Palestinian Potential and A Root Return

It has been in a rather interesting week at Inkreadable. I’ll start with the English Center because that’s where the bulk of my clients are currently. I have three students, Martin who is in the middle of a second package of 10 hours as well as ShinWei who is in the middle of a fourth 10-hour package. I also go to Amstelveen once a week on a Friday for Harumi who is Japanese. Martijn is a solid B2 in terms of understanding, but a B1 in his speaking. I suspect that’s because he hasn’t been doing much talking to his colleagues in China. But there is progress and I am quite pleased with it. ShinWei is probably about a C1 in terms of his vocabulary and his grammar as he’s started to use very complex sentence structures. Harumi remains at an A2 level, however. She is not using her English nearly at all. She is fully integrated into the Japanese community here in Amsterdam so that makes it a little difficult for her to practice.

At the end of last week, I also received news from my friend Rose that the English Center was looking for a teacher to replace another friend of mine who was no longer able to teach two sisters age 13 and 17 in Palestine. Rose couldn’t do it because of a time conflict. She and I kind of have each other’s backs in terms of teaching gigs with the English Center. If there is something that I cannot do I recommend her and if there’s something she cannot do, she recommends me. I was contacted by Marike and happily took the job which starts tomorrow. By Saturday I had scheduled a 15-minute meeting Monday with the father of the girls to talk about his expectations. On Sunday I talked to Krys who was their previous teacher. I was the one who recommended Krys for the English Center ND she is a real-life acquaintance. We met at the Black Lives Matter march in June of 2020 in the middle of the pandemic. We talk on occasion and I actually helped her for a bit with learning a bit of Greek for a trip that she was taking. After talking to her I kind of wish that I didn’t have to take these students. The girls, while sweet, have no interest in learning English and spend time on their phones during the class. They also get interrupted every 5-minutes by various people in their home. The girls apparently don’t do any homework that is assigned even though the father expects it, but he is not able to enforce that they do the homework. I also learned that the older girl is extremely angry with Israel and the government’s treatment of Palestine. I think I’m going to have to tread carefully and say nothing. Their father has some very high expectations for their English-language goals but I am not sure I’m going to be able to enforce them from 1500 miles away and had to tell him that. The English Center said that I should do a progress report after each class, and gave me a format for it. I appreciated Krys’ candor and TEC’s suggestions. We’ll wait to see what happens tomorrow before taking further steps.

It was a wonderful Thursday evening for the writers’ group. I have decided that if people choose to continue online they can handle that themselves. I am going back to our roots and reading on Thursdays came up with the possibility of weekend morning writings either online or in-person. For me personally, it was a very interesting Thursday evening as I discovered that I lost a good chunk of writing. it turns out that it was a pivotal portion of my writing as well. I started rewriting the bits that I could remember and then realized that I had an older version on my computer so I spent the weekend incorporating the new stuff my old stuff into something that I quite like a little bit better. We returned on Thursday to the library and I think that worked a treat. While the pub that is close to the library is not as cozy as O’Reilly’s it will serve in a pinch.

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

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