Christine, Wondering

Random Musings of a Human Becoming

Sunday, December 30, 2007


Yesterday at work, a customer said what is categorically the strangest thing any customer has ever said to me. I was phoning her up to let her know that her glasses had come in.

Me: Hi, is that Mrs Customer?
Her: Yes?
Me: Hi, it's Christine here from My Workplace in Suburb. I'm just calling to let you know that your glasses are ready to be collected.
Her: Oh, you're working today are you? And just after I've turned my wireless off.
Me: ...
Her: Okay, I'll come in and collect those on Monday. Thankyou, dear.
Me: No worries, we'll see you then.
Her: Bye now *hangs up*
Me: WTF?!

The only hypothesis the five of us (4 girls and a male optom) could come up with was that she meant that she'd just turned her mobile phone ("wireless"?) off and thought I might have tried to call her on that, but we didn't even have a mobile number for her. And that doesn't quite sound right anyway. I say again . . . WTF?

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Christmassy Goodness

And so this is Christmas,
And what have you done?
Another year over,
A new one just begun . . .

I’ve had such a lovely Christmas. I got some very nice presents, but even more important than the presents has been the feel of the whole thing. I’ve had fun times with my family, warm and loving and merry, and S has been by my side through most of it. I’ve given gifts that made people happy and excited, and generally had a pleasant and fulfilling festive season.

The compulsory gift wrap-up:

What I got:

From Mum and Stepdad: A silver St Christopher medallion (I wasn’t supposed to get anything from them as they’d spent my Christmas present money towards the camera I got for my birthday, but Mum couldn’t resist!)

From 24yo brother and his girlfriend: “Monty Python Live at the Hollywood Bowl” DVD.

From 11yo sister: Lithium batteries for future use in my camera.

From 9yo brother: Champagne flutes (Mum helped him choose them, but he still had the final say, and they’re very elegant!)

In my stocking from Mum: A dynamo torch (it never needs batteries, you just wind the handle for a minute and it lasts for hours), a battery-operated camping lantern, various chocolates, and a pack of fudge, nougat and marzipan goodies.

From Dad and Stepmum: A $150 Coles Myer Group gift card (Coles Myer Group own a whole range of stores including supermarkets, department stores, liquor stores, Officeworks etc. One of the things I’ll get is a new desk chair, mine is broken).

From 15yo stepbrother and 14yo stepsister, but purchased by Stepmum: A silver necklace with a purple stone in it apparently called charoite (I looked it up and apparently it’s a hard mineral rather than a stone, and reasonably rare, so that’s pretty cool).

Also from 15yo stepbrother and 14yo stepsister, but purchased by Stepmum: a calligraphy set with three pens and 14 inks and an instruction booklet. This is kind of a WTF present – it’s cool and all and I’ll probably have fun using it at some point or use it in my classroom, but it bears no relationship whatsoever to anything on my Christmas list, my known or extrapolated hobbies, or in fact anything I’ve ever said or done lol. Nonetheless I was very politely ecstatic about it when I opened it!

From an aunt and uncle: $50 in a card.

From workmates, variously: A box of chocolates, a mini bottle of a Cabernet Sauvignon, a pair of thongs (flip-flops) that fit me perfectly, and some nourishing hand and nail cream. The thongs are a real hit – I didn’t have any but felt defeated every time I braved the huge stands of thongs in the shops trying to find a good pair. These are perfect and I didn’t have to go to any effort whatsoever to get them!

From S, the most important present of all: a bottle of the perfume “Byzance”. It’s GORGEOUS and I’m over the moon about it. So happy!

I also got a $25 voucher to most stores at any Westfield shopping centre (Westfield is a shopping centre (mall) chain that owns several of the biggest centres in Perth). That wasn’t a gift but a reward from work’s Head Office for selling 5 of a particular range of frames for a $5 reward each! Having lost my watch last week I know exactly what I’ll be spending that $25 on.

What I gave people:

Mum: A $15 Spotlight (fabric, craft, homewares store) voucher; and went halvies in S’s present for her which was a bottle of crème de cacao.

Stepdad: I bought him a cheap version of the iTrip, a gadget which broadcasts the sound from your iPod or other mp3 player through a frequency on your car radio. 24yo brother conspired and got the double adapter for the car power socket which he needed to run this. He was totally blown away – really impressed as he’d never heard of one so the gift was a total surprise. Yay!

24yo brother: “The Court Jester” DVD

24yo brother’s girlfriend: A frosted glass tealight holder with a stars and moons motif, and a pack of 8 blueberry-scented tealights.

11yo sister: One of a particular set of small plastic horse figurines she’s currently collecting, plus a packet of paddlepop sticks (popsicle sticks) from which she can make fences for the toy horses.

9yo brother: A “Mars Mission” lego pack.

Dad and Stepmum: They didn’t want presents as such but S and I got them a bottle of their favourite wine.

15yo stepbrother: $10 Coles Myer or Kmart gift card (can’t remember which lol)

14yo stepsister: Silver dangly earrings (stars on chains)

Workmates: Boxes of chocolates

It’s been such a lovely Christmas, despite having been frustrating and upsetting at times – I think I’m finally starting to learn acceptance and serenity (Siri, you have helped so much with this, thankyou again). I’ve let nothing spoil the mood, no matter how negative other people were being – something I’ve never mastered before. ‘Tis good!


I started looking for a car to buy today. I can spend $1000 but no more, so I’m looking at the very basic end of the second-hand range. Unfortunately the best car yard for cheap cars (about 30 at that price range!) is closed for holidays this week, and the other places only had one or two at that price. It was a hot day and S and I both got exhausted and sunburned (him a little on the face, me bright red on one arm and the back of my neck – I missed spots with the sunscreen apparently). Not the best start but we test-drove a couple so we have an idea of what I’d bee looking at. Next Thursday is our next opportunity but they’re forecasting 39 degrees so it looks like a definite no-go! 33 degrees today was quite bad enough.

I’m feeling happy, peaceful, humble, very much in love and very positive about the new year. Thanks be to God.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Thoughts

To begin with, a disclaimer . . . I had a very long day at work and I had a glass of wine with dinner, so I’m a bit tiddly, not quite typing straight and feeling oddly mellow. And I’m rambling and blathering on.

I have so much to be thankful for this Christmas. I’m incredibly thankful for S and the wonderful relationship we have. I’m thankful for the bits of my brain which know how to get distinctions at university – damned if I know how they do it, but I’m grateful nonetheless. I’m thankful for my lovely family, particularly including my supportive mother, my awesome sister and my gorgeous cat. I’m thankful for my friends, through whom I learn so much, and who also have been incredibly supportive this year (I particularly have to mention Siri and Tassiegirl who always have something kind to say when I’m in need; and Sonia and Matthew, who have been a much-needed source of sanity in my life). I’m thankful for the ways in which my life is coming together and heading in the direction I want it to go. I’m thankful for my faith, which I find growing stronger and more peaceful as I settle in to a more stable frame of mind. I’m thankful for my sense of humour, which keeps me going. I’m thankful for life, the universe and everything :-)

"Loving Father,
Help us remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds,
and worship of the wise men.

Close the door of hate
and open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift
and good desires with every greeting."
Deliver us from evil by the blessing
which Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.

May the Christmas morning
make us happy to be thy children,
and Christmas evening bring us to our beds
with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven,
for Jesus' sake.


Robert Louis Stevenson

Sunday, December 23, 2007


I’m strangely happy at the moment. It’s a weird sort of a feeling, I’m just floating above anything that might really worry and upset me.

There’s been a few things that would normally have riled me up (silly people!) or upset me (other peoples’ babies, everywhere) but while I’ve still felt those emotions, I’ve felt amused and merry over the top of them. I know that doesn’t make sense lol. But I guess I’m just finding that life at the moment is good and pleasant, and no matter what goes wrong, things will be sorted out somehow. I’m coping with difficulties wonderfully, and finding that some things just fail to bother me. Almost as if I can’t be bothered getting annoyed and refuse to spoil my mood by doing so!

It’s a good feeling.

Check out this neat video: it’s a house right here in Perth. Must be watched with speakers / headphones on as sound is essential.

PS: Dad and Stepmum have apparently patched things up, and all seems okay on that front. I'm glad . . . Christmas is not the right time for that!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Wobbly Universe

So, this afternoon, Dad phones me to ask about a few things on my Christmas list and to ask what he should get S for Christmas. We discussed that then hung up. About 20 seconds later, Dad called back and said something like "by the way, I thought you'd better know that Boxing Day* might be off because I'm not speaking to your stepmother right now and I may walk out before then".


