August 15, 2009


Today was my last day teaching English at Wall Street.

I have been blessed to spend almost every evening for the last seven months with this institution. I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to join this community of dedicated students and happy staff. It truly has been my favorite job ever. All of my students want to study. And they usually are quite educated and have a great deal to teach me.

One of my best blessings in Manta is my coworker Ruth. She is this short, bubbly, silly, chubby, loving, laughing Belgium girl with a flemish accent. She hired me giggling, helped me teach grammar that I'd not studdied since the seventh grade, aided me when I needed to sort something out with our boss... And, best yet, was my friend. She listened to what was happening in my life and gave her helpful opinion. She checked in with me when I needed a bit of accountability. And was always present and smiling when I arrived at work. What a blessing!

At the beginning of almost every class, I ask my students what is happening in their lives. And if they say nothing positive, I directly ask "What is one thing good that is happening in your life?" With certainty this changes their mood and the tone of our next hour of class together. I LOVE that I have liberty at Wall Street to guide discussions, to give opinions, and, most of all, show that I care for my students.

One student, Luis, is the chief of quality control for a tuna company. This company provides for international companies including Bumble Bee. He has told me interesting stories about his job, and I have gratefully learned that the standards of hygene are quite high. (whew!)

Another, Pautricio, is a police officer. He works with car accidents with fatalities, and presents the situation to the judge when it must be legally decided whom is at fault. Pautricio has helped me understand much about the police system here - More about Wall Street, Manta, Crime, and Police soon...

I have a few younger female students who tell me about their boyfriends. We talk about what it means for a man to show a woman respect. Sometimes I am told that my students were beat by their parents. We talk about love, and about the affects of parental abuse. Some tell me about school, and I encourage them in their study habits. Some, (Bolivar!) talk of faith, and we discuss Spanish Christian musicians, or the country of Israel, or how to share our faith with others. And we always talk about our families, our days at work or school, and what we did last weekend.

Bernardo is in a whole other class. He saves my brain. Unfortunately we have not worked together a great deal. I always enjoy our discussions as he is so knowledgeable about the... whole world. Today we were talking about the ethnic minority group at the end of the silk route in China. I've already forgotten the name of this group, but I do recall learning of their opression and suffering. Thank God to have Bernardo to discuss politics and other world happenings. If not for him and another friend Juan Carlos, my brain might just rot!

Today was my last day.
My final student was Cesar. He is a 24-year-old doctor at the public hospital in Manta. He is mild mannered and has a smile in his eyes. Over the last seven months he has shared his heart regarding his (now former) girlfriend. Their relationship was not healthy. I hurt for him when he shared of their experience together. I encouraged him in his value. And we discussed what it meant to have a healthy relationship, and to stand up for our values. Today I asked him about his decision to end the relationship, and he was at peace. And clearly happy! I am so glad to see his growth as a person. I will shortly gift him one of my favorite books, Love and Respect. (But in Spanish.) I'll tell you more about this book later.... I have already gifted over 20 copies of it in Ecuador!

Back to Cesar - When class is over, I said that I will miss all of my friends here at Wall Street. He said he will likewise miss me and my antics - a lot. And I cried.

God is good.


  1. Hi Rosie, it´s so sad that we couldn´t expend more time in Wall Street Institute, but i have learned a lot of pronunciation in your classes. Thanks for your good work teaching english. By the way the people which are being opressed by the chinese goverment are the uyghur. GBU Rosie, we´ll be on touch!

  2. José -
    Thank you for your words!
    It was a delight to teach you. I hope to be back in Manta in about three weeks to visit and teach a social club (likely about my adventure in Colombia.)

    Uyghur. No guarantee I will remember this, but thank you anyhow!
    Blessings, hon -