About Me

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Written on a journey

Outside,  fine but dull grey mists leave the ground chilled.  Inside the rapidly moving train people engage with electronic devices. No more friendly conversations with people thrown together for two hours around the compact tables of a second class coach.  Each of the passengers around the table is sealed inside their own private space.  Sometimes, when I look up, I see  the woman with the short blond hair looking at me . Perhaps she wonders what I tap into one note on my little machine. Does she intuite that I write of her? Perhaps she is relieved she is not forced to converse with me?

The clouds become less dense and the warmer light behind penetrates through.  The train continues through the heart land of the country. 

As I often do on the train,  I listen to an episode of Desert Island Discs.  I choose June Brown,  the actress,  now aged 90 years old. Her relationship with music is engaging.  I think she would need conversation should she share a train table,  though I suspect I would need to upgrade to first class

I walk From Euston to St Pancras down Phoenix St accompanied now  by Catlin Moran doing her Desert Island Discs. Two very different but equally engaging women.  Caitlin, I am sure would chat away the whole journey,  should she happen to sit down at my table or walk between stations with me.

Settled on the fast train to the East Kent Coast, I pull out my paperback and ponder why I am fascinated by the places and spaces in between.

Monday, 20 February 2017

Look! We have come through

DH Lawrences's famous words were written about his relationship with his lover, as they defied convention and culture and overcame the obstacles that faced their love. Nothing quite so romantic for me but after two difficult professional years in which the institution in which I work 'required improvement' we got the necessary 'good'.  Not that things have got easy mind, the challenge of teaching the new syllabus and the demands of teaching adults and young people coming back - and not always voluntarily - for a second, third or even fourth chance, is still as difficult and rewarding as ever. To say nothing of working in the most emotionally volatile team but amazing team this side of the Irish Sea!

And indeed, to say nothing of being the late-middle-aged daughter of elderly parents - praise the Lord for supportive sisters!

'More for less' is the mantra and we seem to wait in vain for the government to step  back and fund us properly. Meanwhile, a possible take over from a richer and more powerful institution stands in front of us. More unknowns.

Nothing stays the same; everything changes and sometimes I long for the past when it all seemed simpler but then as my old senior manager used to say, 'hindsight is  wonderful thing.'

In a couple of days' time, I go to spend time with my recently widowed father and connect with the Kent coast almost 300 miles from my northerly home. How I love to visit Reculver on a cold February day or shop for nice treats in Canterbury.

Hopefully, I will have time to write abut my journey before I go back to the all consuming life of a full time lecturer in further education.

Song of a man who has come through