The honeymoon is over?

28 September, 2009

(I wrote this last night!)

Yeah, I saw my first cockroach in my apartment. It was bigger than all the cockroaches I’d ever seen in my NYC apartment. I found it crawling on my door right after I came back home for the night. I was bigger than a blackberry pearl and it had legs that made it look like it could jump off the wall and into my face at any moment. A girl in the program was telling me earlier about how a cockroach fell on her head while she was washing her face once. I’m buying Raid ™ asap.

Today was our first day of classes. Our group of 15 was split into 2 groups and I got put in a class with Kenny and 5 other students / teachers in training. In our class we have the Aussie (specifically from Tazmania, aka Kenny’s roommate), two Brits, one South Carolinian and a Canadian. We had 4 classes today which started around 10 and ended at 5. This was probably the longest day of classes that I’ve had since my senior year of college when I had class from 1030 in the morning until 9 at night. Oof.

I have to admit that I was slightly delirious from sleep deprivation for most of the day due to my horrific jet lag which allowed me one hour of sleep throughout the whole night. I usually don’t get jet lag, I feel like I’m pretty adept at adjusting my sleep schedule, but somehow, last night, no matter what I did I couldn’t sleep. Strangely enough, I wasn’t the only one awake. Egyptians have a strange habit of going to sleep around three in the morning on any given day. From my window I could hear mirth and merriment going on all night… or morning, however you want to put it. Around 4:30 the first call to prayer of the day was broadcasted into the darkness, followed by another one around 5:30. The afternoon calls to prayers re definitely more robust, from what I’ve heard at least.  I like to imagine that no matter how devoted to anything you are, submitting to god, or submitting a paper, any normal human will be sleepy in the pre-dawn hours.

Whatever the case, the four classes were pretty fun. Our first class was on grammar and phonology. We went over parts of speech and all that jazz that none of us had really touched upon since 4th grade English class. We talked a bit about the methodology of teaching language and there was definitely mention of Democracy Now’s favorite guest speaker, Mr. Don’t-forget-I-was-a-linguist-first Chomsky.

We also had a class on teaching methodology, another one on activities (role playing, games, whatnot) you can use to engage the students. We spent a significant amount of time coming up with ridiculous skits and made a whole lotta noise. Lemme tell you, Kenny can let out a pretty impressive high pitched Flander’s-esque scream.  Our final class of the day was about how to use black/white boards and other ways to effectively display information to your students in and out of the classroom. The first thing we did in that class was make our own website (I’m not putting up the url, it’s not even worth it) that we could possibly use in the future if we want a website corresponding to our lesson plans. Apparently the computers at the school are incredibly slow so this task took a lot longer than the teacher anticipated. Due to the elongated time span of the computer session, she had to rush us through the rest of the day’s plan with the fury of a thousand confused tigers.

I slept in the van on the ride home, but I somehow mustered enough energy to go for an afternoon swim at the beach. Even at dusk, the water was so warm, definitely a far cry from the Jersey shore.

(after I wrote that I dozed off, I don’t think there was much more to the day anyway)

UPDATE: I have internet in my room! Kenny killed a cockroach in the hallway of the school! We ordered falafel sandwiches for lunch today and it came to a grand total of two Egyptian pounds (5.68 pounds  = 1 dollar)!  I miss eating raw vegetables! We might go to Luxor this weekend! THERE ARE SO MANY STRAY CATS!

More to come soon! Leave us adoring comments!

Oh and here are some pictures of fun things!


10 Responses to “The honeymoon is over?”

  1. miki said

    wow you are both very good writers. . . it sounds/looks awesome!!!! and yay for beaches and big roaches. . . . sounds like hawaii well minus the falafel sandwiches and the egypt part. . . but the beach looks absolutely amazing! fun fun fun. . . hope you got some good sleep. . .

  2. Danielle said

    Not sure if you will get them in that neck of the Med, but you have to try the fresh sardines when they come in! And drink your weight (both of you) in mango juice for me! 🙂

    • Setters said

      I drink mango juice everyday for breakfast. it’s awesome. I haven’t seen any sardines for sale here, that might be more of a northern Mediterranean thing (They were pretty prevalent when I was in Spain) but if I come across fresh sardines in a restaurant, I’ll definitely indulge. mmmm.

  3. Megan hungry and stuck in an office Martin said

    NY vs. Egyptian cockroach smackdown MUST be in order. Besides your many-legged friends everything sounds very very very pleasant. FYI I’m jealous. It rained this weekend and killed a part of my soul.

  4. yo-jin said

    do the cockroaches fly? korean cockroaches, also found on bathroom walls right by your showerhead

  5. Katie said

    Your guys’ stories are too good! I’ve heard that Egyptians are up at all hours of the night, the dancers I’ve met that perform there will go on at midnight or 1 in the morning.

  6. lila said


  7. lila! said

    what’s with the tan icon? i want a better icon.

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