Welcome to another village which is one, or two, or three hours away from Phnom Penh. 😛 Yes. Nobody can predict the traffic in Phnom Penh. This is also one of the many problems in Cambodia.
So, following on from my previous blog, I have started my new assignment in a college. This college wouldn’t have been built if it weren’t because of a large sum of money donated by a lady from Singapore. She visits the college every year. Hopefully, this college will become a university soon. I heard this is the vision of the management.
This time, my task is a little bit different. I don’t need to work alone. I don’t mind working independently but it’s also good to talk and discuss with someone the project and how they want to run the activities and train the students. After all, this is a college. And my class is mandatory for freshmen and mandatory for those who have registered. Discipline, responsibilities, and commitment are emphasized in the college. (So good!!)
I help to run the English Association / Club. We have ‘lessons’ every day. When I think of ‘association’ or ‘club’, I immediately relate it to activities. But here, they interpret it differently. The association provides ‘lessons’. They want the students to talk more. Basically, they want to provide oral training. But while I train them, I need to also correct their pronunciation and grammar. During the second lesson, I played a clip of Ellen’s show. 😛
Apart from the students, the staff are very busy. They are more mature than the staff in the village. They don’t have time to care about what you do in your room or why you don’t come to the office at a certain time, etc. And of course, I have also told them I’m attending / delivering online lessons. Good thing is that they understand what ‘online lessons’ are whereas in the village, the staff (there is only one by the way) and the students don’t understand. Even worse, when I used the word ‘study’, they were perplexed.
Back to the college, if you join their lunch late, sorry, too bad, no more food left for you. You need to make sure you are independent enough to take care of your own self. I am glad, so far, I have been able to join their lunch and chat with the other teachers. LOL. They tell me things about their country, food, etc. Whereas in the village, if you were in the midst of doing something (e.g. doing your big business in the bathroom), the students / staff would call you (or knock on your door) many times until you answered them. (What happened when I first got there was, when I left the door of the house open, the staff barged in without knocking. I couldn’t teach him and wouldn’t. After all, he is an adult. He should know basic manner. Then when my students came in without knocking, I taught them to knock and told them they should go into the room only after they got the permission. I even taught one of the girls how to sit properly. I wasn’t just an English teacher.) Good and bad about the way they called you. Good – in case you had an accident, they could find out immediately and help you. Bad – as I said, when you were doing your big business, sometimes you couldn’t answer anyone… you see what I mean? 😛
So now, at the college, if you miss your lunch, you miss it. The staff leave the dining hall right after they finish so they won’t know or care about who has or hasn’t had lunch. I think that’s a good arrangement for me. It suits me.
The college is big. I want to explore other parts next week like the boarding house, the guesthouse and restaurant they use for training students who study tourism, etc. Next week. I still have time. 🙂