Saturday, November 15, 2008

Busy Day for a Sick Girl

I spent the week trying to pretend that I wasn't getting sick again, but by Friday, there was no hiding it. Whatever I had before is back, and it is just as awful as it was the last time around.

Today I needed to teach a demonstration class at school for prospective kindergartners. I did a short lesson in which I taught the seven kids how to introduce themselves and the names of five colors (red, yellow, blue, green, and orange). We then made alligator puppets. I concluded by teaching them the "Alligator Song" (it's a song that I made up one day when my youngest class wouldn't sit still and was driving me mad). The kids all seemed to have a good time, so hopefully Cate will have a nice batch of new kindies new year (I'll be gone when the new class starts).

After the demonstration class, Cate took me out for lunch. While we were eating, I mentioned that I needed to get my hair trimmed (the last trim was back in the US - yikes!) and asked if she could write out some instructions for me in Hanguel. Cate suggested that she just take me to a hair place and explain in person what I wanted. Since neither of us had plans today, she offered to take me right after lunch. So, joined by Cate's daughter Rosie, we headed off to the hair salon as soon as we finished our delicious lunch.

On the way there, we got to discussing hair styles...which led to Cate suggesting that I should get a perm today. I've been thinking about getting another one for awhile, since I loved having curls, but was going to wait until I got back to the US. However, as is the case with most services, it is much cheaper to get a perm in Korea.

The women (there were two working on me) who styled my hair were geniuses. They shampooed it (with a nice head massage), trimmed it, re-layered it, thinned it a bit (it needed it, actually), and then permed it. Then they showed me how to style it. They even brought me a delicious cafe mocha while I was sitting with the chemicals and rods in my hair. I absolutely love my new style - and I only paid 60,000 won!!! Right now, that's about $42. Cate, being the unbelievably gracious person that she is, stayed with me the entire time, as did Rosie, who kept me entertained (she's a chatterbox). Aside from being sick, I had a great day!

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"Passage—immediate passage! the blood burns in my veins! Away, O soul! hoist instantly the anchor!
Cut the hawsers—haul out—shake out every sail!
Have we not stood here like trees in the ground long enough?
Have we not grovell’d here long enough, eating and drinking like mere brutes?
Have we not darken’d and dazed ourselves with books long enough?

Sail forth! steer for the deep waters only!
Reckless, O soul, exploring, I with thee, and thou with me;
For we are bound where mariner has not yet dared to go, And we will risk the ship, ourselves and all.

O my brave soul!
O farther, farther sail!
O daring joy, but safe! Are they not all the seas of God?
O farther, farther, farther sail!"

~Walt Whitman, "Passage to India"