As soon as I stepped into Angel In Us (coffee shop) this afternoon, I was instantly on the radar of one very cute little girl. She was all over me (visually) like white on rice. After I ordered my coffee and sat down, a pattern emerged. She would walk over by me, look at me, and when I looked at her she would look away and then walk back to her mom. Repeat … This kept up for awhile. I offered a smile and a hello, but nothing in return.
She was showing off a bit – trying to get my attention and then acting nonchalant when she got a look from me. This pattern finally broke when I pulled out the all-powerful Korean word CUTE. This got her attention. She raced back to her mom and said ‘key yah wah’ (translation: “that crazy American just said I was CUTE Mom!”). Big smile from her and from her mom … they love compliments and being CUTE is the BEST!
Lucy (as I learned shortly thereafter) started warming up quickly. She is 5-years-old and attends a kindergarten close-by (I knew this because she was wearing her school uniform that has the name on it). But she was impressed that I ‘knew’ where she went to school. :o)
She understands English pretty well and stared talking (and by ‘talking’ I mean like 1-2 words or simple phrases) to me about the following:
- coffee beans (she brought one over for me to look at, and made sure I knew ‘no eat’)
- “this” (interpretation: WATCH ME!) As she jumped from chair to bench and back again.
- she counted to 10
- hot vs. cold coffee (we talked about the difference, she had cold coffee and I had hot)
- shoes I took a few pictures as she was shaking the sand out of them (from playing in the school yard I am guessing) much to her mother’s horror :o)
- Mom’s purse – we put on a little hand lotion and talked about how nice it smelled
Lucy drew me a few pictures (I LOVE kid art – the best!)
Left Picture: Lucy drew herself in the upper right corner, I am in the middle top. Notice my HUGE eyes (She told me mine were big. Even at 5 she is aware of this distinguishing feature on Westerners…that tells you something about the culture) There are flowers, and the letters E, T, M, and G.
Right Picture: 3 Rabbits. Her English name and Korean name.
By the end of our 45 minute exchange, Lucy lost all shyness and was ready to be my best friend. She loved it, I loved it, and her mom loved it (I’m a very cool commodity over here).