Sunday, October 31, 2004

Before I write anything about my holidays, I will just alert you to the shortage of lard that is occuring in our continent. Peruse the shelves at your local supermarket to discover the extent of this calamity! Yikes!

ps - if your local purveyor of lardy products has some available, please can you buy some for me... my pastry's suffering!

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

School trip to Greece - hot but good.

Guide camp training weekend - great fun but knackering.

Now off to enjoy a couple of days without having to look after reams of kids - bliss.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

It's been the penultimate day of teaching before the half-term holiday. It's been a day for escaping the villge and getting into the big wide world where there are shops that sell books and CDs and toiletries and bikinis that actually fit. It's been an evening for buying sandwiches that are reduced from £2.50 to 10p, for eating far too many confectionary products, for going to the pub. It's a night for collapsing on the bed, dreaming of foreign climes and tomorrow's trip to Greece.

If I don't make it to a pooter for the next couple of weeks, you know where I'll be: living life, not writing about it. Have fun...

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Have spent the evening washing clothes, answering the phone and wading through my inbox. What an exciting life I lead. Perhaps I should feature in an advert to recruit teachers... how could anyone want to turn down the chance to have such evenings of thrills and spills?! Blimey.

To be fair, I suppose that it was quite productive. It still doesn't make it any more exciting though.

Sometimes things don't quite work out as you plan them, but sometimes that's ok, and what you end up with is far better than the original scheme.

My holiday plans for this coming half-term have been very much like this. I have a week in Greece with school (looking at ruins and temples, I suspect, and mebbe the odd galss of ouzo too) and then three days on Guide camp/holiday (teaching the little darlings how to put up tents, in preparation for next summer's big camp). After all that excitement, the original plan was to escape to the country for a couple of days with the Boy Wodner. I was looking forward to sitting reading in front of an open fire, or mooching through autumnal woodland, kicking up leaves and getting back in touch with my inner-child, which has been sadly missing this term.

Some things just aren't meant to be.

I was phoned at lunchtime today by the lady at the holiday company to confess that there had been a double-booking and would I mind changing the dates if they lowered the price to make up for it? A few frantic phonecalls later and we re-arranged for a weekend just before Christmas, with a 50% discout to make it even better. Wooh!

My braincell's making a bid for freedom via my ears. I wish it would stop: I don't have time to go off chasing it.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Forgot to say:

Tonight I got an NUS card for the first time in many years. Discounts, here we come!!

A happy three hours spent dyslexing always make Tuesday into a fine day, even if I have to faff about on a netball court beforehand. What's made it even better is the discovery of a programme on the radio called The Music Goes Round. It's presented by a bloke who sounds just like he looks: old, cheery, happily knowledgeable. Trying to work out the connection between each of the tunes he plays is enough to keep my braincell from stagnating, and also acts as an incentive to get home quickly: if I'm not back before 7.30 I have to endure The Organist Entertains!

Life is silly busy here - I'm off to Greece in a school trip in 4 days' time, so I've planned out the week hour by hour. Although I can (just!) fit all my commitments in, I've certainly got little time free for marking. Waaah!

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Back from a delightfully loungey weekend in Cheltenham with the Boy Wonder. 'Twas good. We at lunch today at The Beehive in Montpellier Villas: the food was excellent - definitely somewhere to go back to! We then went home and made shortbread (luscious) and pizza dough (stringy and sticky, not to mention very thick when cooked). Now I feel stuffed. So much for my healthy eating drive!

Saturday, October 09, 2004

Just back. Very sleepy but good. I love Durham.

Friday, October 08, 2004

Off now to Pink-Panther-ville:

Durham, Durham, Durham durham durham....

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Tomorrow I'm teaching all morning, then off to Durham after lunch accompanying Ian and three pupils. Ian's speaking at the Union Society - This House believes that your A-levels are not worth the paper they're written on - and I've been press-ganged into being Sherpa and general yak herder for the trip. Apparently we have a parking space reserved on Palace Green, so I shall be off to trample across Castle's croquet lawn before anyone can stop me. Bwah-ha-ha-ha!!

Why is it, on the day that we have potato wedges and garlic mayonnaise for tea, that my will-power suffers a sudden breakdown and I eat as though I've not seen food before?

