I’m in the middle of going through a few last-minute jobs before we embark upon a whole new year tomorrow morning. Lists of groups; table placings because Jonny* can’t sit next to Sam and Susie has to sit near the board as she can’t see well enough despite her 5 cm thick lenses, plus she has to have her back to the radiator because she suffers from the cold! Sarah can’t be on the same table as Jo because one time, Sarah’s mum called Jo’s mum because she didn’t have a job yet she still bought herself new Ugg boots once a month. This is made doubly difficult as Tom and Tim (the twins… I know) have to be sat next to each other or they’ll cry (mum’s orders and she’s a governor and knows how tricky these things are but can you just make an exception on this one occasion).
These are just a few of the little details that normally rear their heads on day one, normally whilst lining up and normally whilst I’m trying to stop young Jonny from wiping the disgusting contents of his freshly-picked nose on Amy’s (lovely girl – G&T) coat.
I’m going through my lists and making more lists (digital post-it notes, brilliant until you clutter your desktop with them) but I keep getting distracted by the hub and buzz of the social network. You can tell from the status’ piling up what sort of person is who. Even if you didn’t know them, and let’s face it, of the 300+ friends you have, how many do you know? All the teachers are grumbling and moaning and despairing about how quickly the last 6 weeks have gone (myself included, I couldn’t stop myself from joining in with a little whisper of disgruntlement). All the parents are cheering with joy as they finally offload their children again after a month and a half of near insanity with their little darlings. All the people that have real jobs and are not teachers (my friends constantly tell me I play in the sandpit all day, so life is easy) comment on their teacher friends’ status by telling them how lucky they’ve been, stop moaning, back to the sandpit Benji, etc. And that got me thinking again. I am in a job, for that I’m thankful for a start. I’m in a job I enjoy, yet more thanks. I’m in a job where I get 13 weeks holiday a year plus weekends and all the presents I can eat at the end of summer term. I’m in a pretty good position. One of my friends, sat one day and quickly worked out that as I get 13 weeks a year, effectively, I work 4 years and get 1 off. Brilliant. That’s what the Department for Education want to put in their slogans: Work 4, Rest 1.
Despite the slight unease I have about the new term; the fading light of the summer and the approaching dusk of autumn; longer days and seemingly mammoth amounts of work, I am looking forward to a new year. I am in that privileged position of being in a job I like. As long as Jonny keeps his sticky fingers to himself and the new girl, who has a musical backside, do what they’re told and when I tell ’em.
Now when is that next holiday…
*All names have been changed to protect the innocent.