My excuses are varied and many but I won't bore you with all of them, only to say that January has been a time of preparation and thinking and it hasn't left me much time for anything else.
The preparation has been for two main things - one of which has taken place with great success - and the other which will begin properly next week.
First thing was the trip I had planned for Romy and I to visit our friends in Scotland. Ostensibly for Romy's birthday this year, I cannot possibly pretend that I thought it was the most perfect idea for both of us and I booked the tickets in August last year - and managed NOT to tell Romy until just after Christmas. She was thrilled, although we did have a minor hiccup when I discovered on 13th January that her passport ran out on 14th January. Despite FR's confidence in being able to get her a Spanish one through in time, when we got to the 20th I was beginning to panic and had had several recurring anxiety-fuelled toilet dreams - years since I had the last one! (Apparently, I am not alone in having this particular dream and I even wrote a blog post about but decided it was not the best idea to publish it!)
|Sunny day in Malaga.....|
|Sunny - and very windy! That's Romy on the beach causing a seagull riot!|
|And this is Riofrio, where we stopped on the way home to get fresh trout....|
not directly from the river but from the trout farm here.
Our visit to Scotland deserves a blog post of its own and will get one very shortly! We had a ball.....
|And amazing weather!|
The second thing that has been preoccupying me has been the waiting to start teaching again. A new Director has been appointed at the place where I teach and she is in charge of Human Resources, so my existing contact, the acting Head of HR has been deferring to her all during January and it seemed the English classes weren't high on her list of priorities. At least that's what I suspected.
Eventually, I was introduced to her and was a bit taken aback when she said she wanted to see that the classes were worth the money (not in as many words) and that she wanted the staff to take exams. I don't really like teaching where the main purpose is to pass an exam so I was a bit upset and concerned. However, several conversations later and finding that I really like this new woman very much indeed - she's great fun and very committed to English learning - and I now have a group of students who would like to take an exam. And I also have a group that don't want to; a group that don't need to and an advanced group that will take a high level of exam next year.
I am delighted and it's going to be just as much fun as it was last year, I can tell! I have started with one group this week and will get going 'proper' next week. And the teaching will be mainly in the mornings and early afternoon, which is fantastic as it means I can be at home with the children in the evenings. I'm feeling very good about it all. It's obviously been playing on my mind a bit because as soon as it feels sorted (now) - here I am blogging again!
FR has been very busy, with the help of a builder, adding the summer kitchen and a new storage place nearer the house, where we will put the freezer and make a bit of extra space in the kitchen. We have still quite a big mess and a lot of work to do in the garden but the hard work is beginning to give us an idea of how it might be - one day!!
|Delivery of roof tiles. Can you see a difference...?|
One day, all this will be sorted. One day. Just not very soon!!
Watch this space. There will be more, I can feel it in my fingers. Axxx