The Ocean.

two lines from the song. go figure.



15 Days! (crossing my metaphorical calendar)
Mom, Dad, Kids.
Skansen, Stockholm, Sweden.


today i feel like whining.

anyway I watched a recent episode of HIMYM where it was said that we're actually our own Doppelgangers. and supposedly we're not the same person as the ones we were 5 years ago. well, maybe.

Doppelgangers aside.

you know I can be too idealistic when it comes to the issue of making a difference and giving inspiration. but at the same time i believe that sometimes a simple, random act can make a huge difference, even a life-changing one.

i say that because i know of a few people who gave my life a turn by random chances. like the one who i passed by the corridor 11 years ago and told me that she thought i could speak. and a lady who asked me if I read the Quran, whose family now became close not only to me, but also my friends. and a few more.

i secretly smile when i see people doing the things i started doing. (excuse me for my love for myself, LOL). be it the way i wear my headscarf, my clothes, the places i go, the things i do... sometimes it feels good to be a trend-setter (again, excuse the self-appraisal), yet there are times when i realize that if there are eyes watching, and people following.. in a way, whatever they do (however remotely related to me) becomes my responsibility. and i hope that thought will help me change for the better.

anyway, back to the Doppelganger.

as much as i like the idea of inspiring people.. i despise copycats. if you're reading, stay away from the people i love. do whatever you want, i wouldn't take any credit. just go and get your own person(s). don't take mine!



six years is a long time; long enough to get to know a stranger, become friends, fall in and out of love, and love grows to hate, and eventually you lose all of the aforementioned feeling altogether.

some people say when we hate, we still care.

some say that the opposite of love is not hate, but indifference. then some also say that the opposite of hate is also indifference.

if that's true, then i am a very bad friend.

good and great teachers.

i don't see myself as a teacher (not yet?). i am only a person who thinks that she can teach.

after all, to date i have only one student on my hands. but she's already a handful.

after more than two months, suddenly she told me that she wanted a test. i thought, yea why not? all these while i've been teaching in a very casual atmosphere, mainly helping her with her homework and school assignments. i didn't really set a target, as in how much i want her to know by the end of this. after all, it is an evening school.. at the most unproductive hour of the day, when the brain is pretty much hypoxic, especially for two girls (her and myself) who i can say have a very limited span of concentration.

"я хочу свою знанию проверять". - i want to test my knowledge, she said.

ok, she got me at that. so we agreed on Tenses - the Present, Past and Future.

if you're following me on twitter you'd know how excited and anxious i am about the test.

now (i think) i know how teachers feel prior to a test or examination. what sort of questions do i ask? do i make it hard for her, or do i make sure she aces it? do i make it exactly as i those which we did together in class or do i stir in a twist? how many questions? do i ask her to underline, or circle, or write?

cut me some slack for being a noob. LOL.

i finally made the test exactly like the exercises we did in class, only changing a few verbs and nouns here and there.

yesterday was the D-day. gave her the questions, explained what to do and she answered them.

boy was she in a hurry to finish them all!

"не спеши!" - don't hurry, i told her as i noticed that she already made a few mistakes.

after she finished answering (it took her about 20mins, whereas i expected at least 30-40 mins), i asked her if she wanted to check her answers once again, to which she refused.

ok fineee.

i think teachers know how much their students know. i know that she knows. if done properly, she would've aced it.

so i asked her, what mark did she think i should give.

"двойка." - two (in Russian marking , you'll need at least a 3 to pass). told me that in school, if she makes 3 mistakes, it meant that she had flunked the test.

"это не двойка. я поставлю тебе тройку" - this isn't a two. i'm gonna give you a 3.

but that's a lot of mistakes!

i tried telling her that it's okay to make mistakes in a test, because sometimes it makes you remember better. not sure if she understood the concept.

honestly, she didn't flunk it. of course there were mistakes here and there but some answers were good.

her only problem is that she rarely takes any time to think. i told her that. and guess what her response was? she told me that she always choose guessing over thinking. if there's an MCQ question, she'd circle the answers just like that, and according to her, that way she usually gets 50% correct.

oh man. how do i make her understand? i have no idea.

yesterday i finally understood what people mean when they say that teaching and educating are two different things.

teachers teach. good teachers not only teach, they educate. and great teachers, on top of that, inspire.

and this little low me is still trying to figure out how in the world can i be all of the above.

Happy Teachers Day in advance, to great teachers who inspired me. i can never thank you enough!

crushes of motivation.

one Thursday evening, over tea and biscuits after our tuition, my student Dasha asked me:

"Aini, can you come to school tomorrow?" (our sessions are scheduled on Tuesdays and Thursday weekly)

"no I can't. I had something planned. why?"

"i want to come to school tomorrow. so i have to find something to learn, and someone to learn from."

"you like learning that much, huh?" (seriously i was getting a bit impressed :P)

"haha. not really. i do like learning, but actually "someone" will be in school tomorrow. *grin*"

"ahaaa... panyatna! i understand. motivation, right? i was like you when i was in school. *grin*."

so since i wasn't free on Friday, she went and asked Katya, our administrator.

"Katya, can you help me with my biology homework tomorrow? i need to look something up on the internet"

"well I'm free now. let's do it today"

"no, I can't do it today.. I.. er.. I forgot my textbook! so can you help me tomorrow?"


LOL. yeah. a girl's gotta do what she gotta do. i think we girls would understand, the length we'd go for our crushes. and sometimes, we get something out of it. like some educational stuffs from school for example :D

a bit of motivation can do good!

not that i'm having any at the moment.


goodnite then. ta!

Happy Earth Day, Earthlings!

Buds of Spring.
Thursday, April 22nd 2010. 15:30-ish
cool, damp, gloomy Russian spring afternoon.
took these fotos along Ostravityanova Street. opted to go home on foot instead of taking the bus,just to enjoy these buds!
hope it translates in the photos! :)

Happy Earth Day, Earthlings!