i arrived at class early.
my heart sank as i realized the teacher was 100% hard-ass. blonde hair tied back, tightly bunned. blond people scare me.
her thin drawn lips – her short-squat posture – were reminiscent of Israeli teachers in the past… enough to make me wince at the thought of speaking Hebrew in this class, ever.
first impression: bad.
then it got worse.
she called for 9 students to come to the middle of the class to be a part of a simulation.
all i could think was ‘don’t pick me, don’t pick me, don’t ruin this for me…’
i counted slowly as one by one 9 students went up… 9, without me.
they were simulating a negotiation, and debating back and forth.
then i heard it. my heart leapt. i’d know that accent anywhere.
he was debating with the others in the simulation, patient with himself, confident, despite his accent, despite once in a while pausing to think and gather his words…
i couldn’t help but stare in awe. he was British. he was speaking up.
i walked up to him after class.
– hi. when did you get here?
– two days ago…
– and… and you felt ok participating like that?
– yeah, sure… you just gotta do it. didn’t i sound alright?
for the rest of the night, he was my hero.
and if he could do it, what should stop me?