61 CH61: How to improve?

    "One of the greatest pleasures of my life has been that I

    have never stopped learning about good cooking and good food."

    - Edna Lewis


    "Hey Delilah. Don't forget about the report, okay?"

    Delilah turned around and saw Aubree waving at her as she walked towards the exit of the office.

    She nodded. "Yeah, I'll continue it tomorrow. There are still some points that I haven't highlighted yet."

    Aubree just nodded before disappearing.

    Delilah quickly packed her things after shutting down her computer. She waved goodbye to those who passed by her cubicle.

    Shortly after, she was at the office lobby, with her phone in her hand.

    Instead of heading straight home, she was planning to go straight to her language class. She had just texted her father in the family group chat, saying that she's going to her class straight away.

    Few weeks ago, she had applied for a Korean Language class. Although she had attended once, she was still nervous. Probably because she still would not be able to learn much. Learning a new language was difficult for her.

    People say that it was easy. But she had argued that it depends on one's determination and will to learn. Even though she has the determination and will, she had to admit that it wasn't that strong. Learning a new language was something she wanted to add to her skill.

    The class was a few minutes drive from her office in one of the shopping centres in the city.

    Parking her car at a designated parking lot, she got out of her car and headed straight for the shopping centre. The class was on the second floor and she used the stairs to get there, instead of a lift. She thought maybe she could get a little exercise by climbing the stairs.

    Opening the door that leads to the class, she was greeted by the admin, who was manning the front desk. The place was similar to a school, albeit a private school or 'cram school'.

    Other than Korean language, they also offer language classes for Japanese, Arabic and Chinese.

    Nodding 'hello' to the admin, Delilah walked towards her class. Since it wasn't her first time, she knew where her class was.

    Entering the room on the left, she noticed that the class was crowded this time as well. Most of the students were those who were younger or more or less the same age as her.

    There were only a couple of males in the class. She presumed that either they were interested in learning or they were 'forced' to join the class by their girlfriends or wives.

    The class hasn't started yet. But it seems like everyone has already arrived except for the songsaenim [1].

    Delilah took a seat that was a couple of seats from the teacher's table. She did not want to sit in the front nor did she want to sit at the back.

    While waiting for the songsaenim, she reads her Korean notebook where the first lesson was to read hangul [2].

    She sighed. Although it was interesting learning the alphabets, it seems confusing as well. Especially when some of the letters can also be used for different letters. For example, one of the letters can be used for either 'r' and 'l'.

    Just as she attempted to practice her writing, the songsaenim arrived. The songsaenim was from South Korea herself. Her name was Kim Sanghe. She looked like she was in her late thirties. She was tall with a round face and fair skin with small eyes and nose.

    She was smiling as she walked to her desk. She then greeted the class, 'Annyeonghaseyo', which literally means, 'Hello'.

    After her students had greeted her back, she immediately started her class. She first revised back on the topics that they had learned during the first class, which was learning the hangul and the basic greeting words.

    The class was a two-hours class with a fifteen minutes break in the middle.

    Although they don't actually eat during the break, rather just drink, Delilah spent her breaks, just recalling the topics that they had learned. It was not because she was a diligent student. It was just that she needed more practice. She really was weak when it comes to learning a new language. Truth be told, she was weak in her own standard language.

    After the class was over, Delilah went to pack her things and said her thank you to her songsaenim.

    Leaving the school, she realized that she was getting hungry. She really needs some brain food at that moment.

    Fortunately, on the ground floor of the shopping centre, there were many food stalls being set up. She decided to buy her dinner at one of the stalls.

    Walking around, she finally settled on a Korean food stall.

    The tteokbokki [3] looked delicious. But it looked really spicy by how red it looked. She does not have the craving to eat spicy food at that moment. Studying the menu that was placed near the stall, she was surprised to see corn cheese being sold.

    It was not because it was difficult to make but rather, not many stalls would sell this. She did not know why.

    She decided to place her order for that and also some japchae [4]. Since there wasn't any place for her to sit and eat, she ordered her food to go.

    Few minutes later, she arrived at home with her two steaming food. She immediately went into the kitchen and placed her food on the dining table.

    She then went up to her room to take a shower.

    Once done, she went back to the kitchen. She took the take-outs from the plastic bag and began to open the cover. The food was still steaming hot, much to Delilah's delight.

    Before eating the japchae, she decided to eat the corn cheese since it's more delicious to eat it when it's hot.

    Scooping the corn, the cheese was stretchy as she pulled her spoon higher. The steam still came out from the food, indicating that it was still hot. She blew on the corn and took a bite. The corn was sweet and savory, giving out a heavenly flavour. It was loaded with butter mixed in it, making the taste more palatable and rich.

    She loved how the corn seems to burst into flavour as she chewed on them.

    Few minutes later, she cleaned up after herself, already done with her dinner. Cleaning the kitchen, she then went up to her room to sleep.

    The next day.

    Delilah was rearranging her papers into a neat pile when Aubree knocked on the wall of her cubicle.

    "Hey Delilah. Howard's here."

    Delilah turned around and nodded. She picked up the papers and her mobile phone and went out of her cubicle, heading straight for one of the meeting rooms. Aubree went back to her cubicle.

    Inside the meeting room, Howard was sitting alone, in front of his laptop. He was typing on his laptop, not noticing Delilah's knock.

    Delilah loudly cleared her throat. "Um, Howard?"

    Looking up, Howard looked surprised at first when he saw Delilah, as if he forgot that he had called for her. He then gave her a smile and gestured for her to sit.

    She took a seat across him and waited patiently as he finished off what he was doing.

    Soon after, Howard set his laptop aside and held out his hand. "Are those the reports that I requested?" he asked.

    Delilah nodded and handed him the papers.

    Howard immediately looked through the report, turning the pages numerous times.

    A few minutes later, the two went into a deep discussion. Delilah mainly talked about her opinions and reasons as to why she had changed some of the words. She showed Howard the little post-its that she had stuck on the reports, summarizing the words.

    The discussion took them nearly three hours. And when Howard finally stopped the meeting, the two went their separate ways. Delilah immediately went to lunch whereas Howard went straight to the other branch, since he had another meeting with another employee of the company.

    In the office cafeteria, Aubree was having her lunch, sitting at the table, together with Fawkes and Shazzy.

    The three of them looked up when Delilah had approached them, pulling out a chair for her to sit.

    "How was the little meeting?" Aubree asked.

    Delilah shrugged as she took out her lunch box from her lunch bag. "The usual," she said nonchalantly.

    Fawkes shook his head in bemusement. "I don't know how you two could spend hours in a meeting," he said. "What do you guys even talk about?"

    Delilah shrugged again. "This and that," she said. "And of course, knowing Howard, he likes to talk off-topic."

    Aubree laughed. "Yeah, he does," she agreed.

    "I've never been in a meeting with him before," Shazzy said softly. She was one of the newest employees in the Kang Company. She has been in the company for a few months now.

    Aubree, Delilah and Fawkes turned to her and said, "Be grateful that you haven't!"

    They all continued to talk while Delilah listened on as she ate. She does drop some comments in-between but that was it. It seems like she had a lot of things in her mind. Not only was she still thinking of the meeting but she was thinking of her language class.

    She sighed inwardly. 'How does one improve their language skill?' she thought to herself.


    [1] Songsaenim - Teacher in Korean (선생님)

    [2] Korean alphabets

    [3] Korean rice cakes

    [4] Sweet potato starch noodles
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