The assignment was for each student to write the recipe for the dish that I demonstrated the day before. As a group, they were allowed to consult with one another. In this particular group, I heard them talking about "Mexican recipe". I approached the group and asked: "What's "Mexican" about it?" Before I could change my question to "Or, rather, what do you think makes it a "Mexican" recipe"? one of the girls, a newcomer to the class, looked at me with her piercing eyes and said:
"You are so rude barging into us like that. You have no right to interrupt us!"
I took a deep breath and asked the rest of the group if I had the right and they all said
The rest of the class was suddenly quiet as if waiting for my next move. (Of course I was feeling red and hot but I tried all I could to remain calm). I got closer to the girl and whispered:
"As your teacher right now, I have that right."
I didn't dare elaborate for fear I might not be able to control my temper.
For the rest of the day, and night, I kept wondering: Was she right?
The following day, while the class, in groups, was preparing a recipe, I noticed a great change in the girl. She was friendlier, asked me questions about the procedure, even complimented me on my colorful chili apron.
I knew then that I had been right.