What my students say!

Check teaching for a year in Guatemala off the proverbial list of things to do, ’cause I’m done for the summer!  I’m ready to tear through Guate con mi familia!  I’ve a lot in store for them and I hope they’re ready!  As excited as I am for my family to be here and for the school year to be at the end, it’s hard to say goodbye, even though I’m coming back.  I’ve learned a lot and I hope I’ve taught a lot.  I love my kids and I think they care a little bit about me.  The following is what they wrote in my yearbook.  I’m not showing you guys this so you think, “Oh Brendan thinks he’s great because his kids say he’s cool.”  No, you’re getting to read this because I think its funny.  I’ve left the grammar and spelling just as they wrote it (remember I taught English, History, and PE).  They call me all kinds of different things from Mr. Scott, to Scottie, to Mr. 1999, to Brendan, only outside of school.  Some of my students thought I was cool (I sure tricked them) and some didn’t think much of me at all.  Over all, I really connected with a lot of the kids at IAS (my school).  I love that they care about my dating life or lack there of.  I really hope that God uses me in their lives.  I want to see them use correct grammar and better spelling, but that may take a miracle.  I guess I’ll just accept seeing them grow in Christ.  So here are some of their quotes.  They made me laugh and each has its own story.  I hope you enjoy.

Mr. Scott,
you R really fun! I love your class!  I hope you change your mind about girls! [Me here. I told the the 8th grade girls that I thought girls were useless, but I was just kidding and they gave me a hard time about it for the rest of the year.]  I think that you have to start serching for your future wife because you have a long way to go! Jjajaja
-(8th grade girl)
Mr. Scott,
You’re an awesome teacher bisdies your horrible laps.  Keep rocking.
-(8th grade boy)
Mr. Scott,
You are crazy but it’s okay! [She wrote all of here exclamation points with hearts]
You are not cool but it’s okay!
Hope to see you next year hope you become funner!  [One day during class she stopped me mid lecture and said, “I thought you said class was going to be fun.”  Ouch!]  I love you as a teacher
-(7th grade girl)
Mr. Scott,
I aggree with [the 8th grade girl about me needing to change my mind about girls] HaHaHa!  Thanks Mr. for the adivce you gave to me!  I hope to see you next year.  Thanks for all!
-(8th grade boy)
Mr. SCOTT
you’re classes are awesome and overall you are cool and have a cold summer in coloRado.  Mr. 1999, be a little less strict.
-(6th grade girl)
Mr. Scott
You r soo cool thanx 4 Every thing Cya next year!!!
-(7th grade girl)
Hey Mr. Scott!
Hope you have an awesome sumer! You are kind of cool! JK! [smily face] It was fun having you this year!  See you next year!
-(8th grade girl)
Mr. Scott
Thanks for the cool PE class that we had  See you next year
-(8th grade boy)
Mr. Scott
I hope you don’t give a lot of exersize
-(5th grader who I will teach next year)
Scott,
You’re cool!  I’m glad you like Coldplay as much as I do!  Have an awesome summer!  Don’t get lost!
-(8th grade girl)
Mr. Scott,
You are a awesome teacher, thank you for teaching us History.  See you next year.  Have a cool summer.
-(7th grade girl)
Mr. Scott you’re cool but dont Make us run in P.E.!  P.S. let os play rugby
-(7th grade boy)
Sccotie-
Have a nice summer.  Thanks for the emarecing moments on P.E.  I’ll miss them.
-(10th grade boy)
Mr. Scott
Have a happy life.
-(10th grade boy that knows I’ll be back next year)
Scottie (as they call you . . .)
You weren’t my actual teacher . . . But, I really enjoyed hearing about your first kiss and bad influences. Heh.
-(10th grade girl)
Reading through all of these proves to me that I connected with my students in some way or another, which was my desire in coming down here.  As I look to coming back and teaching next year I can only wonder where God will take these relationships or if he will help my students and me learn how to spell and use correct grammar.  I heard he was in the miracle business.

