Thursday, April 14, 2011

Why do I believe people?

My rush to get the car to the garage to have the brakes changed might have been a little less frenetic if I had known that I was going to spend the next four hours in the bloody place.

The first time of completion for the car was one and a half hours after I had brought the car there.  I duly went into the shopping centre, completed a few chore-like purchases and then settled down for a cup of tea and, more importantly, a decent sized table – and got on with my 3ESO letter marking.

When I finally got back to the garage my car hadn’t been touched; hadn’t even been moved from its parked position on the road.  My arrival catapulted the management into action who, once they had seen the scarred state of the discs, told me they would have to have the parts driven over from somewhere else and that my car would be ready by eight o’clock.

This time my visit to the shopping centre took in dinner and I managed to complete the marking of the set of papers.  Something at least came out of it!

My car was actually ready and, after paying a surprisingly large sum of money I was free to drive it home.

Unsurprisingly I was shattered when I finally made it back to the house and a “little lie down” soon changed into a full night’s sleep – which was a good thing.

I cannot truly say that I feel refreshed this morning as this is week 13 of an educationally unjustifiable term and, with a resolution which I can only deplore, the school staunchly refutes, but its general attitude, the idea that this is the penultimate day of term!
The chaos of “Nano Day” where our sixth formers took groups of pupils to explain the wonders of the nano world actually managed to work in my favour because with the reduced number of pupils that I had for “Current Affairs” I was able to justify letting the kids have some study time for the examinations facing them in the last days of term and I was able to get on with the much more congenial task of reading about the more extreme protagonists in the murky (though often brightly coloured) world of Abstract Expressionism in the 1950s.  Don’t tell me that I don’t know how to have fun!

The weather, though hot and stuffy, is depressingly negative with harsh light reflecting from threatening clouds which look ready to unleash a deluge.  In many sense I couldn’t care less; my attention is more taken up with the weather in islands off the coast of Africa rather than the Iberian Peninsular!

Andrew and Stewart are back in the UK and I only hope that they have not drained the islands of their share of sunshine for we poor deprived dwellers on the Mediterranean coast.
Today is the day that I draw up a list of the electronic equipment that I will need (together with the adaptors and leads) to make any fairly short holiday a gadget success.  I now have a USB plug that has prongs for whatever part of the world that one finds oneself in.  I have enough USB leads to sell them by the kilo and it is only with the toothbrush and the camera that I need to pack a charging station. 

How times change, especially from my first visit to Spain and Tossa de Mar at the age of seven when not one of the electronic things that I am going to take with me had been invented!  But we was ‘appy gov’!

This evening has been notable for my not eating the worst tortilla I have ever been served in a restaurant.  This crime was perpetrated in the Gavá shopping centre just off the motorway.  Sympathy was expressed by the waiter but no material compensation offered, so that is another restaurant that we can cross off our list.

One would have thought during a time of economic crisis that attention to service and quality might have been something in the front of the minds of owners of places for which there are ready alternatives!

The trip to the centre was fundamentally to get some anti-mould paint to try and counteract the inevitable dampness that one gets this near to the sea.  I enlivened the buying experience by buying a new toilet seat.

The en suite bathroom has bath, sink, toilet and bidet in a postmodern excreta brown.  In a desperate attempt to bring a little lightness into the cramped gloom I have ignored the “colour” scheme and gone for an adventurous white on the basis that “every little helps” and it does make a difference!

Packing of the small case seems to have gone by the board this evening – fixing the toilet seat was much more anyone had the right to expect and I am exhausted with my achievement!

One working day to go.

Tomorrow (the last day) makes no concessions to finality at all.  We work until the bitter end.  In my case almost to the bitter end: Friday is my early finish and I am not staying one nano second more than I have to.

Sooner or later the reality of leaving Barcelona at 6 in the morning is going to strike me: working backwards, we will have to be in the airport at 4 in the morning, leave the house by 3.30 in the morning and get up at 2.30 in the morning.  Sunday is going to be an interesting day!

I shall rely on Toni’s paranoia to ensure that I am dragged bodily from my slumbers to make all the deadlines.

I hope.

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