A few days ago (on Feb 25), we had a fire scare at school. Ironically, something actually smells like burning in my house right now. I think it's coming from the upstairs kitchen. Anyway, there was an electrical smell on the ground floor. Buffy and I looked around, but couldn't find anything suspicious. The smell didn't go away, so we ended up evacuating our students and calling in the electricians. The students did really well, especially considering we (the teachers) didn't have a lot of information for them while we were waiting around at the evacuation point. They were very patient and calm. I was super impressed. We evacuated a little after 11am and took the students back into the auditorium a little before 1pm (where they were then dismissed for the day), so it was quite a process. There was a little bit of a communication breakdown during the second half of the drill (what do you call it when it's not a drill?), so a group of us teachers got together to brainstorm ideas to make the process more concrete.
I had t go back to the hospital today because I was told that they needed more information to process my medical. So, I got my coteacher to cover my class , arranged transportation with one of the drivers and headed out this morning. Only, when I got there, it turned out my medical is finished and it hadn't been necessary for me to come in at all! Somebody in HR had jumped the gun. I was quite grateful, actually, because I really didn't want to get more blood drawn since I had so much bruising last time. The ladies who work at that clinic are wonderful, but the place is pretty dingy. Visa medicals are never done in nice hospitals. In Korea, China and now Saudi Arabia, each exam was done in the smallest, third-worldiest clinic to be found. The one in China had no soap. Anywhere. In Korea, the phlebotomist neglected to wear gloves. At least here, the basics are on the up and up. Plus, the head nurse is Egyptian, speaks great English, and remembered my name when I came in today. Unfortunately, I don't remember her name because I suck.
I had my observation yesterday. It went really well. At first, my girls clammed up, but once they realized it was no big deal we were all good. I mean, I don't expect anyone to break out into "O Captain, My Captain" anytime soon, but I feel pretty good about my teaching. It's review week, so things aren't quite as exciting as they normally are and everyone is ready for vacation. I told m students that I only get a one week vacation (they get two) and joke sobbed. One of my students (one of my five Nourah's, to be precise) offered to trade vacations. I should take her up on it and have her go to our training in Al Khobar (the city where our main campus is) in my stead. We have a training right before vacation (a great big high five [in the face] to the person who scheduled that). So, I have to pack for 2 days in Al Khobar, 4 days in Riyadh and 5 days in India all at the same time. Fantastic! I suppose that's a pretty first-world problem to have.
I can't wait to send my students away fro two weeks, though. I do adore them, but I need a little break. I look forward to starting the new term fresh. I can't believe there's just a 3 month term between me and summer vacation (which will be 6-8 weeks long, the schedule hasn't been finalized yet). I'm going to forget how to teach with a holiday that long!
Well, I'd better go to bed if I'm to be of use to anyone tomorrow. Good night!