Words of warning and welcome:

This is very much my blog, so don't be surprised if this doesn't follow accepted patterns and norms. It is a place where I can be anonymous and honest, and I appreciate that.

It will deal with many things and new readers would do well to check out the "Story So Far" Page above this and the "New Readers" tag down there on the right. Although there's nothing too bad in here there will be adult language, so be careful. If you think this needs a greater control, please let me know. Thank you!

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Driving Away From Home

Okay, not entirely accurate title, in that there is no driving at all, but nevertheless vaguely indicative, in that the whole family now needs to relocate as the big fat reset button has been mashed, hard and repeatedly, since getting that call to interview last week.

Ah, Zinoviev, we hardly knew ye.
It was Tuesday, I was called to an interview in another county on the Thursday, the last day before the deadline in education to hand in your notice. Of course I went along, Tilly and I recognised that it was better to go down fighting like the working classes of Russia in the July Days than it was to surrender without a fight. I didn't expect much, Zinoviev and Kamenev would have been proud, and prepared accordingly. My lesson was good, but not flammable, and my presentation was ripped off one I did back in 2009 when I was last attempting to move jobs and ended up back at the place I started at - and the presentation was for somewhere else. I failed to get that job because the pres was too detailed and I likened my management style to Mussolini at a religious school. That was... not my finest hour. Though I defend my choice of example and my reasoning, it's just that most people aren't historians to the level I am and so usually unable to see past the whole Fascism = Death thing. Which is fair. I digress.

Apparently this is outstanding teaching. I hope that her
lecture at least uses Socratic questioning as a basis
for learning!
At the place itself it became apparent that I was the only candidate. Usually, in situations like that, schools cancel the interview. I was told that I was the strongest candidate and so they had decided to run with the day to give me a shot and for me to show them what I could do. They were in no hurry to appoint, they said, so there was no pressure. No, none at all to justify the amount of money and time that they would lavish on me as a single candidate for the job! As you already know, I lucked out. I liked the school and the school liked me. So they offered me the job with lots of lovely things to say about how they needed someone like me and how I'd said all the right things and how I was an outstanding teacher (something that's not been said to me since about 2008). This was all lovely and life-affirming and brilliant. But it was in another county, at the end of an hour and a half commute, we will have to move.

We have used the leftover yellow paint from doing the nursery in 2008
to do the hallway... Banana Dream 5 and I hate bananas. Not least
because that's a word that is hard to stop spelling, like slyly, but also
because the smell of the damned things makes me retch. No, really. I share
this with my paternal grandmother, but apparently no one else.
To this end I have spent the last week doing house-things. We chose paint for and then painted the bathroom over two days, I'm halfway through doing the same to the hallway. We had a day out on Tuesday and Wednesday was spent tidying up the shit we've built up since 2007. I cleared out and repackaged all the stuff in my wardrobe (work files, personal effects and clothes) which took a few hours and then Tilly started doing the same in the kitchen. She's also had two driving lessons, for a test on Friday (booked before we had to move) and we've entertained five estate agents to decide with whom to market our house. We've had two evenings off, which have been lovely, and all of us seem to have come down with colds, which has been less lovely. In short, we have been working at a frenetic pace and I still haven't managed to do any of the marking I need to do, like normal but for completely different reasons. I have, however, marked and offered advice on about seven timed essays e-mailed to me by students who are only now realising that practice is useful to them (their exam is the first Monday back) at about an hour a time. Oh, and planned for a revision session that, ahem, I shall be pulling a sickie on in order to carry out examination work. I did the same last year too. I feel bad and dishonest and bad about that.

I shall miss our woodland and the mythology that I have created to go with it. I shall miss the friendships that Tilly has formed and forged here with other families like ours who do things similar enough to us that we don't end up having those awkward and repetitive conversations about unschooling, attachment and cosleeping. I already miss the low impact half term I had planned: marking two loads of stuff and nothing else planned to be doing.

Ugh! Man hunt woolly mammoth. Bring back meat and skins. Ugh!
Now, woman, sex me.
And I wonder. Is this any more masculine? I mean, is this what being a man is all about? I am providing woolly mammoth meat in the fact that I am the one who 'works' and dictating the direction of family endeavour to the point where my place of work dictates the location of our family in the country. I am painting rooms and doing the heavy lifting. Is this it? Does that mean I should stop posting here and junk my newly bulging female wardrobe? I don't know. Thing is, where I am going seems like it will be less stressful than my current place of work, it seems like it will be more like my kind of place but there's no guarantee of that. It won't be the place I left to work in back in 2007 either - there are definitely issues but none as large as there where a member of staff ate literally all of my time for the first year - and nor will it be where I've been for the past four years. As Leslie-Ann correctly pointed out, this has been soul crushing for at least three of those years and been the driving factor in my resurgence of dressing (though it was maintained at a high level for most of 2007-9 too). Will there be opportunity in a new property and a need in a new job to actually dress if stress is the main motivation?

Now I will eat some chocolate and tomorrow I must find time to mark two sets of work, apply a second coat of paint to the doors in the hallway, look after the kiddlies whilst Tilly passes her driving test and records a song and employs an estate agent and prepares the bedroom for habitation.

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