I thought the students were just confused. They were intimidated by my charm and dashing looks. No. Their textbooks really tell them the name of the subject is "maths". With an "S". I don't know what the British are trying to pull here, but it's my job to help these kids. They're going to go to America and get pissed off when their sandwich comes with chips instead of fries, and then get seriously injured when someone bigger than them asks if they want to play football.
One of the main topics I've focused on the past two days has been these differences. They know quite a few, and they're usually right. However, they think we only ride in a cab (not a taxi), we only say "oh my gosh" (not "oh my God"), and we never say something is "in" the street (just "on" it). Overall, I'm impressed with their knowledge. But it needs to sink in. I asked a student, "What's your favorite holiday?" He answered, "Summer holiday." I meant Christmas.
Holidays have been the other topic of the week. In Hungary, I was relieved to find out, not all traces of communism have been tossed aside. They still have their "day of the workers", which I think is similar to our Labor Day (except it's on May 1st and may or may not have fireworks).
Another interesting fact is how they celebrate Easter. The boys go over to the girls' houses, and then they pour water or perfume on their heads. If the girls aren't home, the boys assured me they do find them. The boys are then rewarded with colored eggs. But now that capitalism has snuck in, they just get money (and seem to like it better). I was fascinated by this, so I've been asking everyone why they do it, what started it all? They look at me like I'm fool and all tell me the exact same answer. It's tradition. Thank you, I never would've guessed that.
This has all helped me realize how lucky I am to be an American. If I was Hungarian, I'd have to chase girls around to get my Easter eggs. If I was British, I would waste a good portion of my life writing extra letters and saying an unnecessary amount of syllables. The only downside is I'll never find a taxi.