He then went on to tell me that he's been dissatisfied for a year and a half, but my stepmother had just done something that was serious enough for him to call the whole thing off (he didn’t tell me what it was) and he’s just trying to work out what to do.

Now, my Dad is no drama queen. He doesn’t parade his emotions around – particularly not negative ones. He was brought up to keep a stiff upper lip and pretend that everything’s fine, and that’s what he does. So for Dad to be telling me that . . . he’s not just blowing off steam or being melodramatic. He must be serious.

I can’t honestly say I’d be sorry to see my stepmother out of our lives. I’ve never felt she was good for Dad, and she’s jealous and petty towards my brother and I. I don’t dislike her nearly as much as I used to, because I’ve grown out of reacting to her behaviour, but I still don’t particularly like her. So in that sense I wouldn’t be sad if they split.

But I’m hurting dreadfully for Dad. He was devastated when Mum left him, and for his second marriage to break up too . . . he must be feeling horrible. And it’ll be devastating financially for both of them, which is difficult too. And for Dad to have to try to rebuild a family and a social circle a third time . . . oh, it hurts.

And then there’s my 15yo stepbrother and 14yo stepsister. I care for both of them, even though I’m not close to them and find them both a bit annoying. Dad would be the third father figure / male role model to abandon them (the first being 15yo’s biological father, who chose not to have a relationship but sends money occasionally; and the second being 14yo’s biological father who also adopted 15yo, whom my stepmother kicked out for being violent with 15yo when he was a toddler, and who has now married a Filipino woman who doesn’t like the kids very much and tries to keep their father at arms’ length). Not only is Dad the only really decent male in their lives, but he’s the only truly intelligent and intellectual person in their lives. It will be very hard on them to lose the only man who has been a stable part of their lives for the last 10 years.

It may not happen. They may patch things up. But . . . it’s a wobble, and I don’t like wobbles!

* We celebrate Christmas with Dad the day after Christmas, which is known as Boxing Day here.

Saturday, December 15, 2007


So. Ahem. After worrying secretly for weeks that I hadn't passed two of my units and would be in real strife because I wouldn't be able to teach next year . . . these are my results:

First Semester Units:
Intro to Teaching: 65%, Credit
Mathematics Curriculum: 75%, Distinction
English Curriculum: Haven't got the mark yet (disorganised ****s!), but I think it'll be a credit
Soc & Env and Science Curriculum: 74%, Distinction

Second Semester / Whole Year Units:
Arts and Phys Ed Curriculum: 63%, Credit
Schools in Context: 71%, Distinction
Special Needs: 77%, Distinction
Learning and Assessment Processes: 78%, Distinction

May School Experience: Ungraded Pass
Preliminary Internship: Ungraded Pass
Professional Internship (Prac plus coursework): 63%, Credit

All credits and distinctions, excepting the Ungraded Passes . . . I'm so hugely relieved I can't say how good it feels! It's over and done, and I not only survived but did so with an average I'm actually not ashamed of, given the trials and tribulations I've been through this year, moving and working and chopping and changing and falling in love.

I'm proud of me! 

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Raging hormones

I don't know what to do with myself today. I woke up this morning with a splitting headache, a powerful craving for chocolate, and a strong feeling that I was going to bawl if anyone even mentioned the word "baby". All this equals hormones on the rampage in my book, but it's left me with a frustratingly restless and aimless day in which I've achieved nothing and spent a fair bit of time wandering around the house like a bored ghost hoping that something would shake me out of my mood.

Bah, humbug!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Sooo clucky!

Happy birthday to me!  27 today! Yikes

Birthdays aside (or perhaps, because of the annual reminder of that ticking clock), I've been awfully clucky lately - the really bad, burst-into-tears-at-adverts-featuring-kids type cluckiness. S and I won't be ready for kids for a few years yet - we have to afford a wedding first and we want to do at least one overseas holiday beforehand (Egypt, we’re thinking). It’s going to be a while. But the hormones think otherwise! They’re saying I’m still youngish, fertile and in love, so what’s the hold up? *sigh*

Apart from that, I'm enjoying my birthday and have got lots of nice presents - full wrap-up later.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Birthday Coolness

The first of my birthday celebrations happened today (two days early). At lunchtime we had my grandparents over for lunch (baked ham, yorkshire puddings, roast veggies etc . . . with Black Forest cherry cake and icecream for dessert, yum).

My grandmother gave me a lovely hardcover edition of Dickens' "A Christmas Carol", which is something I wouldn't buy for myself, plus the Folio Society diary, which she's got me three years running - they're illustrated diaries and they bring out a completely differently themed one each year. 2006 was the Orient, 2007 was about significant moments in art and history, and 2008 is about literature illustrations, with a huge range of illustrations drawn from Folio Society editions of classic books. It's cool :-D

My brother and his girlfriend, who won't see me on my birthday as they don't live here, gave me the board game Balderdash, which is a vocabulary and bulldanging game which has the motto 'Learn, Laugh and Lie'. I’ve wanted it for years so I was pretty chuffed.

I also got my main combined-birthday-and-Christmas present from Mum. She had decided to get me a digital camera, but she wanted me to hold the one she’d chosen before she bought it, to make sure that the weight and grip were alright for my dodgy right hand. The local shopping centre had special Sunday trading this week (they often get the few Sundays leading up to Christmas) so we slipped down to the camera shop after everyone left, and got my camera. I decided that it would be a bit silly for Mum to then take it and wrap it after I’d already held it, so I got it today. And I have to say, it’s AWESOME. I played with it in the garden this afternoon and took some lovely shots, particularly with the Macro close-up setting. I can’t wait to spend more time playing with it!

Some of the pictures:

Mint leaves


Some sort of berries!

Pretty hanging purple flowers lol

I ought to know the name of these, but it's slipped my mind

Our outdoor entertaining area at the back of our house. Gorgeous, huh?

I love my camera :-D

Friday, December 7, 2007


I took 11yo-Sis into the Perth CBD this evening for late night shopping, so that she could get Christmas presents for everyone. This is her first year with an allowance rather than pocket money, so she wanted to purchase the presents herself.

We had a lovely time getting presents for everyone except me lol, and also got her some jeans which she badly needed (Mum is unfashionable and doesn't really dress the kids in anything other than tracksuit pants or shorts and t-shirts and jumpers/jackets, so Sis literally had NO smart trousers of any variety!). She looked awesomely cool in her new jeans :-D

Anyway, we had a great time shopping, got cakes from a cafe as we were leaving, then drove around the city centre several times looking at the various different lights and decorations, then sang Christmas Carols all the way home. We didn't manage to get all of the lyrics right, Sis had a giggle fit during Jingle Bells, and we both cracked up repeatedly while we tried to remember all of the later verses of The Twelve Days of Christmas, and we just basically had fabulous sister-time.

In the car on the way home, Sis observed: "I wouldn't be surprised if this is the happiest I've ever been".


Friday, November 30, 2007

I have a house!

I went up to Little Wheatbelt Town today to meet the principal and the other teachers, and to see a house that the principal had found as a possibility for me.

It's the most precious place!

It's about a hundred years old (definitely pre-WWI). The exterior photo is below - isn't it cute? It's classic Federation Australian style. Internally, it has three large bedrooms with high ceilings and jarrah panelling on the walls. There’s an aircon unit and a pot-belly stove in the living room, and the kitchen is being fully refurbished before I move in (they’re also fixing up the carpets and repainting several rooms). It’s set on a huge block, nearly half an acre I think, and they’ve said that if I decide to get a dog they’ll fix up the fencing so that it’s dog-proof. The garden is dry but has quite a few nice hardy plants growing in it. There’s a shed for storage in the backyard, too.

I’m totally in love with the place and I can’t wait to move in!

This is the street-front:

I'm so excited, I can't wait to move in! I'm going to start working out where my furniture will go as soon as possible. So much fun!

If I have to move, at least I'm moving somewhere interesting :-D

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


Sorry for the three-day hiatus in posting - I worked Saturday and Monday, and stayed at S's house in the meantime, so I haven't been near a computer.

Various news from the weekend . . .

For the first time since I was sixteen years old, Australia has a new prime minister. THANK THE LORD! Racist, sexist, bigoted, megalomaniac, money-is-everything John Howard is gone, and Labor are back in power. There's going to be changes, and no doubt some of them will be a bit scary. But our new prime minister, Kevin Rudd, has already said that he will say sorry to victims of the Stolen Generation in his first term. It's that kind of thing that makes me incredibly proud to be a Labor Party member and voter.

