Sunday 21 January 2024

2024 Weeknote 3

It's been really cold all week, proper January weather with bright skies, hazy streets in the morning and lots of scraping required to get into the car. On one day this had to occur both inside and outside. I think I have probably spoiled the seal on my car with the roof bars I added for toting my kayak around.

Still, the afternoons are starting to get lighter and it's made for some colourful sunrises and sunsets, including this one from the back garden on Friday when I made it home before it got dark - a rarity at this time of year. 

It was my busier work week this week and there was a parents' evening, the briefing I give every other week and a staff meeting, on top of all the usual. So work was a bit of a grind but I have very much enjoyed hanging out with my team. The office is busier now that we have a trainee teacher and a new staff member, and on Friday we were all there and it was lovely to debrief and tell funny stories about the week. 

I had an online interview for the Masters I applied for which turned out to be considerably less formal than I was expecting; I hadn't really done any prep for it until the night before, which also happened to be post-parents evening and so I was a bit nervous that I might show myself up. It is Oxford, after all. But the interviewers were very friendly and asked lots of questions that proved quite easy to answer, so I am feeling quite hopeful. I should know by the time next week. It works out as 20 days out of school and, on top of the exam work and another project that may or may not be in the works, I am realising that this is not conducive to working in school full time. I am in such a dither about taking some time out because I like so much about my current job and I know I'll be able to drop the things I don't like; perhaps this is a little message to me from the universe that I don't have to hate something to stop doing it; that I can leave on a high note; that doors stay open even when we choose to walk through others. 

Fully leaning into my midlife crisis BTW. 

I've continued listening to The Witness Wore Red on audiobook this week, I am really enjoying it. I've carried on reading the short ghost stories in Winter Spirits and have about four left to go, but I've just checked a Karen Maitland out of the library so I might dig into that and save the other ghost stories for next winter. I finished the front and collar of the garter stitch jumper I'm making for my friend Char whose partner has just had their baby - two weeks early, so this is good timing on my part. Just the sleeves to go. 

I went to a really thought-provoking lecture by Ilan Pappe who was speaking about Palestine and its history, or (more specifically and controversially) the abuse of its history for the purposes of colonisers, over hundreds of years. This lecture was booked over a year ago and it is pure serendipity that it should come at this time of such rage and horror in that part of the world. There were lots of Opinions. The woman behind me at one point literally started clawing the desk. He wasn't what you'd call balanced, but then he didn't even pretend to be. The most interesting thing for me was the link he drew between the situation and both migration and the British Empire. This is what I love about a history lecture - I'll go and they will spin out a thread unknown to me, and yet when I pull on it I can see how it links to all of these other threads that I do know about. It's like spending a long time inspecting a spider web close up and then slowly realising that the web is connected to others that stretch as far as the eye can see. Something like that.

Today I went to the gym, then to do my marking at Starbucks, where I got to fuss a big softy of a labrador who flumped against my legs to allow for more fussing. So it has been a good day. 

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