Schedule Slowdown and Marvelous Middelburg

This week at Inkreadable, dear reader, may be a prelude to what is to come. I think my summer is going to be quite slow if this week is any indication. It looks like the summer courses at Lexis Amsterdam or not going go through so that means a start date and end of September. Claudia is away until at least 1 June, and Lili the other one has nine hours left on a 12 hour package of which two are to be in person. My third English center client starts on 31 May and I’m a little worried because we have 11 classes left in the package and I’m not sure that we’ll be able to finish before I leave for Greece in August. My Dutch private client will go on hiatus for the summer as well. I will probably suggest that we do online lessons while I am in Greece as that will give me a source of income. I will likely continue with Karolina and the kids in China over the summer. My Lingueo client cancelled all of her slots with me so that was a bust.

Last Tuesday I had my first Class at the school in Amstelveen and it went pretty well. The owner of the company isn’t a teacher but his definitely picked up a few pointers since the last time I was in a classroom with him. We played three games and it took me about an hour to figure out who is the class clown, who needs extra help, and who can help me run the class when the conversation playground owner is not available. I’m impressed that I was able to figure it out within the first hour. I also discovered that to get the classes attention rapping on the whiteboard and saying “this is not my circus“ and having the kids respond “we are not your monkeys” works a treat. I enjoyed myself immensely, but it became more and more clear to me that would never make a good full-time school teacher. More adult classes with more regularity is definitely my jam. Still any experience in teaching is good and I would not say no to doing more of these after school teaching through game sessions, especially if they are more closely located to Amsterdam as the commute is both expensive and annoying. You basically travel three hours round-trip for an hour class.

In other news, Jasper and I went to a Middelburg in the province of Zealand this weekend. We have both agreed that these trips are quite hard to do without a car unless you stay in the city center. Our hotel was 3 km from the city center, about a 35 minute walk through suburbia. I was consistently reminded why I am a city person and refuse to live out in the sticks. Of course, Jasper’s running joke for the weekend was that if you won the lottery on Friday we would move to Middleburg. I find that if I can smile and nod and pretend that Jasper is always right lots of headaches are avoided. He can continue in his delusional state that winning the lottery is enough of a retirement plan, but I am American and don’t have the European safety net to count on. Middelburg is a lovely town, but vacationing in the time of Covid is surreal an a bit dystopian. We ate breakfast and dinner in our room which would have been fine except we also had to go pick it up ourselves, and not the most environmentally friendly what with everything individually wrapped. Here are some pictures of our trip:

Slavery Monument

Jasper is actually striking a candid pose in the the church photo. Can you spot him? I didn’t realize that I took a picture of him until I started posting them here. To me the church looks less like a church and more like the Bodleian library at Oxford.

In other news, the first of the quarterly MRIs came back clear: no new lesions and no change in the existing ones. I was quite happy with the good news but I do wish that this was MRI four of four and not one of four. Jasper claims that MRIs are fun. This is the first time that he has been walking next to me as I write my blog posts on the go and he’s contributing. I kind of wish he would stop. MRIs are not fun and while they are not this horrible terrible thing that people make them out to be, wearing wax earplugs and headphones and trying to listen to music while in the machine can prove to be a challenge. Because, while Jasper claims that you can go to sleep in an MRI, the reality is quite different there is no sleep to be had an MRI.

That’s all she wrote for this Inkreadable installment. But stay tuned. As always, there is more to come.

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