Not only did John Howard's Liberals (who are really conservatives) lose the election, but John Howard himself failed to retain his electorate, Bennelong - losing to a former television presenter who was the Labor candidate. That is most satisfactory ownage  I loathe what Howard has done to my beloved Australia and I'm ever so glad he's gone.


On Saturday night I went to the reunion for the second of my three high schools. At this high school I was very unpopular – not disliked exactly, just generally ignored – and I was very unhappy there for most of the time. I went to the reunion with some trepidation, expecting to struggle to find anyone to talk to, or even who remembered me. Because I’d felt so disconnected from the rest of the cohort, I felt that the others of that year might even feel that I had no right to be at the reunion since there was no one I would be expected to want to reunite with.

As usual, my fears were totally ungrounded. I was welcomed, interrogated, included, and even found myself getting along extremely well with some very unlikely people. It was a very special evening and an incredibly powerful healing process. What I discovered was that they didn’t remember that I’d been unpopular. They remembered that I’d been there with them through three very important years in our lives. They’d mostly forgotten that I was shy, quiet, awkward and depressive at the time, and instead remembered me as a witness to their own formative years. A few even remembered that I’d been passionate about archaeology and were thoroughly delighted to hear that I’d made it to being one, even if it was only for a while.

I can thoroughly recommend 10-year high school reunions as a form of therapy, folks. Going to that reunion has empowered me to put so many little anxieties and insecurities to rest. It feels good

I think that's all for now. Today is devoted to slacking off and doing nothing except things that I want to do, before getting into some serious tidying and errand-running tomorrow (I can't go anywhere today anyway, I woke up to discover that 9yo brother had been casually left with me as he's coughing too much to go to school!). I intend to write a bit, play the flute a bit, and talk to my cat a lot. Nothing that I don't want to do!

Friday, November 23, 2007

So . . . I made it

I had my last two exams today - sailed through them both - and, um, I'm done. It's finished. My Grad Dip Ed is over. I actually did it.

I'm a bit in shock about this lol.

It's been such a tough, long, intense, fraught year that I can't quite get my head around the fact that that's it. No more assignments. No more exams. Provided that I haven't stuffed anything up . . . I'm a teacher.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Weird dreams

I've been sleeping badly this week, due to exam stress, missing S, and large temperature variations between day and night. If I get overheated I get nightmares, and for the last few nights I've had a recurring theme in these nightmares. I dream that I wake up, overheated and gasping for breath (which indicates that I'm overheated when I'm dreaming lol). It's daytime, and later than it should be. I discover that the power is off, stumble out of bed and out into the living area, where I find that the rest of the family are out (as usual!) but they've left me asleep without letting me know that workmen were coming to do something electrical. So I stumble out in my pyjamas then get a massive shock when I find unexpected people in the house.

What the hell is my subconscious trying to tell me?!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

"Contemplating thinking about thinking"

Heh, the title isn't all that relevant, except that I'm listening to the song it comes from right now (Robbie Williams' "Come Undone") and it seemed appropriate.

I've been writing an essay about Aspergers / High Functioning Autism kids, and also studying the subject in general, for both of my exams this semester, and I'm finding more and more things I do that really are Autistic traits. Take this quote from this website :

"One of the key symptoms common between boys and girls is a hyper-focused interest one particular thing or topic. For boys, the special interests are often in areas of science or transportation (trains or airplanes). In girls, the focus is often on animals or classic literature. The interest in and of itself isn't unusual, but a child with Asperger's will have an unusually intimate knowledge of his or her topic of interest. Young girls may play with dolls and have imaginary friends, which doesn't seem at all unusual. However, her interest in these things will continue even when she's a teenager and they should have been outgrown."

ZOMG. I was still playing with dolls at 14, and only stopped because I moved house and never got to unpack them again. And classic literature . . . before I discovered fantasy, I flatly refused to read anything that was not set in the 1800s. The only exception I made was for certain novels that fitted in with my other obsessions (such as first names - the "Babysitters Club" books fed this obsession rather well). Even today I'm pretty damn obsessed with 1800s literature, and I occasionally start writing stories about characters that are actually my childhood dolls o_O Set, of course, in the 1800s.

I also stim. I had never, ever realised this before, but I do. I scratch lightly at my hands, arms and legs - not enough to leave more than a slight red mark, but enough to counteract the sensory overload from things like breezes and goosebumps, which I've always hated feeling. Eeep!

And another completely unrelated topic in this grab-bag post: a slight rofl. As I was walking down the library steps, I heard two guys behind me having the following conversation:

1: Seen Mary-Jane lately?
2: Yeah, a few days ago.
1: Uhuh
2: I was gonna go see her this morning, but you know . . . exams and all that
1: Didn't we agree that Mary-Jane was a distraction when it comes to studying?
2 (laughing): Yeah, well.

The two guys were both quite young - I'd say first or second year, so 20 or younger - and I just can't help wondering whether they really thought they were having a subtly disguised conversation about marijuana. Because it was pretty blatantly obvious to me lol. They sounded like they thought they were being so clever and devious :-D

That's all for now, I think, lol

Monday, November 12, 2007

o_O (random)

I will never understand why it is that criminals think it's okay to talk about their crimes - past or future - in loud voices, while on public transport.

Today on the train  - a reasonably crowded 9am train - I stood there listening to one crook proudly telling another about how he was on bail for having fired a gun right next to a fellow crook's ear, busting the other guy's eardrum, because the other guy didnt believe he was being threatened with a real gun.

Seriously, should the whole damn train be hearing this? 

In the past I've listened to guys casually threatening to kill people for snitching, conducting drug deals, and all manner of weird stuff. The police ought to have a dozen plain-clothes officers on every train, they'd clean up so much petty crime that way.

It just blows my mind. Don't these people even wonder whether someone might dob them in?

Thursday, November 8, 2007

At last!

With my phone functioning normally today, the Ed Dept managed to get through to me, and finally I know where I'm going next year.

I'm not going to post the name of the town here since that'd be giving away my exact location during school hours next year! But I can say that it's a small town in the inner wheatbelt east of Perth. It's about 1.5-2 hours from anywhere significant in Perth. It was my second choice when I ranked the schools in my placement request, and it's only half an hour's drive from my first choice, which is a larger town with lots of community facilities, hence the attraction. The town I'm going to is convenient and close to the city, and it's a quiet, pleasant town that I think will be thoroughly manageable as a home for the next year or two. I'll be moving out there sometime in mid to late January next year, ready for the start of the teachers' term on the 31st of January.

All up, I'm very happy!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Aieee . . .

Today, while I was out and about, my phone battery died. So, of course, THE ED DEPT HAVE BEEN TRYING TO REACH ME ALL DAY REGARDING MY PLACEMENT!



They got through to Mum at home, who said that I'd be available tomorrow, so with any luck they'll manage to call me tomorrow. But . . . zomg, of all the worst luck! Nyak!

The Michelle Phenomenon

Would someone, anyone please explain to me why it is that, when someone forgets my real name, they invariably substitute Michelle?

It's bizarre. It happened back when I used to work at Coles, it happened at uni, it happened in Sydney, it happened in my secretarial job, and it happened again yesterday when I was filling in at another store as part of my current junk-job.


Do I look like a Michelle? What does a Michelle look like? Why does that particular name jump into peoples' heads, and not any other? I just don't get it!

And I don't even particularly like the name Michelle!

Friday, November 2, 2007


Don't worry, nothing's wrong, I'm just feeling all roiled up this evening. I'm tired of having to deal with personalities all the time - some people bring out the Aspergers worse than others, and I just get so fed up and cranky with the way I can't understand them and they can't understand me. I'm sick of dealing with so many people for so much of my time. I want a little family and pets and chickens and a big block and some space to think and grow without so many people hammering on my skull all the time wanting me to come out and be like them. Ugh. Why can't I just hide?

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Over it

I'm so bored at uni at the moment. The assignments I'm doing are simply irrelevant: they neither assess nor inform my teaching skills. And they're also not legitimate assessments. Since when has a 10-minute group presentation been any indication of learning?! And yet we've been taught that all assessment must be valid . . . *sigh* Roll on exams and the whole thing being over and done with. That's still four and a bit weeks away.

With any luck I'll find out which school I'm going to next year within those four weeks, and can start making some definite plans. And hopefully those definite plans will involve 'S' who I'm looking forward to meeting on Sunday. Fingers crossed . . .

