Once upon a time there was a teacher who took his writing seriously and wrote conscientiously and studiedly each day. But it has now been raining for three entire days and there is just so much that the academic can interpose between the elements and a sensitive soul visibly dissolving in the continuous downpours.
Just as a variant on the watery weariness at lunchtime today we had a taste of the Apocalypse with the sky turning an ochre yellow and Barcelona disappearing beneath a smog-like blanket of dirty water. The thoughts of my kids in a Drama class immediately turned to eschatology but that was more a reflection of the unconscious queenliness that affects the little prima donnas I attempt to teach than a realistic assessment of what the atmosphere might or might not be doing. I downgraded the eerie and entirely disconcerting phenomenon with an airily dismissive explanation involving reflected light on dust in the atmosphere.
What I actually wanted to do was tear tiny cambric handkerchiefs to pieces in frantic displacement activity, or take ostentatious photographs with my underused iPhone 5. But the class was difficult enough to keep on task at the best of times without having the End Days luridly play themselves out behind the sedate classroom windows, so I chose to downplay and redirect rather than give myself to the beckoning Dark Side!
The most noticeable development of the past few days has been the lure of the famous. Having been tempted by the chance of proximity to sporting greatness, I have booked flights to the UK for the weekend to participate in the festivities attendant on the promotion of Cardiff City to what used to be the old First Division. Sunday will see the City of Cardiff give a triumphal hooray to the achievement of the team and I will be there to experience something which the city has been waiting for the last half century.
On a far more prosaic, but personally more important level, I have also arranged for an opticians appointment in Tesco for the Saturday of my short stay. I have tried to find a reasonable price for a replacement for my rapidly aging glasses but the price is indeed beyond rubies in this country and Tesco seem to offer a much more reasonable alternative to the money grubbing bastards trying to suck my money away in the immediate vicinity of my abode.
I am half resigned to discover that with all the thinning, lightweight, photo chromatic, progressive shenanigans that I demand for my glasses nowadays that the price will steadily climb until it is indistinguishable from the extortion on this part of the continent. I hope not. I put my trust in the ruthless competitive edge that sharp and heartless capitalist scorched-earth economics gives pseudo-monopolistic juggernauts because, after all, you know it makes sense and every little helps.
Meanwhile another sacred cow is mooing its way amongst us. Yet another spate of examinations is about to unleash its deadening misery. I am having to write some of the bloody things and then there will be all the marking – but at least I will be spared the true triple-misery of having to go to meetings about the damn things as well. I have, I know I have, to be thankful for what are not in any way small mercies.
Talking of mercilessness, the nine or ten hours of meeting stretching over Friday evening and Saturday morning have left a residue of remembered misery and present resentment that are hindering the implementation of whatever it is that is supposed to be happening next term. The situation is rapidly heading towards chaos and the suggestion that people come in and work for an extra two weeks at the end of term has staggered people!
I am beyond shock, and I have experienced numerous knee-jerk twinges when the knee begins to bend to whatever deities there might be for bringing my career in the classroom to an end within what can comfortably be termed a matter of weeks rather than months. Technically, of course, there are indeed months (in the plural) to go – but we are talking single figures of weeks and that is something which takes the tension out of the shoulders!
Tomorrow is a “light” day, though I do have to complete my sixth form marking and make sure that I have done my bit to ensure that the examination for 3ESO is done so that it can be sat while I am in the UK.
It’s all go!