pass out. And that is how I spent my weekend. Only to be asked by the teachers repeatedly where I went, saying Tata each time and on the fifth time finally seeing comprehension cross their face.

I heart Boros Cola
I heart Hungary
I heart home in Mariapocs

The only picture I have of the weekends adventure. Leaving Briggi at Stadianok while I started my long journey home on the bus!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Candy, it just isn't the same...

As I was instructed, I am writing today, and because nothing super exciting happened I am going to write about one of my favourite things...CANDIES!!!

So I was eating smarties a while back and noticed that they are just not the same as home, colour and taste (not a good thing.)

Have a look for yourself...I know the picture is not great but you get the idea...
(North American smarties are along the top...and their Hungarian counterparts are reflected below)

This is the other thing I noticed today. I have been getting bags of small candies that I can eat randomly and just noticed today a flavour I never would have expected...

I am not sure if I want to try it or not. I think it would taste add, and who knows if there is any actual alcohol in it!
So this candy flavour is actually champagne flavoured...I also discovered that there were two other flavours I would not normally expect...Milk and Cactus (no spikes included)

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Back to work...

It has been an interesting week back so far. I had 3 full days home before I had to think about school again which was great, but as soon as I walked through the door on Monday morning I felt at home again. I missed my kids so much it was great to see them again. Add in the snow that fell the two days before school returned, it was a happy day. The kids were beyond excited, and as soon as I walked into the class I saw why. The tables at the back of the classroom was piled high with toys. The kids could barely focus and kept turning around to stare at the toys. Walking around after school I was amazed and delighted to see that people were cleaning off their driveways. This is one things I do not miss, but I was delighted mainly because people were cleaning the snow off using brooms. This really put a smile on my face and I will have to remember to bring my camera next time it snows so I can document this praactice.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Christmas break...

I will write more later but just going to post some pictures for now...