Monday, October 15, 2007

Well, that's done

I've just finished doing the wipe-out of all of the melodramatic posts. I've left some of the whingey ones, because they've got content that's important for general context, but the real melt-downs are gone. And I'm not going to be posting them any more . . . they're not healthy.

In other news, Mum took this photo of me at my uncle's wedding last month. I was hugging 9yo-brother, and I think it's rather a lovely shot.

Sunday, October 14, 2007


This article is an interesting read for anyone who's wondered what it's like to have Aspergers.

I found the article truly uncanny - so many of the things this guy talks about ring true in my own childhood. For example, he talks about having hated the act of bashing apart piñatas and having been taken home inconsolable from a party after having watched the piñata donkey being 'killed'. I used to cry if I accidentally 'hurt' one of my dolls . . . I still feel guilty that they're locked up in boxes getting squashed, for that matter. 

The whole article is full of such things. If you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to be inside my head (or wondered what I mean when I say that it’s my childhood more than my adulthood that confirms that I have Aspergers), then have a read. That’s what it’s like.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Change Coming Soon

This is my second week of "study break", and so far I've spend one day writing assignments and two days in bed fighting off yet another sore-throat-based virus. Blech.

The next two weeks are taken up with classes, then I have four more weeks of assignment-writing time, two weeks in which I will have two exams, and then I'm done with this course and free to just work (for money!) and relax until I move sometime in January.

Sometime in the next two months this blog is going to undergo a purge. I'm going to take out all of the torrid, tragic posts from my moments of deep depression, and my savage rants from moments of rage. I want to use this blog as a place to share information with friends and "selected" family members once I go country - a journal of my country schoolma'am experience lol - so all that needs to go. Plus I think it's better to put those experiences to bed. I'm determined to come to grips with my weight, my finances and my depression next year - all at once, as they're inextricably linked anyway. So I'm going to spring clean my blog and make a fresh start.

The fun stuff and photos will remain!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Coming up for air


Prac is over, and I'm currently on a two-week "study break", which largely means that I'm either writing assignments or doing extra shifts at work because I need the money. "Break" doesn't really feature all that much.

Prac was horrible. Well . . . I loved the teaching, and I passed, but both my teacher and my supervisor made it explicitly clear that they don't believe in graduate diplomas, think the course should be scrapped, and don't think any grad dip student can ever be good enough, especially when compared with the "wonderful" fourth-year BEd students. I nearly killed myself coming up with interesting and innovative programmes and keeping up with the paperwork, and all I got was "satisfactory" for everything on my report, even though my teacher was effusive about many of my lessons at the time when I taught them.

I’m angry and frustrated and sad and annoyed, but there’s nothing I can do, and it won’t matter a damn in the long run – the education department contract is valid as long as I passed my prac, and after a year in the classroom it really won’t matter at all.

But it hasn’t helped my confidence any, and I spent most of the long weekend (ie last weekend) wondering whether I was actually unemployable since I apparently keep stuffing up professional work situations. I think I’m not. But . . . I don’t know. Oh well, I can always do what everyone keeps saying, and find & marry a nice farmer :-D SAHM ftw!

(. . . er. That little burst of abbreviations translates to “stay at home mothering for the win” . . .)

Yesterday I took a break from everything – assignments, work, too many damn people in this house – and drove out into the Wheatbelt region east of Perth, which is where I’ll be teaching next year. I did a big loop and briefly visited (or did a drive-by viewing of) the towns of Bakers Hill, Northam, Meckering, Goomalling, Wongan Hills, Calingiri, Bolgart and Toodyay, which are eight out of the 35 towns I may be sent to next year (there’s 38 schools in those 35 towns – Northam has 3 schools and Merredin 2, the others all just one). None of those I visited are more than two hours’ drive from my parents’ house. It was a very pleasant day, and the scenery was lovely – green fields of wheat and lupins (it’s Spring here), spectacular wildflowers on the verges and around the creeks and gullies, and some striking rock formations.

Between Wongan Hills and Calingiri I stopped at Lake Ninan, a large inland salt lake from which the Mortlock River flows. Here’s some photos . . .

Several of the lake. The hills in the background are the Wongan Hills. In the local Aboriginal language (I think it’s still Noongar out there, but don’t quote me), they were known as Wongan Katta – Wongan meaning “whispering” and katta meaning “hills”. So, the Whispering Hills. I like that!

Salt crystals around the shore of the lake. When I was taking these, the glare off the sand and the salt was so bright that I could barely see the screen of my camera, even with a hat and sunglasses on, so I had to kind of guess that they were coming out!

I liked Wongan Hills the best of all the towns I visited, although Goomalling came in a close second for atmosphere even though it’s smaller than I’d like. I don’t like Northam (it’s too big and has too many social problems), Toodyay alright but the school is large and it has some of the difficulties of Northam, Bakers Hill is so close to the metro area that I might not get housing, and Calingiri, Bolgart and Meckering are just so small – Meckering’s school only has 30 pupils! Still, I’ll go where I’m sent, and I’m sure I’ll be fine wherever I go. I still don’t love the Wheatbelt landscape as much as the forests of the South West, but from what I saw yesterday, it’s not unlovable.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I've lost weight!

It's been ages since I managed to weigh myself, as my days have usually been so full that I haven't felt relaxed enough to take the time. Plus the scales are in a public area of the house (my parents' study) which made me selfconscious.

This morning I felt relaxed enough, and my parents were busy elsewhere, so I jumped on the scales.

I've lost more than 3 kilos!

I knew I had to be losing weight because my clothes were getting looser, but that's happened before without any really obvious change on the scales. I was pretty delighted to see that number pop up :-D

All I've been doing is, basically, being too damn busy to eat. I'm so harried and stressed and constantly busy that there's really no time for me to snack or even think about snacking. And I'm too broke to be buying food when I'm out, most of the time. That, and the fact that Mum weighs my dinners along with hers so that they're Weight Watchers portions, seems to be doing the trick.

Now to keep it up . . .

Monday, September 10, 2007

Not forgotten

Back in 1995, 14-year-old Christine sat down at her computer and began to write an autobiographical novel. Its subject was to be the utter destruction of life as she knew it, which followed her parents' divorce and the forced house-move that meant losing contact with every friend she'd ever had. The title was going to be Please Don't Forget Me - a plaintive plea to her former classmates not to let her prior existence disappear entirely.

It sounds silly now, doesn't it! I don't want to to trivialise what I was going through at that age - my existing life had been destroyed. Like all teenagers I experienced the shock with a level of hysteria that seems peculiar to my adult self, but to me at 14 the distress was very real.

On Saturday the 1st I went to the 10-year reunion of the high school I left in 1994 (ie I would have graduated year 12 with the class of 1997). I went along expecting to spend most of the night explaining who I was – because, of course, I was only there for two years, and I was so quiet and unimportant that no one would remember me, would they?

So . . . it took about 30 seconds for someone to scream “OMG! Christine! You’re here! Where did you go?!”. And more in the same vein. All night. Everyone remembered me, many had missed me, some had vaguely worried about my disappearance (I didn’t announce that I was leaving, I just didn’t turn up in year 10). I was hugged, interrogated, enthused at, etc.

I’ve been a bit blown away by it all, to be honest. For so long I’ve assumed that I’d made little or no impression on the people who shared those two years at that school with me – certainly far less of an impression than they had made on me. But the evidence is incontrovertible . . . they remembered me! I’m now Facebooked with lots of them too, and suddenly I’ve got almost as many friends from that high school as I would have if I’d been there right up until graduation. It’s almost . . . almost . . . like the horror of being snatched away from that school never really happened.

And that’s a *weird* feeling!

I’m so busy with prac at the moment that I haven’t had time to analyse all of the feelings that have been thrown up by the reunion. Which is possibly a good thing – it can sort itself out without my help! But in the quiet moments when I’ve been able to listen in to the background noise of my brain, it seems that I’m intensely glad to know that I was remembered and valued by so many people, and it also seems I’ve gained a building block in my attempts to repair my ever-crumbling self-esteem. I believed I was almost invisible at high school, unnoticed and unmemorable. I was wrong. I was visible and important and part of things. I really was.

Monday, August 27, 2007


After the long, long wait, I finally got my contract and letter from the Education Department today. WHEEE!

I'm going to be teaching in the Midlands region of Western Australia. I won't find out which school I'm going to be teaching at until October-ish, but for the time being it’s plenty enough to know that the school will be in Midlands.

Here’s a map: I currently live near the yellow star in the bright blue section, and the driving distance between Perth and Southern Cross is about 372 kilometres.

