Monday 31 December 2018

2018: Part 4


The first part of October was pretty miserable, although I managed a weekend away in Portsmouth to celebrate my friend Zoe's birthday. We went clubbing. I wore false eyelashes. It was fun.

The rest of it was just the grind of work. I really struggled, particularly with the last few days - thank goodness we broke up on a Wednesday. I went straight off to Hampshire for a mini spa break with Mother Hand and that sorted me right out.

Most of half term was spent doing housey things. Chutney. Knitting. Picking curtain fabric. I went to Wells to have lunch with my old work friend Kaff and we had a wander around the outside of the cathedral. An impressive place.


I started the month by heading back to Llandudno for the final day of my internship. I went for an extra day (just as well, since there are no trains to Llandudno on Sundays in the winter) and visited Conwy Castle and the Tudor house, and had dinner at Dylan's with the other trainers. Good fun.

It was great to be back at the school and see how excited they were to share what they'd been doing.

After the work excesses of the previous months, November felt like a rest. Exam board work abated, finally, for the first time since May, although I still had to write some training and record a feedback event (very weird, speaking into a microphone at my computer non-stop for 60 minutes). I ran a training event for some primary teachers in a sister school, visited another sister school with a view to supporting them, went to another history lecture and generally tried to catch up on a term's worth of neglect in my department. I think I managed it.

I went to the opening of the Bath Christmas markets with my old colleagues, as usual, and to the English national Ballet performing Swan Lake with Parpy Jo. I went to see Six in Southampton with my friend Vanessa and had dinner with my old colleague Paul. And right at the end of the month, the new sofas arrived. Win!


The wind down to Christmas began with a visit to Hampton Court with year 11 - a wonderful day, in spite of the torrential rain we had at the start. My first PGCE student in years, George, finished his first placement and I met the second one, Sonia, who will join me after Christmas, thus making my department a little less lonely. We had a Team Hums night out painting pottery, and a staff Christmas night out drinking (apparently) cocktails. You know all this because I've been frantically over-sharing for the past couple of months, so I won't go into too much detail.

I posted this clip of me making a snow angel in Pritt sticks on Twitter and it got over 150 likes. Weird.

After breaking up for Christmas, I did my best to clear the decks of work but failed miserably. Mother Hand came to stay on the Friday and we spent Christmas at Sib Z's. Then, on Boxing Day, we flew off the Vegas (thankfully out of Heathrow - no mysterious holiday-ruining drone for us). And I think you're all caught up on what we've been doing here, as I frantically over-share right up to the wire to get my 127 posts. I think I need to let it go now I have reached 10 years of having the same post count. Well, I either need to let it go or do it properly and post all year. If I did a week note every week of the year and blogged every day in November I'd be at 80ish posts without even trying. I think I remind myself of this every year.

So, how was 2018? Well, busy. I'm always saying it's a busy year. This year has been busy to an entirely new degree. I was excited to think I could make the exam board work my only work, since they were paying me like a (not terribly well-paid but well enough) full-time job, but it never occurred to me that that was because they were asking me to work the hours of a full-time job, only in the space of 4 months, while working another full-time job. The learning curve was steep. There wasn't a lot of time for myself or for Mr Z. I think it will be better in 2020, as long as I can be a little better organised, but who knows? I suspect I'll be back here writing a similar thing this time next year.

But there you go! This was all exactly what I wanted, career wise. It has been good, though educational, to spend this year doing.

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