Why, Carrie-teacher, WHY?

I am a vegetarian.  I have been for most of my life.  Well, I should say that I have been a pescetarian for most of my life.  Normally, it’s not something I think about.  I don’t eat meat. Big deal.

In Korea however, it is positively freakish.  Every day at lunch I am subjected to pitying glances.

“Poor Carrie-teacher,” my co-workers say, shaking their heads. “How sad that you can’t enjoy this delicious blood sausage or these fabulous fried entrails.”

I appreciate their concern but it’s not necessary.  I don’t miss meat.  I barely remember what it tastes like.

Being a veggie does mean that occasionally I have weird things for lunch.  Last week for example, I had quail eggs and kimchi for lunch because even the rice had meat in it.

I keep granola bars in my desk. 😀

I have avoided mentioning it to my students.  I don’t want to be chased by an angry parent because their child has suddenly decided to stop eating meat!

And so I was astonished today when nearly every Grade 6 I met asked me about being vegetarian.  (I teach 372 Grade 6s by the way…)

“Why, Carrie-teacher,” they would demand, sounding horrified.  “WHY?”

This was usually followed by:

“Why no meat but you so big?”

Charming little hellions.

Eventually I enlisted the help of a co-T to help solve the mystery.

It turned out that in their health class today, there had been a section  in their textbook on vegetarians.  One of the questions was “Why would someone choose to be a vegetarian?” The health teacher didn’t know.  She simply couldn’t comprehend why anyone would voluntarily choose to not eat meat.  And so she told them to ask me.

In a strange way, it did fit into our lesson…  We were learning “I want to…/ I don’t want to…”  My students kept saying “I want to eat meat but Carrie-teacher does not want to eat meat.”  And then they would laugh hysterically.

I’m not sure why my dietary habits were side-splittingly funny but since they were using the target language, I didn’t mind being the butt of the joke. 😀


About Carrie K

Teacher, writer, traveller. Slightly neurotic. Overly talkative. Loving life. You can also follow me on Twitter: kimchigirl72
This entry was posted in food, Korea, Korean schools, Life, teaching in Korea, Travel, Uncategorized, Work and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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