May 6, 2012

What I've Been Up To Lately

After a wonderful week of no school, no students and no planning during Semana Santa, reality sunk in pretty hard immediately thereafter. And by reality, I mean the notion of there are only two months left until I leave I should probably figure out "what comes next" pretty darn quick.

Ideally I would like to be teaching middle or high school math somewhere in the Twin Cities with coworkers I enjoy, some ability to use my Spanish and a commute that doesn't make me curse snow/MN drivers/MNDOT on a daily basis. In an effort to obtain this I have been applying to jobs non-stop since Spring Break. Applying to teaching jobs basically means entering all the EXACT SAME information that is already in my resume/cover letter/letters of recommendation/transcripts/teaching license into whatever database the school has chosen to use. Luckily, many public schools in Minnesota use the same database, which has been extremely helpful...and made me start cursing the ones who don't. I have had one interview so far, which resulted in a job offer almost immediately following...but I turned it down in favor of (hopefully) finding something closer to the Twin Cities. Fingers crossed!!!

Besides spending countless hours of prep time/weeknights/Fridays at the kitchen table applying for jobs, I have been trying to make the most of my last weeks in Colombia! This place has been my home for three years now and I definitely want to really appreciate all the wonderful things about this place and the people here before I leave it. Here's what I have been up to:
  • Our water company (EmCali) appears to have gotten in together in regards to our water situation AKA it stopped being turned off at random, inconvenient times and (knock on wood) I haven't had to take a shower with a bucket in weeks. Hooray! One particular intense storm on a Wednesday night did however knock out all of our power. We spent the night reading by headlamp, eating a candlelit dinner, and watching TV on our computers until the batteries died. I wouldn't say I would like it to happen again soon, but it was kind of nice for one night...
  • The spring musical at school featured some very talented students and teachers, included one of my 8th graders who absolutely rocked the role of Cha Cha. We went to see the play with some friends one Saturday night and I remembered how cool it is to see my students succeeding at things they love outside the classroom.
  • We went to the Delirio salsa show with some coworkers. I had been once before, but wanted to see it again. Salsa is such an integral part of Colombian culture and the constant infusion of salsa music and dancing into EVERYTHING is definitely a trademark of this country.

  • Math Olympics 2012! A joint middle and high school event, this contest has 8th & 9th graders paired together in teams of four working on problems in a variety of Jeopardy-style categories to earn points. The winning team earns bragging rights (math nerds for the win!) and t-shirts designed by yours truly which say "Mathlete CB 2012" on the front and simply, "show your work" on the back. And they are purple, of course. Teams from 6th & 7th grade also compete as well as 10th/11th/12th grade teams together. 

  • Kelsi and some other coworkers ran in La Carrera de La Mujer, a women-only 8K run here in Cali. Stetson and I went to cheer her on and take lots of pictures along the way. The day was sunny, albeit a little hot for running and I remembered once again that even though I'm not a runner myself, there is something so energizing about cheering on others while they run!

Go Kelsi!!! 

Obvio I'm #1 in her fan club. that's the update from Colombia. Now to focus on planning the rest of the school year, applying to more jobs, and moving my life and all the things it contains back to Minnesota. Yikes.

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