Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.
The girl is drilling her classmates, a circle of international students sharing at a table at the university food court. She wears black hipster glasses and a puffy coat. Her notes are in order. There are young men–one with a Mohawk–a few other young women, one with a stocking cap topped with a fucshia ball of twine. They nibble, then review, they laugh, begin again.
“Mmm!” The girl exclaims, referring to her list of vocabulary. “Em. Em. Em. Mmmm.” She insists that everyone repeats the sound, and they comply with various levels of annoyance, rolling their eyes. She tries again to encourage participation, this time with an encouragement that another girl finds amusing.
At one more unenthusiastic reception, the leader halts and turns to her meal. The students eat in near quiet, papers rustling around sandwiches, utensils scraping on Styrofoam. Then as they crumble their empty containers, they praise their drill sergeant, this time smiling, nudging her, trying to get her to grin—Mmm, they note, mmm, mmm!