This week was very good from a teaching standpoint. The weather was nice, the kids were frighteningly good, and my company stayed out of my way. All of this goodness led me to feel somewhat generous.
The kids I taught this week will not see me until my triumphant return from America, therefore, I felt it necessary to take "presento" requests from the kids. Its not everyday they get a chance to interact with someone going to America so I figured I would get all of them something that is difficult or impossible to obtain in Japan. For the younger kids, I will be bringing back pennies, and small candy like Tootsie Rolls for they are cheap and keep well on long journeys. The only difficulty will be keeping myself from eating them.
The older kids know more English so I allowed them to make requests for small things that were not horribly expensive or big. Some of these requests so far have been interesting and mildly entertaining. Here is a list of what has been asked of me so far:
Pencils: They want an American pencil...umm...okay, can do. Way to reach for the
stars, though they get bonus points for wanting something they can use.
A Baseball Glove: Uhh....not happening. I suggested baseball cards instead and this
made two boys almost giddy with excitement. It will be fun to see
how they react to them when I come back.
A Baseball Bat: Not happening first of all, secondly, it was a girl that asked for it
which was kind of strange. Her next try was a signed baseball. I told
her that my city didn't have a professional team and she was shocked.
Sidenote: Most medium sized cities here have Pro Baseball teams. Her
next request was for just a baseball. I told her maybe but that isn't
really a neat souvenir so I don't think she is getting it unless I
get her a Boise Hawks ball or something.
Video Games: Probably not happening because of price but I may surprise them if I can
get a cheap GBA or DS game used. Plus to this request is that it would
be a motivator for learning more English.
Clothing: Another one I am not sure of but haven't totally ruled out. We will see, I
actually have some spare Boise High shirts that I was given to trade in
here that I may give to them instead. We'll see, the problem with clothes
is that most clothing that is truly American is expensive name brand crap.
Keychains: Can do!!
This list only came from two classes. I need to be careful or else I will be spending more than I want on these kids. There are only a handful of classes that are getting the privledge to make requests and I have already told them some stuff was too expensive so I think I am doing a good job not inflating their hopes too much and keeping the cost to me down. July will be a fun month just to be able to see how they like everything. I am especially looking forward to the baseball card guys because they asked for something unique, easy to find, and cheap. If I have money to spare I may pick each of the two boys up an Ichiro card or a Matsuzaka card so they can have an American card of a player they are familiar with.
Now that I think of it, I wonder of this whole week of being ungodly good to Tyson Sensei was just a simple ploy to get treats and goodies from me. Hmmm.