It's a good job I'm not due to snog anyone for the next 36 hours.

I was observed teaching today by one of the the senior managers in school. He was impressed by my lesson, althuogh I'm not sure why as it covered topics such as 'dumping people by text message' and 'gossip in the staff room'. Still, his comments made me smile.

Time to do some marking...

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

This is the first time I've sat down and taken "me time" since 8.30 this morning. School merged straight into D of E, into kit returns, into dinner in the House, into orchestra and now into duty night in the House.

I'm not, it has to be said, a great fan of Wednesdays.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

After an hour of devious schemeing, I've managed (hopefully) to get rid of the Guide DC job. All that's needed for this plan's success is for the "willing volunteers" to agree to becoming both volunteers and willing. I'm keeping my fingers crossed!

Have had a good day all round: my teaching has had a lot more sparkle; this afternoon's games session was passable; and dyslexing was great. All I've got to do now is tidy up and get some dinner before Kate arrives at 8.30pm to try and sort out my Guiding mess. I'm trying to give up being DC, but it's not going too well at the moment: I think they finally got the message at last week's division meeting, so I'll see what comes of tonight's discussions.

Better go and get the hoover out!

Monday, October 04, 2004

Wanky blogger - it's having a spaz and has published loads of my last post. Waaaah.

I'm still snot-ridden and suffering, but things have been much better today. My netball session was cancelled, I got my reports written on time, I've talked to the Boy Wonder* and have had my fingers tied in knots at string orchestra. Admittedly it's hard to type with my fingers making some masochistic cats-cradle, but it's been good to get the old braincell thinking again.

* Who's been out of the country for a week on a scuba diving course. Pah. It's alright for some.

Sunday, October 03, 2004

I am snot-ridden and sneezing. Whinge, whinge, moan.

Going back to bed was postponed in deference of seaching the net looking for amusing things. Over at Ordinary Morning, Melly has been posting videos. This one made me laugh more than most though.

I suddenly have three unexpected hours of freedom. I'd anticipated spending all day involved with an event for some of our feeder prep schools, but - after helping to smooth the arrival, signing-in and briefing session - I'm now free and facing the dilemma of what to do with myself. I think I might just go back to bed.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Have consumed too much wine to type, but am not too drunk to appreciate the beautiful mackeral pate or the opportunity to massage Ian's feet.

I suspect I won't appreciate it tomorrow.

Things that have amused me today, in no particular order:

* The boy who came up to me at the start of the lesson to apologise for his lack of homework, grovelling profusely and blaming it on a lost homework diary. I looked at him quizzically, noticed his mate starting to giggle manically, and broke the news that there wasn't any prep due in until next week and that his mate was having him on. I've not seen someone look simultaneously annoyed and embarrassed before, but it was a sight to behold.

* I covered a GCSE Classical Civilisations lesson for a colleague, and his set were researching housing in Pompeii on the internet. Having been on a Classics trip to Pompeii this year, I felt pretty confident about it all. As I arrived at the IT room, two of the boys were looking at a website about mobile phones. I told them that the Romans didn't have mobiles so they could stop that area of research, when one of them told me that instead of mobiles they used pottery cups on the end of a long piece of string. "What," I asked, "So they can call each other and go 'Hey, are you free? Let's go and throw some Christians to the lions'?" Unfortunately the deputy head, a proper Classicist, was walking through the computer room at this moment and looked slightly aghast. Luckily she didn't hear my comments about the frequency of the giant phallus at Pompeii, or I really would have been sacked.

* Can't think of another thing. Standing on the sidelines of an inter-House hockey match has numbed my fingers and my braincell. As my nose thaws, it's beginning to run and I'm risking snot in the keyboard at this rate. Better go and find some tissues...

Friday, October 01, 2004

Friday night's Guide meeting always fills me with joy. To be fair, it normally gives me a headache too, but they're just soooo great. We have two 14-year-old Young Leaders, and then twenty 10- and 11-year-old girls: they organise their own activities for at least an hour each week, working far better in groups than some of my oh-so-mature teenage pupils. Bless 'em, I love 'em all. Aaah.

The only problem with eating a slice of melon for breakfast is that you end up with juice running across your face and down your arms. Small price to pay, really.