What? ELS went into bankruptcy?! All of the staff and the teachers lost their jobs suddenly?! ELS, an English language school, went out of business last month. That was sudden and sad news. I was a student at the school in Nagoya for a month last March.
I hadn’t visited the school for a half year since I finished my course. I went there to see teachers and staff on next-to-last day. Most of the posters had already been peeled out from the wall, many books and DVDs were stacked on the counter, some rooms had many cardboard boxes and garbage bags, and the staffers were bustling about for moving here and there, when I arrived at ELS. The school wasn’t what it used to be…
I got depressed to have seen the piteous state, but something made me feel much better. I heard that some teachers tried to keep having classes privately for their students, and most teachers and students didn’t look so down. In addition, I was able to see one of my ex-classmates and some people I have met before there, and enjoyed talking to them. Moreover, I got wonderful news that they were planning for having a self-directed learning English group at that time.
They’ve invited me to the group. I promised to join them and was about to leave, when I saw a toy of an elephant at the window. The toy elephant moves its nose, ears, neck and tail slowly by the solar power. I used to have coffee in the morning and to have lunch seeing the elephant moving under the sunlight…I loved the place and the elephant…
The self-directed learning English group was named Conversation Club. The organizers have decided to have the club on Thursdays basically. Thursdays!? Oh, no…I have a class at a university every Thursday…But one of them emailed me last Tuesday and they would have a meet next day. I was surprised to have heard the place where they were going to have the club. It was ELS! I thought it had already disappeared.
I felt sad when I arrived at the school last Wednesday because the chairs were about to carry out. The movers were working hard inside. Every room was going to be empty and everything looked chaos.
In the middle of the mess, I found the elephant! It was almost thrown away as a junk! I’ve rescued it and decided to bring it home. About ten people came to the club that day, (We had our ex-academic director, too!) and we enjoyed talking in English and a game. I was able to meet new people there and was stimulated by their motivation.
ELS has vanished, but my memories of days at the school (until I got senile) and friendship of my friends and teachers will never disappear! By the way, the elephant is now relaxing at my home. I’ve named it Elzo!