Quaffed hair

Finally got out into the heart of the London social scene last night. Yeah I showed those youngsters in their tight jeans, quaffed hair and smug coolness that there’s no substitute for experience, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks etc etc….

I could see their looks, feel their jealous gaze fall upon me, as they headed out to the various clubs. I could see the hope in their eyes that when they’d reach my age they’d look even half as cool as I did, catching the fifth last tube home. On my own. Bloodshot eyes. Yawning. Thinking longingly about the cup of tea I’d promised myself when I got back.

Yep. It’s happened. Finally. I’m old. You see, I was happily catching the fifth last tube home. In fact, I’d have made it earlier had I not found it so hard to convince the door staff I didn’t require the stamp of a blue fish on my wrist to allow re-entry, that I actually had no intention of returning, I was done for the night.

There was an episode of Homelands awaiting me at home. I’d only watched one of my allotted daily ration of two episodes and the previous one had ended on such a knife edge I had to tear myself away from the tv in order to go out in the first place!

Of course, had I been anticipating the company of a beautiful woman then my attachment to Damien Lewis would not have been so keen. Alas however, I suspected/feared/knew that this would not be the case. My evening involved a small group of ten of us saying goodbye to one of our number as she returns to her native France, after having spent the last twelve years working in London. It was a relatively tame night as you may have gathered, especially when I reveal that most of the others had left even before I did.

There was some food and some dancing and the overall atmosphere of the club we were in leant itself to a sense of still being on holiday, which of course I still was. As I sit here now though that feeling has evaporated. It’s approaching midnight on Sunday and after a two week break it’s back to school in the morning. Just a training day but anything that involves setting an alarm for 6.30am can not be considered good, nor healthy. I can at least get all my planning done and possibly some of the marking I neglected over the last fortnight, ahead of the nutters, sorry, students, return on Tuesday.

And so the countdown begins, wishing my life away, until the next break, in five weeks time when I can once again turn my mind to things that I really want to do.

Like staying out past midnight.

g’night all


boiling water and salt

A few weeks ago a single friend of mine sent me a link to a night out he thought we should attend; it was a speed dating/singles party thingy and it was to happen on NYE.

Now, I’m no big fan of NYE and associated crowded throngs and inflated prices so I tend to keep things very low key. But I admit the thought of a night club filled to the rafters with single women (and men I guess) all drinking, partying and welcoming the new year in………..yeah, it filled me with dread……..I’d rather peel my own skin off and jump head first into a bath of salted boiling water.


So instead I took my seven year old daughter to another friend’s house for a quiet embrace of the new year and a sleepover. Although, as I hit the sack (small, lumpy sofa) at about 2am and my daughter and the two resident children came bounding down the stairs at shortly before 6am it was more just an ‘over’ for me as there was precious little sleep to speak of.

Inevitably at this time of the year thoughts turn to hopes and dreams for the year ahead. Apart from the usual good health to all my aim is to further the writing thingy that I’ve started; this blog, irregular as it is, my other ‘secret teacher’ blog and most importantly to finally finish the manuscript of one of the 82 novels I’ve started over the last couple of years. Simples.

It’s only in the last week or so that I’ve started trawling the cyber space out there and I’ve quickly discovered/been amazed by the large amount of people who appear to share my passion for writing. That may sound a little naive but I genuinely did’t expect to find so many others in the same boat as me and I’m sure I’ve barely scratched the surface. My writing skills are pretty basic but that doesn’t matter one jot; I love to write and I love to read what others have written, so bring it on 2013!!

See you back here later…..

….back again….

Who knew teaching full time would take up all my energies eh?!

Well, after a few days rest and an enjoyable and relaxing Christmas I’ve finally mustered enough will to write a few lines here. The term passed off without any major incident, which means I survived without shouting at, or being shouted at by, any kid.

Unfortunately my social life also took a back seat for the last couple of months. I’ll be looking to rectify that when I head out for the first time in a while tomorrow night. Hitting the centre of good old London Town for a few drinks and plenty of mischief, I hope.

Now that I’ve dipped my toe back into the blogosphere I shall endeavour to generate some excitement in my real life so I don’t have to start making stuff up here to keep you all awake!

Till next time….


Not sure if I’ve mentioned before but I’m a teacher, or rather, I’ve just returned to teaching after a few years’ absence. I’m currently supplying (covering) in a large comprehensive in London and have just completed 8 weeks. I’m starting to feel more at home in the school since half term. People know who I am at least, if not my name yet. Staff appear more familiar and the kids are by and large easier to manage in the classroom.