I’m so delighted that I’ve finally found out – I was running around screaming earlier! And today was the first day when I actually forgot to wonder whether the letter would be here when I got home lol.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Aww, I love my sister . . .

Sis (11.5 years old) has recently started reading all of the adult-level fantasy I was reading at her age - Raymond E. Feist, David Eddings, Anne McCaffrey etc. She’s currently reading Anne McCaffrey’s Pern series – and coincidentally so am I, since old favourites are just about the only think my overworked brain can take at the moment. I was getting the next book out for her this evening, and we were talking about the books, when she said, laughing: “I wish fire lizards were real. It’s not fair!” I couldn’t help laughing with her, and we both got the giggles. I felt exactly the same way about fire lizards when I was her age – I used to pretend that our cat was a fire lizard when she curled up next to me while I was reading those books. Sis is growing into such a fascinating and delightful young lady, and so, so fast. It’s wonderful that she’s getting to the age where we can share things like that. I’m going to miss being around her all the time, when I go to the country next year. Mum doesn’t realise it yet but I’m going to steal Sis on school holidays rather a lot! 

Monday, August 13, 2007

Interesting analogy

This is a paraphrased version of an analogy we were presented with in our Special Needs lecture today.

Think of your class as a bag of mixed lollies. Most of them are lollies you'll like, some are lollies you'll really love. But some will be a bit hard to chew, perhaps, or they'll be a flavour you don't like. Does that mean you're going to chuck them in the bin? They didn't choose to be that tooth-cracking caramel or the black jellybean you can't stand to taste.  And they didn't choose to be in your bag of lollies, but it's the only bag available. Whether you like them or not, you have to eat them up. And you may be surprised . . . you may just find that you like liquorice jelly beans after all.

I can't decide whether that's a stroke of inspired genius, or a bit creepy and weird, or both. But the message behind it is very important. Special Needs kids (whether their need is physical, developmental or emotional) didn't choose to be that way, and you're the only teacher they've got, so no matter how difficult it is, you have to make the best of it.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Apologies . . .

. . . for the severe lack of bloggage lately.

I'm only updating quickly as I want to go to bed, but I promise a full thingy will be forthcoming, eventually.

- I survived, and passed, the two-week prac - my voice came back and I managed alright from then on despite a heavy cold.

- I'm still sick with the latest progression of the virus, which paranoia would suggest is looking more and more like whooping cough. It can't be, I don't have time. But the fact that I'm having long spasms of uncontrollable coughing is undeniable, so whether it's WC or not is largely academic.

- I went for another walk last week and took more nice nature photos. The creek is much higher, I've got some cool before-and-after shots from the two walks.

- Jemima is fine and I can't quite believe how big she is these days, I need to take more pictures of her.

That's all for now, I need to take cough medicine and go to bed. I hope Sunday will be update day!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Well, great.

I've lost my voice. 

It's not completely gone, I can still communicate in this sort of strangled-sounding half whisper, but it's certainly not a normal voice.

All I can say is, thank God it went today (Saturday) and not during the week. I've called in sick to work – I could hardly go around selling spectacles when I sound like a crone from a fairy tale – and I’ll try to stay in bed (or rugged up in front of the computer, heh) and hopefully it’ll be alright by Monday. Not that I don’t have a lot of work to do tomorrow, but I can do that while all rugged up too.

Not that I can really afford not to go to work, but I don't have a choice. No voice = no sale!

“Blech” doesn’t even begin to cover it.

Friday, July 27, 2007

End of Week 1

Well, whaddaya know. I'm sick.

On Thursday morning I woke up with a slight sore throat, and despite deep misgivings, I dismissed it as dehydration and set out to drink as much water as possible to make it go away. Ha, yeah right. It got worse all day yesterday, and has now (Friday afternoon) developed into a full-on cold - sneezing, sniffling, coughing, and a raging burning sore throat of the sort that leaves a bad taste in your mouth. Yeesh.

On top of that, prac has started so I'm flat out. And . . . my Monday-Wednesday co-operating teacher has had to have a knee reconstruction and the Thursday-Friday one is on leave briefly, so I have this idiot of a relief teacher for the first two weeks. She’s really old-school so I don’t like her style at all, and despite being told repeatedly by me and the supervisor, she seems to have no idea what the prac is for. She wants me to have beautifully presented lesson plans which I carry out exactly to plan with no deviations (we’re supposed to use our plans as our own personal working documents with as many scribbles as we like, and we’re supposed to change our lesson plans on the spot if needs be, because flexibility is the reality of teaching). She keeps moaning that we prac students can’t possibly learn to be teachers if we’re not strictly required to do everything perfectly.

Um, maybe we’ll learn to be real teachers, and perhaps we won’t kill ourselves with overwork in the process?

My supervisor from uni knows what’s going on and she’s been very supportive, so at least I know I won’t be unfairly treated by the woman without having anyone step in and tell her where to get off. And the prac is only pass/borderline/fail, so I’m fine – no matter how much she whinges about this irrelevant stuff, I’m a damn good teacher and she knows it already, so she cannot legitimately do anything other than pass me, even if she only gives me satisfactories on the informal report.

By the time I start my six-week *real* prac, which is graded, the two normal teachers will be back. I get along with both of them excellently and I like their styles, so I’ll do fine. Eventually.

My lessons so far have gone brilliantly, though – it’s stupid niggly things that this teacher is determined to make me feel small about (she has that stupid tone of voice that some adults use when they’ve spent most of their career talking to children, and can no longer imagine that anyone younger than about 40 is not a child – I feel like a disappointing high school student every time she opens her mouth). I have a great rapport with the kids, my lesson planning is flawless from a pedagogical perspective, and I know what I’m doing. I just wish she’d let me get on with doing it, rather than subjecting me to a ten-minute lecture about why I shouldn’t cross out and change the title of my lesson plan!

I feel bloody awful. I probably won’t get much chance to blog during the week for the time being, but I’ll try to update on the weekend as much as possible.

Sunday, July 22, 2007


I went for another nature ramble on Wednesday, along a former railway line near where I live (it's now a well-maintained bridle trail). Unfortunately I forgot to check the camera's batteries, and thus I only have photos from the first 10 minutes of my walk. But I got some nice ones nonetheless, and here they are.

A tree near the bus stop.

Part of the old railway trail (it was a one-track steam railway).

Some wattle flowers, although not the ones truly native to the area. The place was simply alive with the scents I associate with home in winter - the honey-sweet scent of wattle flowers, wet clay, running water, crushed grass, sprouting lilies, damp earth.

A little waterfall in the winter creek that runs alongside the railway line.

More of the rocky creekbed. The creek is about half a metre lower now than it was in my childhood, but it's still beautiful.

Another stretch of the trail, showing one of the railway cuttings.

I'll have to do the walk again in two weeks' time, I think - it's supposed to rain all this week and into next week, so the creek will be higher when I go again. And this time I'll remember to take spare batteries, so that I can capture some of the things I missed, such as the vivid purple hovea growing from the granite outcrops, and the funny miniature swamps that are full of tadpoles.

I love my suburb :-)

PS: Amie: I'm very careful about not revealing where this actually *is* on this blog, as I don't want to be locatable. But I'm sure you'll recognise it!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Yeee :-D

As I think I've mentioned before, my university and the federal government are offering 13 prizes of $2000 each for students who are willing to try teaching the new primary school science modules during their long prac. In order to be eligible for the prize, you had to write an application letter back in May, and then get a distinction or higher for all aspects of the Science component of the science and social studies unit last semester.

I got a letter today letting me know that I did get distinctions in all of the science components, so I’m eligible to continue and be in the running for one of the prizes!

I’m relieved as I wasn’t sure the science half of my exam paper was good enough, but evidently it was lol.

Now all I have to do is run one of the new science modules with my Year 1 class in the coming 10 weeks (easy, the school already has it and hasn’t used it) and then submit a 1000-word “rich summary” of my experience.

I’m curious about how many people are actually in the running, given that there’s only so many people in the primary grad dip course in the first place, and some may have fallen out at any of the previous stages or may now feel that it’s just too much trouble to try to do this during the prac, which is full-on as it is. With a bit of luck and a lot of hard work, I might just get one of the prizes!

If I did, that would mean being able to spend rather more on a car than I otherwise would be able to. Which is a nice thought! 

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

To meme, or not to meme?

Getting involved with an internet meme is always a risky business, especially when said meme has been around for a long time. Later contributions to memes often become too specific and/or too repetitive and/or too cheezy, and don't hit the mark at all.

