End of Term, but More Disappointment

As of today, I am an officially qualified Teacher of English to Speakers of Other Languages – yes indeed: I now have my passport to the nations.  But I’m not really celebrating.

This last month has been a really good one for me – I’ve been enjoying myself, responding well to the enforced discipline, and so on – and above all, I’ve been full of hope, since I found a FANTASTIC job to apply for and did well in my interview and everything.  I really felt that this was my turning point – one year on from leaving NZ, after a crap 12 months.  But no.  I didn’t get it, and I have no idea why.

[they must have had some absolutely shockingly amazing applicants, that’s all I can say]

So everything has fallen down again.  Yes, I now have an actual skill, but my sense of hope and purpose have disappeared.  At least it’s the end of term: tomorrow I’m off to Devon for a fortnight of gardening and not having to care about anything 🙂

Beautiful Things From This Week

It’s been a very aesthetically-pleasing last few days.  Here are some highlights:

– Walking down Shandwick Place, I saw a very dignified, well-dressed, middle-aged chap coming towards me, beautifully turned out in pristine business shirt & tie, navy jacket, and TIGHT PINK CORDUROYS!!  Reminded me of having to find something out of the lost property box at school if you spilt something all over you …

– Coming up from the Princes Street Gardens, on the tarmac path at the St John’s end, an old lady was sitting on the floor, ripping loaves of bread apart for the birds, with two bowls full of cat food laid out beside her.

– Walking past my beloved Dagda, I looked in and chanced to see 4 Koreans around the window table, looking for all the world (this is my impression) as if they were relatively new to the country and trying to ‘get’ pub culture – they had all the trappings (pub, pints, nuts & all), but looked very uncomfortable.

– Walking along the Crags path, with the cliff-face to my right, and realising that the noise that kept attracting my attention was the amplified echo of my own shoes on the stone.

– Finding a street in Edinburgh where each side of the road is actually a different address – one side is Pitlochry Place, the other is Carlyle Place.  Rather awkward when trying to find your friends’ house …

– Being passed on the way home by a chap on a bike with his toddler (18months ish) on a seat behind him.  He then went by two girls, walking towards me, who (the moment the bike had passed) descended into a torrent of baby-talk.  liddlewiddlebabywabyliddlehunnydahlingsweetiebabywaby

My Tinuviel

      I just want to point out that my girlfriend is wonderful.



I had a hard day yesterday, with thing after thing being launched from left-field to splat upon me, and by the time my TESOL stuff finished for the day (at about 8pm) I was far from gruntled.  My head was a mess and there was so much to do that I walked in the door and went straight to my desk.

But fortunately, Maria was in the flat – she’d decided to have a go at making a Lebenese dish (sorry, don’t know the name) that she misses – and so, over about an hour, she was able to thaw me out from my frost.  And by the time we said goodnight, I was a happy boy again, and had got all my work done too!

Possibilities, Possibilities

Not yet half way through my TESOL, and already some ‘what if’s and ‘maybe’s are popping up on the other side.


I’m applying for a job here, at St Mary’s Music School.  They need a part-time ‘house parent’ type person to look after the boarders (of which there are about 30), and since all the present staff are women, they kind of need a bloke.  So my hopes are fairly high.

Apart from hanging out with young people (which is right up my street, youngster like me), one of the main things that has got me excited about this is the possibilities it holds.  Really I want to be a writer, and this job would let me (it’s 20 hours a week), whilst paying me really well for doing the sort of thing I’d very happily do without being paid.

Plus I’m intrigued at the prospect of a job whereby you get paid, effectively, for spending the night somewhere else 🙂

hair dye fascism

Yeah, just wanted to say: why is it no longer socially acceptable for women under 60 to have grey hair?

I’m on a TESOL course at the moment, and there’s a girl in our class (I say ‘girl’, but of course I mean ‘woman’) who is showing the tell-tale inch of greyish roots.  This is not allowed.  She must go for a touch up.  NOW.  How dare she have genes that pop a few white hairs into the mix!

Everything in me wants her to grow them out and just be at peace with it.  Why not?  It is true that she would probably no longer be mistaken for a 17 year-old, but why do we have to perpetuate the myth that we MUST look younger than we are anyway?  It seems like the hair-dye industry (amongst many others) is based on a foundation of fear-based lies, and it’s just BALLS!!

I am 25.  May I look 25.  When I am 40, may I look it (even 42 will be fine), and learn how to be the BEST 40 year old EVER!!!

Age is not evil, neither is ageing.  Come on kids, don’t let the fascists win!