Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Country-kid Fireworks

       "'Stop here,' David said suddenly. 'Pull ahead just a little, so the headlights are pointing up into the field. Now turn off the headlights.'
       The field sparkled with what must have been millions of fireflies--the most I've ever seen in one place. They'd probably brought their families from adjacent states into this atrazine-free zone. They blinked densely, randomly, an eyeful of frenzied stars.
       'Just try something,' David said. 'Flash the headlights one time, on and off.'
       What happened next was surreal. After our bright flash the field went black, and then, like a wave, a million lights flashed back at us in unison.
       Whoa. To convince ourselves this was not a social hallucination, we did it again. And again. Hooting every time, so pleased were we with our antics. It's a grand state of affairs, to fool a million brainless creatures all at the same time. After five or six rounds the fireflies seemed to figure out that we were not their god, or they lost their faith, or at any rate went back to their own blinky business.
       David chuckled. 'Country-kid fireworks.'"
                             -- Barbara Kingsolver (Animal. Vegetable. Miracle.)

I'm sort of excited for things like this to exist in my life soon, though, of course, now that my departure is imminent, I'm not having such a hard time here in Prague. Granted, I've only been in this wonderful mood since Thanksgiving, but I've felt pretty good about my lessons this week, had a great weekend and maybe even feel like I'm starting to get the hang of teaching. Figures.

Last night was spent with good friends and free sangria, and again, sometimes I just feel an overwhelming sense of pride in myself for getting here, for finding myself in a place surrounded by so many inspiring people. Even though I'm leaving, I worked hard to learn the ropes these several months. The TEFL course was probably one of the hardest and most intimidating things I've ever done and I survived it with a strong pass. While most of the time I feel like I've no idea what I'm doing in the classroom, the number of days I feel good about my lessons is slowly increasing. Recently, I've even started to notice my students using words or grammar concepts I taught them, which would induce a motherly sense of pride in any girl...if my students weren't mostly middle-aged men with children of their own. No Matter.

Regardless, Prague will always be here and I feel generally confident that this is what I need in my life right now. I was always bad at goodbyes. Awfully bad at them for someone who seems to thrive on this constant motion, propelled towards each new place though it may only be some blurry silhouette of a plan on the horizon.

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