But nonetheless, I couldn't resist.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Feeling Weird

Before I get into my random musings, I'm disclosing that I'm utterly beyond exhaustion and into some strange realm beyond it. The past week has been insane, with its phys ed and dance and drama and music and a group presentation and work and two after-midnight bedtimes in three days. Tired doesn't even begin to cover it.

But the weird feeling isn't much to do with the tiredness, it's merely making it more pronounced.

I guess it's because the end of the year is coming closer. Within the next eleven weeks I'll find out which school I'm going to be teaching in next year, and the future will really be on my doorstep. It's well over 18 months since I decided to actually become a teacher, and probably around 20 years since I first had the idea of being one. Suddenly it's almost here, and the proximity is dizzying.

The feeling is not dissimilar to the breathless moment on some rollercoasters when the carriage has slowly ground its way to the top of the first hill, and is teetering in a momentary pause before plunging down the incline and onto its wild careening pathway.

This moment of inhalation before the plunge comes with a strong feeling that everything should be moving forward, and that some things will be left behind.

I’m thinking more and more about the things I want to leave behind.

The people who bring out the worst in me, and the people in whom I bring out the worst. The people who use me and the people who drag me down. The people who’ve grown so comfortable in their assumptions about me that they don’t know me at all, who speak to some imaginary me that exists only in their own minds.

Beyond people, there are feelings I want to leave behind. I’ve never been courageous enough to write this down before, but I’m a food addict. I want to leave that behind. I want to be healthy and to enjoy life without obsessing about what I’m going to taste next. I want to be as fit and active as I can be, not as I should be.

I want to leave behind the emotional issues that got me addicted to food in the first place. I want to learn to value myself, and to leave behind the childhood lesson that my parents didn’t value my presence, as much as they loved me. I want to leave behind the fact that my peers didn’t value my strengths because of my differences. I want to leave behind the fact that I didn’t value my own strengths because of my differences.

I want to leave behind my fears of inadequacy and failure and the traps and pitfalls of underachievement and misery that they cause.

I want to stop hiding and start living. I want to leave the darkness and emerge into the light. I want to go weeks without wanting to cry, not hours.

I want to get a life, and keep it for more than a year without everything falling apart. I want to build and grow and decorate and nest and create comfort. I want every day to be worth something.

I want to move on.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Nice comment

Anyone who's looked at my profile pic will know that I'm overweight. Not dreadfully so, just a bit of an extra layer all round. I don't look really bad, but the weight does show.

One of the problems with being overweight, apart from the obvious, is that people pigeon-hole you. If you're carrying a bit extra, you "obviously" eat badly, never exercise, spend too much time in front of the TV, etc. Show most people a picture of someone who isn't normal size or slender, and ask them if that person likes to play sport? The answer will almost always be "probably not".

I'm overweight for a number of reasons. I started gaining weight after the hand injury six years ago (which barred me from even the most gentle exercise for nearly a year), and continued to gain steadily until I went to Sydney, after which I gained a lot in a short time. There were two main contributing factors to the rapid weight gain - first, I comfort eat if I don't concentrate on stopping myself; and second, I ate too much of the wrong sort of foods when I was struggling to cope in Sydney. I was also on medication when in Sydney, which didn't help, and a series of injuries and a lack of money have stopped me from getting into sport with any regularity.

My weight hasn't gone up since I came back from Sydney, so I've now got the eating under control and I've been exercising more. I've even managed to lose a bit, but I'm still overweight.

Anyway, today I had a two-hour class on how to teach various phys ed strategies. I was nervous about it because I'm so chubby and un-sporty-looking, and because as an unpopular child I was always picked last for teams no matter how good I was at the sport. Despite that, and despite a dodgy hand and ankle, I put in my best effort today, and really enjoyed it (although I'm sore now!). I was the first to volunteer to demonstrate the triple-jump step, and the workshop leader got the class to applaud me for demonstrating how to dribble a soccer ball. I got my partner to make a W by balancing together, despite the fact that she was really nervous and didn't know how to lock her arms and legs straight; and I managed to muster 12 people into making the word FITNESS with their bodies. Among other things lol.

After the class, the workshop leader was standing near me, and he turned to me and said "I can see the sports in your background, you must have done a lot". That was SUCH a nice moment, as I realised that he'd seen past the fact that my tummy jiggles when I run and my thighs are enormous and I have a double chin if I hunch over. He'd seen the skills I was demonstrating, not the body that was demonstrating them. It's really, really nice to have someone see past the weight and appreciate something more important, especially when it's something that contrasts so strongly with the image of an overweight person. *happy*

I did do a lot of sport as a kid - between the ages of 5 and 17 I was always participating in at least one extra-curricular sport, and sometimes several at once. I never stayed in any for more than 2 years at a stretch until I was a teenager, but I acquired decent skills at all of them. Off the top of my head, I did ballet, gymnastics, soccer, tennis, calisthenics, jazz ballet, acrobatics and karate. I also went to a primary school (ages 5-12) which had a proud sporting history, and we did weekly sports that cycled through a whole range of activities, including athletics, cricket, hockey, volleyball, netball, basketball, soccer, AFL football, rounders/longball, softball, tee-ball, ballroom dancing, folk dancing, gymnastics and swimming lessons. And last year I did ballroom dancing lessons for most of the year. So I've got quite a bit of experience and skill in sport - despite my physical appearance!

It's nice to be recognised for that.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Sorry for the lack of bloggage!

I joined Facebook recently, and anyone who has experienced the addictiveness of that site will understand why I've forgotten to blog lately lol.

Holidays are over, and I'm back at uni for an intensive course called "The Arts, Health and Physical Education in the Curriculum". It's 8:30-4pm for 5 days - exhausting! But today was fun. We did a workshop session in which we brainstormed the health issues faced by primary students, then we went to the gym and learned some games that are useful for teaching fundamental motor skills; and then after lunch we had Introduction to the Arts (Mum keeps laughing at that, she has Harry Potter on the brain and keeps thinking I'm going to say "Dark Arts") in which we made emotion masks using only limited materials, then had to create group tableaus based on what our masks were like. We also learned the basics of drawing faces, by breaking the face down into sectors and finding the position lines that run through it. Below is the picture I drew of the girl sitting opposite me. Technically it’s a bit shaky, but it really does look like the girl I was drawing.

The point of all of this artistic stuff was to teach us how to get all four outcome areas (Arts Ideas, Arts Skills and Processes, Arts Responses and Arts in Society) out of one activity. We looked at how our own ideas were being put into the artworks, what skills we were using, how we reacted to other peoples’ artworks, and how those artworks related to arts in the wider community. Good stuff.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007


I've just packed Sis off to her Year Six social, looking far more like a dignified young lady than an 11-year-old has any right to look. I can't believe how grown up she's getting - it seems just the other day that she was a baby in my arms, and now look at her - another year and a half and she'll be at high school! Then again, when she was a baby *I* was still in high school, so I can't really complain.

9yo-brother has his school's theatre arts performance tonight, and Mum had to go to that, because James has to be here dance with Sis at the end of the social. So I've been pseudo-Mum all evening, getting Sis into her dress, doing her hair, and putting in her very first dangly earrings (today is the first day that the piercing studs came out - she only had them done ~6 weeks ago). I wish I could have captured the look on her face when she saw the first dangly earring in her ear. She couldn't believe how grown up she was getting either lol.

We’ve taken dozens of photos for Mum, and hopefully she’ll get home only a little while after Sis does so she can see her all kitted out. I may just have to post one here, if only to show everyone how much Sis looks like Hermione from “Harry Potter”. Impossible hair, intelligent eyes, impish grin . . . she’s a delight :-D

Oh, wow . . .

In primary school, I was a kind of odd, detatched little Aspergers kiddie, and as a result I was bullied and teased pretty much constantly, and was very unpopular.

There were two girls in particular who teased me more than others – “M” (who was the ringleader) and “A” (who was her sidekick).

With it being 10 years since my year group graduated high school, more and more of us are appearing on “find old school friends” type sites. I’m on several, and yesterday “A” spotted my profile on one of the sites, and emailed me to apologise for the teasing.

I’m sure most people who’ve been bullied fantasize about their tormentors apologising to them, and I was no different, but I never actually expected it to happen!

I wrote her a very nice, friendly email back, and I feel great. I’d long forgiven my primary school bullies as they were just kids, and kids can be really stupidly mean to each other, but it’s just so nice to hear from one of them that I didn’t deserve it.

