Living Abroad or Living at Home
I was driving through the village today, on the way to Scunthorpe to get Betsy a new bank account set up for university, when she asked the question, “Mum if you hadn’t gone to university and chosen to live abroad do you think you would have always lived in Broughton or somewhere close by? Would you have lived at home?" My answer was “I doubt it” to which Betsy asked “Why not? Hmmm… good question. When I stop to think it doesn’t really make sense to not have stayed local. It seems that I’m a bit Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde! I love to Live Abroad, I love to be at home. It is same same but different!
The Value of Community and having Good Neighbours
Today has been one of those days that I have felt really grateful for. The reason for this isn't becasue a new (well 23 year old) Landrover, purchased from the extremely efficient, helpful team at Landrover Centre Huddersfield - whose cars are extremely good value for money and are actually an investment - (or so Mick tells me anyway),
Neither is it because we are now proud owners of a King of all Kings Scalextric Set - opened as an early birthday present for the self-same Saint Mick (honestly, talk about it being a day of 'toys' for boys' and yes, I know that is a sexist comment!)
No, it's actually because Betsy and I had a really enjoyable afternoon with my mum and dad at our local Village Hall, enjoying the music of a popular local singer. Having a local community to be part of is incredibly important. We are so lucky to have good neighbours and friends in our local community.
Book Review of Wendy Mitchell's Somebody I Used to Know
This week I've been spending time back in Broughton and just chilling with family. It isn't wild, but is very lovely. In the gaps I've managed to read the memoir, 'Somebody I Used to Know'. I came across it online as I follw Wendy Mitchell's blog, 'Which me am I today?' She is a woman who (or is it whom?) I hugely admire. Diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers, she has set about showing the nation that her illness is just like any other, something you live with and maange rather than a reason to give up on life. this is a super memoir about dementia.
Wendy is something of a force of nature. In all honesty, I bet she is a real 'go-getter'. She gave an animated interview on Jenny Eclair's and Judith Holder's 'Older and Wider' podcast which I really enjoyed and inspired me to learn more about her and dementia, specifically Alzheimers. (episode 20 I think). In her book she shares how she travels up and down the country, raising awareness about dementia and meeting both like minded people, and also people, who need educating. Significantly, she describes her emotions of living with the illness and how she manages the difficulties it imposes. She is very frank and honest, so consequently it is a really moving and powerful read.
Positive Student Teacher Relationships
So the end of term is upon all my teacher friends. It's a bit weird to not be there for the end of term leavers' assembly and it's odd to think that now both girls have left school there really is very little reason to return to Patana. It has been a large part of all our lives. It sounds cliched but school becomes more than just a place of work. We've all made some lifelong friends through work and I guess school has been the centre of our social and work lives. Both our girls have made some super student teacher relationships and I am sure they will keep in touch for many years to come.
Anyway, now there's only Saint Mick of Thana left at school. He's had a very busy week running around helping organise set ups for assemblies, (I actually just came across the clip of Betsy's leavers assembly on youtube, it shows Patana doesn't do things by halves!), wishing the leaving kids luck for their future and all the other unseen stuff that goes on behind the scenes. It really is the end of an era and a time of change for us all. I know next year he will miss seeing Betsy around the place a lot. Any expat teachers who have kids at the same school where they work will know what I mean . School relationships are important and having good teacher student relationships is essential.
Living at Home or Living Abroad
It's the last week of term at my old school, Bangkok Patana. Although it is overseas I feel like I'm living at home in Thailand, yet to my family in the UK, I am living abroad. My teacher friends are frantically busy getting ready for the holidays; be it packing for school improvements, organising end of term assemblies or planning final lessons - it is full on. I remember that buzz only too well and just a teeny bit of me misses it, but, to be honest, not too much. It is hard to think that it is nearly a whole academic year since I left my role as Head of Libraries. Since then I've spent a good chunk of time back in Broughton, Lincolnshire hanging out with my oldies and living the life of a retired 50 something, let's pretend I'm cool, Porsche driver! What with blogging and reading and writing and swimming, I really don't have time to go to work any more! I spend my time now reflecting on living at home or living abroad!