At the end of last semester, all the teachers had to go to an off-campus faculty workshop. The day was a half day, and they were all going to a hotel on a mountain and the majority of them were going to sleep there. The school provided dinner, snacks, and the rooms…well after you paid about $20. (I actually mentioned it here.) It turns out, I did have to go. We had to sit through a long presentation. Part of it was my school principal reading 3 typed pages practically verbatim, but pausing to elaborate on some points. He was incredibly boring, and even one of my co-workers made it a point to tell me that even though she was Korean, she couldn’t really understand him.
After him, there was a general presentation from someone from another school. I could basically understand that his point was: our school is awesome and you should follow our example. They had the teachers divided by subject and they brought one of their teachers for each subject. However, the foreign teacher (our school has English, Japanese, and Chinese for foreign languages) didn’t show up and so we were lumped with the math teachers. Oh yeah, you can bet I was bored. Fortunately, my co-teacher was also bored and the two of us were not going to be staying the night. We slipped out of there just before dinner was served…freedom!
Now, I’m being asked/demanded to go to another workshop of some sort with my fellow English teachers. (I work with 4 out of 13 English teachers). They are going this Saturday (!?) and they are going somewhere very far. So far, in fact, that one of the teachers decided he wanted to push everyone to stay the night. Basically, a night stay means that they want to go drinking. (A lot of the younger female teachers looked uncomfortable with this suggestion…In Korean culture, older men can socially force younger coworkers to drink.) They talked about this last week, and I told them I couldn’t stay the night. (I used my cat as an excuse. Lol. Then they said I should bring my cat—I told them that she’s horrible with car rides and everyone will want to kill her by the time we arrive…it’s true, she’s SO obnoxiously loud.) Anyway, after the meeting, I was told that a few of the other teachers were bailing on the workshop so I didn’t have to go if I didn’t want to. Yay!
Then, today, there was ANOTHER meeting. They asked me AGAIN if I wanted a one day or a two-day thing. I told them one day, but tried to ask “but I thought I wasn’t going?” They promptly ignored me and continued their meeting in Korean. After the meeting, I turned to one of my coworkers and repeated that I didn’t want to go and I thought that was decided last week. I guess because I answered “one day” they thought I wanted to go. (WTF) Later, two of my co-teachers tried to ask me why I couldn’t/didn’t want to go. I explained to them that I would be very bored because it’s all in Korean and I won’t be able to understand. (WASTE OF TIME!)
I don’t know if I’m going to the “workshop” Saturday. I guess I’ll know for sure by Saturday. Lol. That said, the workshop isn’t even a teacher thing. From what I understand, it’s some type of big festival. I’m not at all sure what the purpose of going is, and I am NOT inclined to go especially when some teachers proved that attendance is not mandatory. Oh, and it would cost 30,000 won (about $30) and I would be car-pooling with co-workers.