Notes on Everyday Life in My Recently Adopted Homeland

Food is interesting.  I'm learning, by trial and error, what things are.  I could look things up in a dictionary, but I like my method better.  I've only been unpleasantly surprised once (it wasn't sweet, delicious yogurt, it was some sort of fatty cheese/milk product thing).

Hungarian-American junk food, though, is another story.  If you ever find Ketchup Cheetos, don't buy them.  If you ever find Peanut Cheetos, punch the store owner in the face.  In their defense, they do taste just like peanuts, but that's the problem.  Also, I assumed that "fromage" Lays would be cheese flavored.  But they must have just thought "sour cream and onion" didn't sound very exotic.

The yogurt is awesome.  Even brands like Dannon (spelled Danone), that I eat in the US, taste much different here.  They're sort of runnier and just a lot better.  There are chunks of fruit in it that really make the texture work.  I can't really explain it, it's just awesome.

The TV in Hungary isn't very original.  It's a lot of American TV shows, but they dub them into Hungarian just to piss me off.  The only English channels are CNN and a British channel that shows crappy game shows and soap operas.  Every now and then I'll see something like the Simpsons that's only subtitled in Romanian.  It makes me really like the laziness of my neighbors to the east.

The secondary school (high-school) that I work at is similar to a high-school in the USA.  The biggest difference is that the students stay in the same classroom, and the teachers move around.  Also, the students all stand up when the teacher enters the room, and don't sit down until they're told.  That makes me feel pretty awesome.

Plus some of the students are super smart, and here is an example.  I divided a class into groups of four or five and gave them the task of picking five objects to bring if they were trapped on a desert island.  There was a very sensible answer of tons of food and water, a tent, blankets, etc.  Then there was the answer (from a group of four boys) to simply bring five girls.  I couldn't really argue with that.

Finally, there was the best and smartest answer of what to bring to a desert island.  It was a group of three girls and a boy.  They chose a computer even though they couldn't use the internet, and a lot of make-up (I think the boy lost the vote on this one).  I can't remember what their third item was, but the fourth was English books so they could keep learning.  Their final item was Alex Hoskinson.

My students like me so much that they would bring me to a desert island just so I could keep teaching them.  Does the winner of the Teacher of the Year Award have to give a speech?  I better start writing it.