Sunday, November 2, 2008

Samhain in Korea

Halloween began for me on the friday two weeks before halloween, when i taught my gr. 6s at Seogwi Jungang their first halloween lesson. It was so much fun and far more related to english culture than language. I showed them the nightmare before christmas intro and then went over monster vocab and then we created monsters. It was awesome to see what some of the kids came up with. Some of them were so bloody and evil. As the lessons progressed i started to gear them towards the units they were working on. The gr. 5s built haunted houses as they were working on a chapter on rooms in the house. The gr. 6s started studyiong what do you want to do? so we went over action verbs related to halloween and created a comic strip. The piece de resistance was the haunted house i made in what is supposed to be my classromm but has ben under renos since i started. It was so sweet. I built some tunnels they had to climb through and a graveyard and had a dead body (well half a dead body). I also did the good old peeled grapes for eyeballs and spaghetti for brains. The final touch was covering the windows in the monsters haunted houses and comics the kids had created, in order to darken the room.

I dressed up for both my schools, on tuesday for my rural school and on halloween for my main school. I created an awesome zombie biker costume with a bit of pirate and a hint of tank girl in it. It was of course inspired by THE SEOGI PIRATES. My kids loved it. They were totally freaked out and thought it was hilarious. I even made one of my gr. 6 boys cry. I did not actually witness it but when i heard i had to laugh. Of course things got a little nuts when the kids realized i had candy and was giving it to them freely, well if they said trick or treat. By the end of the day almost everything was trashed and i was exhausted but boy was it good.

After school i went home and cooked and got ready while watching The Rocky Horror Picture Show. It revived my spirits and i was looking forward to going and scring random Koreans on the street. The Koreans had an interesting reaction to us. The adults would mainly look once and then ignore us, barely showing the slightest sign of shock. I was very impressed with how good they were. The children were either scared or stared and point or asked for candy. Once we made it to city hall in jeju-si we got many more amusing reactions from the drunken Koreans wondering the streets. They all accepted the candy i offered them without even thinking about it. Which i thought was an interesting example of how trusting Koreans can be. They don't seem to have that same ingrained fear that consumes us in the West. I do wonder what gees through their minds as those crazy weiguks wander past dressed in slutty, bloody, grotesque, mutant robotic costumes.

The party at Blue Agave was kicking once we finally found it, which took quite a while. There were some wicked costumes; graeme dressed as a robot and one first prize, another guy dressed as a transformer and got second prize. Myself, autumn girl, the paper bag princess all tied for third place and received a bottle of cass beer. There were also some really good couple costumes; mummies, bottles of soju. I dont even know what time i ended up leaving after drinking a whole lot. But i ended up going to a Genny and Jeff's house (who i hadn't met yet) with Jason who is an a musician who has been teaching here for three years. We attempted to watch halloween but i don't remember any of it. In fact i don't remember anything until Jeff informed us it was after 1 in the afternoon and we should probably get up. Genny made us delicious pancakes and foul korean flavoured coffee. That and a few ibuprofens helped take the edge off of my aching head. It was an awesome halloween.

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