Monday, June 20, 2011

Be a Sport!

Here's the detailed account of this years first Teacher's Sports Day!!!  Feel the saccharine tone in my voice?  That's because I was faking my sweet interest, and poorly at that.

On Friday the students left after fourth period, about 10:30 in the morning.  The teachers were to be finished about noon so that we could have TEACHERS SPORTS DAY!!! Da dada daaaaa!! It was a team building exercise involving ALL the teachers at JIKS.  Now even though the elementary, middle and high schools are all on the same campus, rarely the twain shall meet. I know a lot of the names of the secondary teachers form mentions about the office.  I've seen quite a few of them walking in or out of school but I think I'd only spoken to about two of them since I started last August.  This sports day was also going to include all the Korean teachers from the different schools AND the administrative office.  It had all the making of a disaster.

This was the notice we got about the days events:
* Sports Day Schedule

          Time                         Events   
  1      12:00 ~ 12:20          Warm up   
  2      12:20 ~ 12:40          Dodgeball( Female) (5분씩, 3Set)    
  3      12:40 ~ 13:40          Volleyball (Female+ Male, 3Set)   
  4      13:40 ~ 14:00          Volleyball for friendship (KT+Native, 1Set)   
  5      14:00 ~ 14:30          Table tennis ( F + M, 1Set)   
  6      14:30 ~ 15:00          Badminton (Male, Male + Female)   
  7      15:00 ~ 16:30          Dinner( Cafeteria)   

  1. Please, go to the gym by 11:50.
 2.Winners( team) will get the vouchers for leaving early and Karaoke Voucher( equivalent to 1,000,000).
   Go! Go!

I went into it in a foul mood.  Normally we'd get to leave early that Friday since the kids had testing.  I'd thrown a week long fit about the female only dodgeball (what, no bikini mud wrestling?). The other three sports to be included were volleyball, table tennis (henceforth to be referred to as ping pong :P ) and badminton.  I can understand volleyball.  It's a team sport and they wanted teams of nine.  I've been in Asia a year and a half, but I still can't get the fascination with the faux sports of badminton and ping pong.

It kicked off with toe touchy warm up to a pop 80's song.  Then lots of standing around waiting.  The schedule was almost immediately scrambled in favor of starting with volleyball for friendship. Next came something unexpected.  I started out in the Bule vs Korean volleyball match and had a good time.  I stayed in for part of the elementary vs secondary matches.  It was fun.   I was then completely mind boggled by the dodgeball.  I may try to use diagrams to explain that soon.  When the dodgeball wrapped up and the "non-sports" kicked in, I perked up with a cold Bintang.  I was starving when we entered the gym so I had some mildly sweet brown rice balls with raisins which were much nicer than I know they sound, and some watermelon. I talked with three guys from the secondary school and met two others.  It was great.

About 2/3 of the bule lot trouped up to the canteen/cafeteria for food.  They had quite the spread set out for us.  We all agreed it was better than the last school meal out at a Korean restaurant.  One big benefit of working at a Korean school is that they eat pork.  And the roast pork was excellent.  Add in veggies, life giving kimchi, noodles, etc, etc and it was a meal for a king.  There were beers around and bottle of soju (think Korean tequila) a plenty. By the time I begged off at 4:30, I had a touch of a beer buzz and a full belly. The conversation was entertaining for the most part and the day wrapped up well.

The last good news of the day?  The elementary school won Sports Day.  We earned one "early leave day" free pass for the staff, and we used it yesterday!  I'm often surprised here at JIKS, but to have a positive surprise hit me double.

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