I think I hate everyone and everything Country X right now. I think that is what has happened. The immigration ministry has decided I need to leave, and now I hate everyone. It’s a possibility anyway. Otherwise, I have no explanation for why my students are driving me so insane.

The thing is they are doing the same things that adults do. They are things that have bothered me all along, but now they make me want to kill someone. They criticize relentlessly. (The next time a kid tells me about a minor misdeed that occurred 20 minute ago, I will completely lose my mind.)

The concept of “letting it go” would be useful here. Maybe it is just what third and fourth graders do. In this case, I need some perspective. I am not a primary school teacher. I don’t have a clue.

They fight. Constantly. “He was playing. She kicked me (on accident). He isn’t giving me my pencil back (because he’s not finished doing what he borrowed it to do).” They talk over each other and all at once—this isn’t my bad classroom management. They talk all at once to their other teachers too. They are loud. (Just like adults.) They don’t listen when other people are speaking, but instead ignore instructions while they are being made and then frantically discuss what is expected amongst themselves during and after. (Also just like adults.) What they decide usually turns out to be different than what is expected. I have been able to train class four into listening first, but class three is incorrigible. One of my class fours can talk nicely to each other, and the other fights like mad. Class three seems to be hopeless. I would like to give them all knives and let them get the killing over with, because that seems to be what they want to do.

I don’t know what has happened here, but the famed happiness in Country X is really, “We are not allowed to show negative feelings. We keep everything inside and then go home and kick the dog or beat our wives and children. Or drink ourselves to death.”

But they are lovely people. I just hate them right now.

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