Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Midnight Mission (TMM)

On Saturday November 22nd & Sunday November 23rd, 35 LSI students & friends joined me at The Midnight Mission (TMM) to help with their Thanksgiving prep. Thanksgiving is the busiest day of the year for them, serving over 2,300 meals on that day alone. The mission needed dedicated volunteers to help them with the food preparation. We were more than happy to lend them a hand!

On Saturday, we peeled and chopped yams from 10am-1pm. Harris, one of the volunteer coordinators, gave us a personal tour of the mission before we got started. We learned about the history and purpose of TMM, how they've been helping people get off the streets and build their lives back again. TMM has been operating for 100 years now and they've only missed one day of serving meals! Later, our group enjoyed a wonderful lunch at Urth Caffe minutes from TMM.

On Sunday, we helped chop vegetables & prepare lots of turkey! One of the TMM assistants took us on a tour after we finished. It was a wonderful experience overall. It inspired many to continue with volunteer work and also appreciate the little things in life we often take for granted. We had such fun and positive energy throughout the two days we volunteered. Looking forward to scheduling more volunteer events the next coming months.

Caroline - LSILA Teacher

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

LSI Halloween Party 2014

Every year LSI throws a Halloween Party for hundreds of international students, and it is always so much fun to see how creative the students can get with their costumes.  
This year, there were 4 categories for the costume contest: Most Creative, Funniest, Scariest, and Best Couple/Group. The Best Couple Costume went to a male and female student who dressed up as a kind of zombie couple in wedding outfits. They were both really scary looking. I think they even freaked out a couple of the judges when they did their walk in front of the judging panel. It was a lot of fun! 
During the party, students had many chances to win prizes like one-of-a-kind LSI Halloween t-shirts and gift cards.  We also had a special performance from a Japanese student representing the LSI-Los Angeles campus. He did a dance impersonation of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” The audience cheered and clapped in response to this student’s cool performance.  
Of course, we all enjoyed the all-you-can-eat buffet of delicious Japanese food. After dinner, the performance, and the costume contest, it was time to dance the night away as the DJ played hits for LSI students gathered on the dance floor. For our international students, Halloween is always a special opportunity to experience one of the most interesting holidays in American culture.

Monday, November 3, 2014

#BestGhostStory winner

1300 Federal Ave. Suite #013. Private room apartment, cheap, and near school. Luckily I found it in Craigslist. I start moving today. I hope everything is ok. 

(bell rings - someone opens the door)
“Come in, Carla! Just help yourself, ok? Make yourself at home, I’m really busy today. I am going to attend an event,” says the landlord.
Carla pulls her luggage inside the house.
“Time to go! Alright, whatever happens don’t open the room beside you, the room is connected to my clinic, so I don't want you to bug my work and my stuff in there” says the landlord.
“Wait... What’s your job, and what clinic?” asks Carla
“I’m a beautician and  that’s my beauty clinic. Alright, if something happens, call me. I have already put my number on the fridge, Bye! Have a good night!" says the beautician. 
(the door slams)

“Okay. First night, alone. I have no clue about this place. And why is it so hot inside?” says Carla to herself, feeling confused.
Carla takes a shower.  She is washing her hair when suddenly she feels her hair coming out. It separates easily from her head to her feet, “Whose hair is it? it’s long…...No!” Quickly Carla leaves the shower, takes a towel, but suddenly all the long hair is gone. She tries to clean the steam on the mirror when suddenly she sees a woman with long hair in the mirror. Carla is shocked, so she tries to look at the bathroom sink.
“Go! This is not your place!” yells the woman.

Carla calls the landlord, but there's no answer. She feels really tired. She lays on the bed trying to sleep, leaving the table lights on. She falls asleep. Suddenly, she feels her hair being pulled by someone. Someone touches her face.
“Help! Help!” A noise comes from another room.  They punch on the wall so hard.
“Arrrgh arrrgh, my face, stop with my hair...what are you doing?!?" A girl is screaming loudly in another room, and the others don’t stop pounding on the wall.
Carla cannot move her hands, feeling constricted. Carla feels someone pulling her hair fiercely and stretching her face. Suddenly the pulling hand stops, changing to strangle her neck. Carla is choking and coughing, everything is dark. She tries to reach the table when suddenly she feels another hand there.
“ARGHHHHH!” Carla screams. She opens her eyes and sees her room with the lights on.
“Something is wrong with this house!!!" Carla says to herself.

Carla goes outside of her room. She looks at the door of the next room. She grabs the knob... and it’s unlocked. She opens the door, walks slowly into the darkness; an old lamp is giving an obscure light. She walks slowly with bare feet and feels a lot of hair in her way. The room smells putrid, and she looks at a mannequin face with the ...
“What’s that? It’s not plastic... It seems like real skin. No! No! Impossible!” Carla says to herself. 
Carla continues walking when suddenly she crashes into something: a big wood block, its height half of hers. It seems like a big chest. Carla opens the chest and she sees a woman, cold, the same one she saw in the bathroom mirror. She’s lying inside the chest with long hair and a few sutures on her face.
“Oh my God!” Carla fiercely runs back to the door - she opens it and a woman – the beautician – is already there to stop her in her tracks.
The beautician speaks slowly: “Have you met my daughter? She is beautiful now, isn't she? I don't think she needed to commit suicide because of her face deformity. I can make her beautiful! Like now! Well, I think she will be very happy today, cause she will get a new wig made of your beautiful hair and she will have your beautiful face.”

The End

By Caroline Sorta, TOEFL - LSILA  #BestGhostStory