VSU Holiday lights and family
Trip to Biliran Leyte..Water, sand, and hikes
Our Turkey Day festivities
Mike and I at UNO Hockey Game, Omaha, NE
Reunion in Santa Fe, NM
Whit's Wedding...Hi Laurel!
Ting, ting, ting….the gentle rains have arrived! After escaping the devastation of the typhoons that rolled in the Manila area from August to October, the rainy season has officially arrived in my neck of the woods. Truth be told, I love the rainy season! The weather is much cooler, I don’t sweat as much, therefore my soggy body doesn’t threaten the students, the dogs tend not to bark as much nor mate, and lastly, it is my only sense of feeling “winter”. Currently, the temperature drops to about 70F, and for me, that requires no fan, no tank-top to sleep in, and believe it not, covers on the bed.
For the many advantages of the rainy season, it does bring slight drawbacks. One being, washed clothes (remember no dryers, everything is done laboriously) taking days to dry. Another, being random clothes you thought were dry in your wardrobe are now covered in slight mold as the moisture leaves its trail on about everything. Thirdly, the mosquitoes come out by the bushels. It has been quite entertaining watching the mosquitoes suck my blood, as now I have attained the education to determine if this little gal is trying to transmit dengue or malaria to me. Given the region I am, the odds of me contracting malaria are about the same as the Washington Redskins winning the Super Bowl this year. So dengue is the main threat, and yes, there is no cure. Lastly, my exercise routine becomes near dormant as the rain finds it common pattern to be in the morning and late afternoon/evening hours. Perfect timing, thanks rain
The second semester has begun (November) and I am very pleased with my class load. I am teaching, co-teaching rather, seven courses with seven different professors. I am so lucky, as the classes I teach are ones I am utterly zealous about such as Foundations of Recreation and Leisure, Motor Behavior Skills (Thank you undergrad and UNO for this knowledge), Principle of Teachings, Methods Classes, Nonformal education, and a science reporting class. In between classes and planning, there is a softball team to coach and to mentor, as well as a literacy program at a local village. Last but not least, is my favorite new activity, a reading club. Currently the students (all four of them) finished their first book, The Diary of Anne Frank. We had our club meetings after the assigned readings, and I was just blown away. The students, all females, age 18, were so passionate about the book and intrigued about the Holocaust. They immediate could relate to the similar adolescent struggles of Anne. They are so inquiring about Judaism, the Jewish culture, and the history of the holocaust. Their beautiful brown eyes lit up with such interest that it honestly reaches deep into any teacher’s heart. They even told me, that they have GOOGLE’d (yes Sam, google’d, not Yahoo’d) to learn more about the situation. Ahhh sigh….students becoming self-directed in their learning efforts
These young ladies have spread word about the book, that I have a long list of students waiting to read the book. I am going to make it a mandatory read for some of the future teachers. Thanks to Barbara Rubin et al, who have mailed boxes of young reader books depicting the Holocaust. We are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the mass copies of these books! Based on my inquiry to the students, they state that WWII’s history is mostly taught from the Asian front. And as you may recall, there is still much to study from the Asian front and that atrocities that Japanese brought upon the Filipinos and other Allied Forces (ie: Bataan March). However, since European history during this time is not a focal point, I find it my duty to teach about the man-made calamities that were brought upon innocent individuals.
October proved to be a nice break, as I headed back stateside for my younger sister’s wedding. It was a beautiful ceremony filled with droll and sincere moments. It was wonderful to see so many family members and friends through a special ceremony. It was the longest I had been state-side since May 2006, so I took every opportunity to see many family members and friends, which welcomed me to “the good life” of Nebraska, the adobes of Mexican food and friends in Sante Fe, delicious food and hospitality in Cleveland, and reunions and laughter in DC.
Blum, Jenna. Those Who Save Us
Desai, Kiran. The Inheritance Loss
Eugenides, Jeffery. Middlesex
Forsyth, Frederick. The Odessa Files
Ghosh, Amitar. The Hungry Tide
Gilbert, Elizabeth. Eat, Love, Pray
Keating, Barbara and Stephanie. Blood Sisters
Mathabane, Mark. Kaffir Boy
Moore. Christopher. Lamb
Orwell, George. Burmese Days
Stewart, Rory. The Places In Between