I’ve got my second birthday invite to attend this weekend, a Saturday night event in a themed bar in Shoreditch. There’s about 20 of us intending to go, plus the birthday girl’s other friends. I should point out at this point just how incestuous I’ve found staffrooms in general, and with me being single I’ve decided that this weekend if the opportunity arises I will make the effort to get to know certain people better. Now before you switch off in disgust, I actually mean that literally, it’s not code for trying to sleep with someone. The staff here is friendly but you still have the cloak of professionalism shrouding all conversations. It seems it’s obligatory to talk about your difficult year 8 class or the printer running out of ink yet again, or even the faltering heating system. I was never one for formalities or superficial courtesies; I’d much prefer no chat at all than trivial nonsense. In fact in my previous school some years ago so fed up every Monday morning with enquiries as to how my weekend was that I decided to conduct a little experiment. In response to all such queries I would reply, solemnly, saying how awful it was. Peoples’ reactions were varied and often priceless. Those who were merely jumping through socially decreed hoops couldn’t cope with a negative response; that wasn’t in the manual, you have to tell everyone your weekend was fine, or good, or all too brief. You weren’t allowed to be real, to say it was shit. That way I weeded out the crap, not to mention making myself less popular in the process, but I really didn’t care. The way I saw it I was saving us both the time and effort. Of course there were the few who then genuinely wanted to know why my weekend was so bad which then left me in the difficult position of either explaining my experiment or lying. Not sure always how the individual would relax I often took the second option. I’m painting a lovely picture of myself aren’t i?!

Anyway, this weekend I’m looking to start building some meaningful friendships, both male and female, away from the spectre of students and books and radiators. Of course, if sparks do fly then I’d be a fool to ignore them…..


the romance of life…

I’ve always believed in the romance of life. Despite being kicked in the teeth a few times too many I refuse to accept any hint of settling for something less than what I believe is possible in my heart.

That may sound a little soap boxy but for me the moments in life I remember are the ones in which I put myself out there, made myself vulnerable. Even on the occasions I got trampled over are memorable because they represent the times I felt most alive. They help you appreciate the good times and to fight harder to seek them out and, once secured, to hold on to them.

I used to revel in the looks on friends’ faces as I recounted events and incidents and stories of random relationships. I’d often get the sense that they wished they could live so vicariously but felt they lacked the courage to do so or to take chances.

The last couple of years however have featured far too few of these happenings. Well, not strictly true, the events that have occurred have by and large been bad ones, where greed and selfishness have reared their ugly heads and led me down paths I’d rather not have traveled. Traveled them though I have and now out the other side I’d like to think I am all the wiser for it. And this is where I am now, out the other side, looking for the next adventure, this time determined for it to be a great one.

so here goes…..

Right, first ever blog entry…………gulp.

I think I’ve posted an ‘about me’ page but not being the most technically adept individual this may not have actually happened as I can’t now find it anywhere when navigating my own blog. But I hope that anyone reading this can see the about me button where they’ll get the context for the blog and an idea as to who I am and where I’m coming from.

Anyway, not convinced sharing all this is going to interest any potential followers, so shall put that away and get on with the blog.

I’ve considered many different approaches to this first entry and I keep coming back to why I am here in the first place, and primarily that is ‘love’. The bottom line is I love that buzz you get when you meet someone who fires your soul. I love planning and plotting that shared future, be it marrying, settling down, eventually having a family or simply the next world adventure.

I’ve had reasonable success in the past but the last couple of years have included several false dawns and I’m becoming  increasingly disillusioned with the whole ‘singles’ or ‘dating’ scene. One evening last week I even decided that I should accept that this is it, I’ve had my shot at things and I should now give up, focusing all my energies on my daughter and my work. Whilst this may not seem like such a negative thing to do I would be very sad and distressed if at thirty something I was to spend the rest of my life without experiencing that excitement of meeting someone special again.

And whilst I’m no Gerard Butler (if that’s your thing) I’m cute and charismatic (and evidently prone to the odd bout of alliteration), have all my own hair and teeth, possess reasonable intelligence and no criminal record. Basically, I’m not a washed out has been drinking from the cup of despair, well, not yet at least.

The frequency of my posting will depend upon the active (or not) nature of my social life. I may delve into work and other life related issues from time to time, but we shall see.