My, my, the camera hasn’t come back yet. Dear Student of my husband, whoever you are, please give it back. I need it. A blog without any pictures is probably worse than a blog without words (OK this sentence is totally stupid).
It isn’t today that you will be lucky enough to hear about something more interesting than “Me, my feelings and what I think of it all”. My apologies. Here it comes again. I only write this to clear my mind.
I said I work in a grammar school. I am a foreign language assistant, working with Year 12 and 13 pupils (who, for some mysterious reason, must now be referred to as students, not pupils. They absolutely have to be taken seriously.) I enjoy my work because of the kids. A fair number of them are able to speak French reasonably well and some of them are good enough to debate, laugh, joke, and make me feel like I’m having a friendly conversation. I have always liked my pupils. In fact, they are the reason I enjoy teaching. When I left France, where I used to teach French and Classics, I missed them for a long time. Even those who gave me a hard time.
But hey, I am a qualified teacher and hold an excellent teaching qualification. A friend said to me today : “You can’t stay an assistant forever.” Of course, she is right. If only because it doesn’t pay enough. I also need to make something of my brain. So, why don’t I apply for a teaching job ?
Well, I can’t drive. I have never taught in England. I can’t afford to retrain (and the thought of having to pay for a training which is academically way below what I did for free in France – I even got a “good student grant” from the state when I was in Paris…). Childcare here is so expensive I would have to be very well paid to make it worthwhile (which is unlikely as I don’t have any experience in this country).
OK. All this may be true but is also bullshit. I am scared actually. I come from a system where you only need to be academically good to get a job. I was a good student. I was quick and clever. I am committed and very loyal. But I don’t know how to sell myself. Of course, everybody is more or less scared of being judged when they apply for a new job, so I am just an average coward. This doesn’t help at all.
You out there, if you need somebody like me and can pay more than the cost of childcare, please hire me. I can correct your spelling, translate, read you my favourite poems out loud while you are cooking (did that to my mum for a number of years), write your letters for you, correct your thesis’ writing style (of course, if you are Proust, you don’t need my services), teach you Latin and / or ancient Greek, give private tuition, initiate you into my family’s long tradition of hunting for crumbs and sing CBBies lullabies. Anybody ?
PS : Thanks to Bernard Hill and my husband for the brilliant title.
PS 2 : I should have written “your thesis’s writing style”, as a friend pointed out. So maybe I shouldn’t correct your spelling in English…