I just had to say goodbye to one of my classes. Not just "Goodbye, see you next time," either. Like "Goodbye, I`ll probably never see you again after March 25. Ever." Last English class of the year. Last English class that I`ll ever teach to Class 3-3. And I have to say it 13 more times.
It was sadder than I thought it would be. I cried a little and wrote my email address on the board.
The saddest part of the Peace Memorial Museum in Hiroshima was the tattered school uniforms on display. I thought of my students, in their goofy blue-and-white track suits, and I bawled. Those kids mean something to me.
I wasn`t as involved with them as I could have been. I wasn`t the super, above-and-beyond ALT that I thought I could be. But I did get to know them a little. I taught them some things, and they taught me a lot.
I`ll miss you, Eimei Junior High School. Most of all, I will miss those silly middle school students, laughing and chasing me in the hallways like I was a Beatle. Making fun of how I pronounce their names. The way they bust out with phrases like "Come on baby, cheese-u" and "I like women and money" out of nowhere.
A life of traveling is a life of saying goodbye. I always think of this song from The Muppets Take Manhattan when I say goodbye. I feel that the Muppets can say it better than I ever could.