Monday, June 20, 2005

More Cynical Sneering

We're doing directions and descriptions of towns; it was in the book, I wasn't taking the piss or anything. Deliberately. It was something like 'Describe the town where you live. What is there to do? What is there to see? What is there to eat?...' The students were totally scoobied by this. Eventually: 'There's a park!' Where? 'Opposite the bank.' I know that park: withered grass, some concrete walkways and benches, stunted trees. And of course no less than two fountains, neither working. That was it. 'Come to Zawiya and see our poxy park!' Should I have burst out laughing or into tears?

The last three afternoons have, one gathers, been given over to Peoples' Committees. Our students have been a bit vague about this, though one of mine (mis?) translated the concept as 'Revolution'. He's a beginner, mind, but perhaps he knows something I don't. Someone who's read Colonel Mustard's Little Green Book once told me that People's Committees are the expression of the people's will - like the original Bolshevik concept of the Soviet.

In practice, the afternoon shift have been laughing (or should that be more rueful grinning?), because their classes have been cancelled for the last three days. It also means the shops are shut until after eight o'clock, though I noticed some eating-places were only pretending to be shut.

Nothing I've read the last few days has cheered me.