This looks to be a 5-Star day so far! 

Saturday, June 30, 2007


While cleaning up after dinner today, we (Mum, James, Sis and I) were discussing the possibility of Sis and I going to see Pirates III at the cinema. Mum accidentally said "Harry Potter" instead of "Pirates" (we're watching the first HP tonight), which prompted me to suggest that it was only a matter of time until there was a spoof called "The Pirates of Azkaban".

This led to . . .

"The Return of the Fellowship of the Parrots of the Pirates of Azkaban".

After pronouncing this we all caught the rhythm of it and chorused:

"But it's too late, because they just passed by!"

(cake for anyone who can name the song we were quoting)

I love my family!

Edited to add two things:

1. I've realised that this post probably makes no sense to anyone who wasn't there. Oh well!

2. My wonderful uncle (who leads a Labor Party sub-branch, the one that had the meeting at which I met the rather nice guy from three posts ago) . . . sent me the link to the Facebook of aforementioned nice young man. "Nice young man" is not too young for me! *squee* There is hope!

Bedtime now . . .

Friday, June 29, 2007

Aww Jemmy

Jem has just come home from her desexing operation, and she's a pretty sad and sorry-for-herself kitten. She seems a bit restless, and won't just settle in her bed and go to sleep (which I think would make her feel better, but what does "mummy" know? lol) but keeps wandering around the room then stopping and licking the stitched area. Poor muffin.

And I'm in trouble, because she passed water while I was driving her home, and instead of being absorbed by the towel she was sitting on, it all ran out of her box and into the carpet of Mum's car. As if I could do anything about it! So Mum's all cranky as if I'm an irresponsible teenager. I want to point out to her that this is my first cat, whereas she's had cats most of her adult life, and that because she knows best and since it was her car, she should have thought of the problem and pre-empted it . . . but I don't think that would go down too well lol. *sigh* I've cleaned it up, anyway, and despite Mum's unwarranted cynicism, I'm pretty sure it's all gone, as is all the other dirt and grime and whatever that Mum has never had cleaned out of her car carpets!

Time Warp

I've experienced several time warp moments recently - moments in which I was revisiting places and routes I haven't been to in a long time.

On Wednesday, I decided to get my WA College of Teaching registration in no matter what, which meant visiting both the University of Western Australia and Curtin Uni to get my academic transcripts. I went by bus to both, and in between I visited the school I'll be praccing at, which is in a suburb I lived in for a while. All three locations were places I hadn't been for a while, and I hadn't taken any of the bus routes for even longer. All very strange and time-warpy.

Then, today, I went with Mum to visit the high school that Sis may be going to in a year and a half. I went to that school for two years (1993-4), and although I haven't grown more than a couple of centimetres since then, I was astonished at how out-of-scale everything appeared. The gym was about a third the size I thought it was, and the lawn where my friends and I used to sit was much smaller as well. I guess I felt smaller back then, even if I wasn't!

The tour whisked us through at such a pace that I hardly had time to reminisce, but we did go through all of the buildings, new and old, and we happened to go through or past a couple of my old classrooms. I could still remember which desk I sat at in Year 9 Science! It's shaken loose a lot of memories, which is good as I have a reunion for that school this year.

It was nice to see the school again, and especially to see what they've done since I'd been there. They have a simply outstanding set of resources for art, IT, music and drama among other things, and they're starting an academic extension programme, so I think Sis (who is extremely bright, very artistic, has perfect pitch and loves computers . . . AND her hair is blonde and curly, don't get me started . . .) will be very happy there. It's the local school, so most of her friends will be going there, but there are three other "available" public high schools in surrounding areas as well as the academic-select school in Perth . . . so we had to make a decision. Well, I say "we", I have nothing to do with the decision except having an opinion lol. When it comes down to it, it'll be up to Sis, with Mum and James' guidance.

In other news . . . implants notwithstanding, my problems at the moment are clearly hormonal. About half a dozen big lumpy pimples have popped up on my otherwise rather good skin, and I only ever get those when hormones are involved. *sigh*

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

So very moody . . .

WTF is wrong with me at the moment? I can't seem to stay in a stable mood for five minutes together. I'm constantly feeling stroppy or cranky or just plain angry, and I can't figure out why. I'd say it was hormonal, except that I have a 3-year contraceptive implant so I'm not supposed to *get* hormonal, not in the usual time-of-the-month way anyway. Everything is just frustrating me and pissing me off and I can't seem to concentrate. And I burst into tears at the slightest provocation. Gaaaah!

I did a 900-word rewrite of the problematic first chapter of my novel yesterday, while sitting cheerfully at the cafe inside Borders bookshop. Yesterday it was great writing, but today I'm not sure I like any of it. And yesterday evening I had a great time at a Labor Party meeting and met a really nice guy, but today I'm just frustrated because he's probably too young and I've got no idea when I'll see him again.

I wish I knew what to do to shake myself out of this moodiness. I could go for a walk, except it's going to rain . . . 

Of course, it also isn't helping today that the apparently OCD woman next door won't stop goddamn vacuuming. The constant noise is making me want to tear my hair out.

*wanders off to contemplate flour-bombing the house nextdoor*

Monday, June 25, 2007

Jemima Update

Due to various problems with managing Jemima's life inside this house, she's made the transition to being allowed outside this week. I don't really like her being outside - it's not good for the wildlife - but there's no other way to handle things at the moment. We're on a half-acre block on a quiet street, so at least it's pretty safe for her.

She's been an absolute hoot - it's been raining on and off so it's very damp out side, and her initial explorations yesterday were punctuated with little remarks of disgust about the fact that she was getting wet.

I kept going to find her yesterday to see if she was ready to come inside, and she would first miaow to let me know where she was, then start plaintively miaowing because she didn't want me to pick her up and take her inside! She's thoroughly enamoured of the outdoors life and fascinated by everything. She only came in well after dark yesterday because it started to really pour with rain. Poor Jem came streaking up to the back door utterly drenched, and was very pathetic and cranky for about an hour until the combined forces of my towelling, her cleaning and the bedroom heater dried her off again. This morning she couldn't wait to go outside, and she ran away when I tried to bring her in again. She can use the cat flap (as long as the other cat doesn't ambush her, which she did this morning, grr) so she'll come in when she's ready, I guess.

I feel like a parent whose child has gone out alone for the first time. It's scary but rather rewarding as well lol.

Friday, June 22, 2007


Well, that didn't last long. I "played Mum" to Sis this morning by walking her to school and buying her new school trousers from the uniform shop, and as a consequence of encountering dozens of small children in the process, I'm now clucky again. Grr.

Of course, there are two other factors contributing to it: one, I'm working with a pregnant girl at the moment (who is my age, a constant reminder of what I don’t have), and two, there's a "guy of interest" at uni (who's been in 3 of my workshops all year, workshops that ended just after I realised that he was of interest. *sigh*). He’s the first real “guy of interest” since Daniel back in February so I guess the lack of cluckiness could also have been due to a lack of anyone to trigger the hormones lol.

My long prac (4 weeks from now) is with Year 1 students (aged 5-6), who are tiny enough as it is, and many will have baby / toddler siblings. I’ll warn you all now, my hormones will be rampaging over the 8 weeks of prac. I’m going to be teary and cranky and this blog is going to be flooded with sobby overloaded entries bemoaning my current childlessness. Fair warning, so be prepared!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Nearly there . . .

I'm blogging from the uni computer lab this morning - Mum had to be in early. It's 8am and I've got an hour and a half to kill until my class starts at 9:30.

I've got classes from 9:30-12:30 today, and then the semester really is over and apart from work I'm really, truly almost free for two weeks. *sigh of relief*

I'm not feeling so droopy now that relief is almost in sight - even though I have assignments to work on, it's still a break and I'll still be able to get to do what I want for a while.

I'm also excited, as the preparations for one of my two high school reunions this year is ramping up. Unfortunately it's on the same night as my uncle's wedding reception, but I'll be able to leave the reception at an early-but-still-respectful time and go across to the reunion, which is only a couple of streets away. This reunion is for the high school I attended for year 8 and 9 (then had to switch schools) and I'm very excited about seeing all of those people again. Especially as many of them are people I also went to primary school with.

And I've sent a contact email to the girl who's organising the reunion at my other high school. Unfortunately she really disliked me at school, so hopefully she won't be an idiot about it after so long and do anything stupid like give me the wrong date. Lol. I'm not quite so excited about that reunion, as there's fewer people I'm really interested in catching up with, but it'll still be good. I just hope to God that they don't choose the same date as the other one!