Coban Canceled!

Being that apologies via the blog are all the rage right now (Mark Cuban’s, owner of the Dallas Mavericks, apology to K-Mart’s, Power Forward for the Denver Nuggets, mom) I would like to apologize to my readers because this blog you are about to read isn’t what you might expect and it isn’t the blog I wanted to write. So please bear with me for a minute or two while I complain. Two weeks ago I wrote about how running has changed me. How I was so excited to run in a half-marathon here in Guatemala. Well, shortly after I jotted my last blog, the half-marathon was canceled. Why? Swine flu. Wow! Swine flu must be really bad down there, you may be thinking. Well, in Guatemala there has been one case and that was about a month ago. Did you notice the “has” and the “one.” They both indicate singular and the “has” indicates past tense. So why cancel the race? I know that the swine flu isn’t something to joke about, but I think the Guatemalan government over reacted by canceling the race.

I want to look at some international happenings really quickly. Mexico, the nation that had it the worst, allowed its fine people to start attending soccer games the same week Guatemala canceled my race. Maybe Guatemala just cares more about its people. I doubt it. If you’ve been following the world news you might know that President Alvaro Colom is in trouble for the suspicious death of a lawyer. I’d say more but I don’t want to end up missing. (Just google search Alvaro Colom and you can find out more for yourself.) So how does this connect with the cancellation of the race? Well, they said they canceled it because they did not want to allow large gatherings. I mean a thousand or so people were going to run the race, many from other countries, all gathering at once could cause a pandemic. That could explain the cancellation except for the fact the government paid 30,000 people to rally their support for Colom and then they allowed another 30,000 to protest him. The government allowing 60,000 people to gather on the same day my race was scheduled to be doesn’t make me think they really care for their people. But maybe they all were safe because they’d bought hand sanitizer and masks. I guess you can’t quiet run in a mask, so I just wouldn’t have been safe.

I wanted to write a blog today about how the race went, all the sights I saw, how my legs kept pumping even after my mind said stop. Instead I spent my day writing a test and watching the Lakers bumble past the Rockets. (Boring!) I guess you could say I’m slightly depressed. I don’t think I’ve trained so hard for anything and then just to have it ripped away at the last moment really sucks. But aren’t there other races you could run in the states? I know you’re asking that right now. Yes there are. There is actually one on the 14 of June, but it’s not the same. I just trained for 12 weeks to run this race in Coban. Coban is eight hours away and a beautiful place, from what I’ve been told. Part of running there was being able to visit a new part of the country I live in. I can’t say that about the race in Denver. And with all of the training I put in I feel like I should be able to race now. I’m going to lose a toenail and I lost ten pounds while training (okay my intestinal infection helped with that). But it’s just a race. I think I can read your minds now. It’s not just about the race though. I never thought I would run a half-marathon until Yasi, my school’s secretary, convinced me to run with her. Yasi is probably the most helpful person in the world and loves to run more than I do. All of the races in the states wont have my training partner in them, she’s got to stay with her husband and kid in Guatemala. I don’t want to run alone.

The moment I found out that the race was canceled I felt awful. I can only relate it to what it feels like to end a relationship. My blood, sweat (gallons), and other bodily stuff were lost to this race only for it to be torn away from me. I’m still very mad about it being canceled and it doesn’t help that I should have run the race today. Instead I went to the gym this morning and ran seven miles on the treadmill. Lame. I wanted to achieve the goal I worked so hard to attain. Now I have to say, maybe next year. But maybe I need to look at what good things training for this race led to. I’m in the best shape of my life; I keep on being able to say that because I keep on getting in better shape. Training for it gave me an outlet for the stress of teaching 12 year olds. And lastly I’ve made friends because of this race. Along with Yasi, I’ve gone running with a couple other people and now when I go to the gym I can have small conversations with them in Spanish. The race may have been canceled but it has opened my world here in Xela. I guess that’s a good thing and I’ll just have to be patient and see where God takes this.