The school is on the second floor of this apartment building, with the front desk guarded by fierce babushkas twenty-four hours a day. Please note the yellow marshrutka. That's the kind of bus where the horrible embarrassment occurred (see earlier post).
View from the teachers' room.
Yaroslav, Vlada, Maxim, Polina, Yeva, and Nicole. This is the Basic Reading class. Vlada is super-smart and eager to please. We call her Hermione Granger. I see a lot of elementry-school-Alena in her, which feels strange. Polina and Yeva are sisters. Yeva is a Barbie-doll. The girls are absolutely nasty to each other. What are little girls made of? Sugar and spice and sharp elbows, that's what.
Nastia, Katya, Olesia, Miss Alena, Yegor, Oles. Sasha B, Sasha H, Nicolas.
Ok, I need to gush a little bit about the kid with the juice-box, Yegor. He is the funniest kid I have ever met, America and Ukraine included. We call him Charlie Chaplin. He's only been learning English for about two weeks, so he basically mimes everything he needs to communicate. Every day during class, he comes up to me and taps me on the arm until I bend down to his level. Then he makes a big smile, pulls his hand down over his face, revealing a frown. Then he pulls his hand up, showing a smile again, back and forth. During break time yesterday, we were sitting at the table eating our snacks, and he tapped my arm again to get my attention. He proceeded to "unscrew" his thumb from his hand, badly hiding his thumb behind his palm, popped his thumb into his mouth, spit it out, and reattatched it. Bravo! So I showed him one where I stuck my finger in my ear, pretended that it went all the way through to my mouth, pressing my tongue against the inside of my cheek (Will Hoggan style). He got such a kick out if it, and tried to one-up me by doing another silent hand illusion. We went back and forth, trying to outdo each other with badly-performed tricks. Right as school ended today, he tapped me on the arm again. I bent down and he cupped his hands around his mouth as if to whisper "Toilet?" in my ear like he usually does. Instead, he kissed me on the cheek, smiled, and ran away. Haha, what a cute kid. Charlie Chaplin silent comedy, and a tricked kiss. Ukraine, we have a winner!