I am absolutely, irrevocably, completely, 100% in love with each and every single one of my students. I have four separate classrooms full of the most beautiful, agreeable children one could imagine. There are of course the small instances of too much talking or other small cut-ups, but one mention of the wrong doing, and the students stop. No questions asked, no smart comments. They are all full of so much personality, I sometimes get worn out trying to keep up with them. But due to playful, light-hearted, and kind nature of these great amounts of personality, keeping up with them is something I am more than willing to do.
I've noticed this type of personality is very prevalent here. Australians lack that speedy, uptight, need to prove yourself attitude that seems to fit the stereotypical American. Not that I don't love my country, I do, I just think that we could learn a lot from this laid back lifestyle. Australians know how to laugh at themselves, they don't get offended over small issues that are overall irrelevant, and less of a sense of entitlement that... I'm again lacking for words, but my point is pretty clear.
You can see the effects of this less stressful lifestyle in more than just their personalities. Every one I've met looks so much younger than an American of the same age. They all look extremely young and healthy. I've also noticed that I've yet to see a single woman with more than extremely simple make-up on her face. I may be attributing wrongly here, but I also think this stems from the simplicity of the lifestyle. With less stress, they first of all have less lines and imperfections to cover. I also think though that growing up in an environment where you feel good about yourself and lack violent stressors, it is much easier to be okay in your own skin and to lack those insecurities that so many people back home seem to have. At any rate, I think it looks much prettier.
A couple weird quirks I've noticed:
Steph-Just like in Ireland, they put butter or margarine on ALL their sandwiches. They also use MAYONAISSE as salad dressing. It makes me want to vomit. There must be something to this lack of stressful atmosphere, because I really don't understand how they are all so thin and without coronaries.
All public bathrooms have port-a-potty style locks on them. Instead of saying occupied, they say engaged. I know this is really dumb, but I am still amused by it. Not sure why.
When someone offers to give you a lift here, that does not mean I will come to your house and pick you up, or drive to your house to drop you off. That means, you walk to the closest intersection, no matter how far away, and I will hope the light is red and pick you up there. Same for getting dropped off. I'm dying to find out if this is the case on dates as well... I should probably find that one out by experience, what do you think, Hayden? :)
And this is just plain annoying... all TV shows are a season or two behind here. So I am re-watching House. Also, you apparently cannot watch shows on Fox online unless you are actually in the United States. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
Speaking of Hayden's... A monsoon came at the school yesterday. There were literally parts of the school walkways that were a foot deep in water. Somehow, all of my Year 8s were able to make it to class dry and on time, except for a certain Hayden, who was late and completely soaked from head to toe, with extremely smelly feet and hair pointing in every direction possible from the water to top it off. It appears the correlation between the names and personalities continues....
I continue to miss all of you very, very much! I'm scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef this weekend, so hopefully there will be much exciting news come Monday (or Sunday to you guys)!
Parents-Because I will be in Cairns at the Great Barrier Reef this weekend, so I may have trouble getting in touch with you again; however, I am pretty sure there is free wi-fi where we are staying, so I should be able to call you Saturday or Sunday. If not, I'll send you an email and let you know a time I can call during the week so that you can make sure if you are at work you can answer your phone.