I will say one thing: 10 years isn't as long as it used to be!

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Feeling Droopy

With exams over, it feels like I ought to be settling down for a nice solid break in which I can actually relax.

Instead I have a week of classes, then a two-week break in which I have to work on two assignments, then a week of classes, then a one-week break in which the two assignments are due; and then I'm on prac again. After 10 weeks straight of prac and classes, I finally get another two week break (in which I have to work on another assignment). Then I have another two weeks of classes.

I simply don’t know what happens after that, whether I have other assignments or exams to study for, or whether I’ll finally get a break then. Either way, it’s 19 exhausting weeks until I can even hope for some true relaxation. And bear in mind that I’ll be working Thursday nights and all day Saturdays throughout that time.

I’ve just had enough. I want this year to be over and the course completed, I want to know where I’m going to be placed so I can deal with it, and I want to be out there doing instead of being examined all the time.

I know it’ll feel different once I’m on Prac – the exhilaration of the experience will carry me through. But right now I’m just exhausted and sore and soul-achy. Not to mention ravenous due to this goddamn diet which gives me the right number of calories but no satisfaction whatsoever.

I just want it all to go away.

Friday, June 15, 2007

What I Want vs What I Really Want

Apologies to everyone who has a Spice Girls song stuck in their head due to the title. And apologies to everyone who didn’t after reading the title, but does now because of Apology #1.

I’ve been thinking a lot in the last day about my need to “plan” the future out in my head, to know what I’m going to be doing from year to year and how I’m going to do it. It’s hard to talk to people about it because I’ve found that they don’t understand that they’re not real plans, and it doesn’t matter if it doesn’t happen the way I imagine. I just need to have a plan.

The reason I’ve been thinking about it is that I’ve realised that my high-functioning autistic brother (9yo) does the same thing. He’ll start to fret about something so far in the future that it’s absurd (for example, he’s currently fretting about the fact that he doesn’t know how to get a job when he wants to start earning money). Mum or I will try to explain to him how it works, step by step, and he will repeat it back to us. Each time he hits something he doesn’t understand, we have to clarify, and after the clarification, he goes back to the beginning of the explanation and recites it with the new information, until he hits the next bit he doesn’t understand . . . then back to the beginning again.

I do exactly the same things when making these comfort-plans of the future. I’ll think my way through, work out a detail, go back to the start, think it through again, add another aspect, go back to the start . . . it’s not fretful worrying for me, but otherwise it’s the exact same process.Tends to indicate that it’s an autism spectrum thing, which explains why most people find it weird lol.

Right now I’m struggling with the fact that there’s the plan I ostensibly want, which is sensible and fits cultural norms and such; and then there’s the plan I really want, which people will find strange and old-fashioned but actually fits my character and temperament far better.

Plan A is the one I’ve discussed before – teach in the country a bit, teach in London a bit, come back, teach while having a respectably middle-sized family and using childcare so that I can keep working for a lot of the time. Then there's Plan B. It goes like this: I go to the country to teach, fall in love with both the town and someone in it, teach for a while then stop work and be a stay-at-home-writing-Mum to a largeish family (apart from some relief teaching if there’s someone I can leave the kids with), then go back to teaching in however many years once the youngest is in pre-primary.

Now, most people would be horrified at the idea of my pursuing plan B – big families (I’m only talking 6 or 7 mind, not 15!) are politically incorrect, and intelligent women aren’t supposed to want to be stay-at-home Mums. Plus it’s financially “unwise”. But I know myself, and I think I’d thrive on that lifestyle.

And I’m wavering on London, simply because of the hassle of it all. Plus there’s one major problem with the London plan – Jemima would have to go into quarantine for 6 months when I came back to Australia, and that’s a nasty thing to do to a cat. I’m not capable of putting my cat through anything like that, nor could I give her away. So the chances are I’d feel trapped in London in the end because I wouldn’t want to move back in Jemima’s lifetime. And that just doesn’t work any way you look at it.

I’ll have LOTS of holidays as a teacher, and with careful budgeting while I’m still young and child-free I’ll be able to travel Europe plenty. Do I really need to live there? Really? Deciding to go to London was a get-out plan because I was scared that I’d get trapped in country WA with no prospects of meeting anyone. And I can keep it as that – if in a couple of years I feel trapped, I go to London, and deal with the hassle. Fine. But right now I want a big country property with chickens to feed and a veggie garden to tend and a house full of kiddies. And I can’t stop wanting it just because other people think it’s not right.

Nor can I stop comfort-planning it because people find it strange!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

All done

My exams are over for the semester, and I'm feeling quite relieved and relaxed. Yay!

I also got my placement today for THE prac (the 8-week one, the one that really matters). I once again discovered the value of going in and talking to the placements officer face to face. When I filled out the form, I’d put down that I’d prefer Year 4/5, Year 6/7 or Year 1-3 in that order. However it seems that year 4/5 teachers are the scarcest for placements, and she really didn’t want to put me in another 6/7 class (since I haven’t done anything else) so she was having a lot of trouble placing me. She suggested a school that she thought might be too far away, and which was a Year 1 class so she didn’t think I’d want it. But I’m happy to teach Year 1 – I want to build a career teaching Years 4-7, but I need experience at both ends of the spectrum as I can’t be sure I’ll get a job placement in that age group to start with. And the school happens to be a short and straightforward bus and train trip from home, and is also in the same suburb as the private school my brother goes to. So it’s super convenient, and she was able to put my name down for it on the spot.

It’s an inner-suburbs school with a high immigrant population but which also intakes from a reasonably wealthy area of new riverside housing, so it should be an interesting mix. I’m glad to have it settled!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Three down, one to go

I was really fretting about today's exam (maths curriculum) - the other exams are all open book or page-of-notes exams, so this was the only wholly memory-based exam I've had to do since 2001. I really had no idea whether I'd prepared adequately or not.

However, despite all my stressing, the exam was easy, and I was finished and out the door an hour and ten minutes into the writing time (it was a 2 hour exam). I’m relieved!

The last exam is English Curriculum tomorrow morning, and it’s open book and three essays so I’m not too worried.

Next week I’ve got two intensive maths days and two intensive English days, and then I’ve got two weeks’ break – my last break of any sort (apart from Sundays) until mid-October. I’m going to enjoy those two weeks to their fullest – lots of writing, lots of rambling walks, lots of photography. Then – the long haul of Professional Internship begins.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Who's Who?

It really is fascinating reading the statistics log for this blog, and seeing why and from where people come here.

Many of you are RL friends who've been given my blog address, or friends from one of the sites (BtN, NaNoWriMo, Notebook) who've clicked on the link in my profile on one of those websites. Others are friends from one or the other, and who've googled 'Archaeochrisell' to get here. I’m also seeing a few hits from old classmates who’ve clicked on the link on the Eastern Hills SHS reunion page. Hi guys! And then there’s the folks who’ve arrived here by googling or blogsearching a set of keywords, either related to me (someone blogsearched ‘archaeology’ + ‘Christine’ + the name of my university – nice work!) or unrelated (the Prosh post got quite a few hits for that reason).

Anyway, everyone’s welcome, and if you’re a regular visitor (or just passing through) and want to let me know you’re here, I’d love it if you’d post a comment to this post to say ‘hi’. You don’t have to of course, but it’d be nice for me! 

Monday, June 11, 2007


Right now, I have a pretty clear idea of what I want from life in the coming years. I want to finish my degree, spend 1.5-2.5 years teaching in the south west of WA, then to go to London and teach there for an unspecified number of years. Then I want to come back to WA and teach in the south west again. Somewhere in all that I want to meet someone, fall in love and get married, and once I’m back in the south west I want to have kids, up to about 4 of them, who will go to the local primary then to a private high school.

That’s just a rough outline of what would be the absolute best pathway for me, as seen from right now (and as with all such things, is subject to change without notice).

But it leaves out something that I want, something that’s unlikely to the point of impossibility. That’s why it’s left out, of course, but I can’t help yearning for it. It is: to change the number of children to 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 . . . no more than 10, but more than 4.

Four is a good number – you can still fit them in an ordinary house or ordinary large car, they tend from what I’ve seen to have good dynamics, and the expenses won’t blow the budget. But I can’t help, deep down, really wanting a much larger family than the sensible ‘4’.

I want to be able to afford for my children the things I see as important: the ability to say ‘yes’ to sport / music / arts lessons if they ask for them, the ability to dress them normally and send them to good schools, the ability to take them on good holidays. And barring occasional rare cases, you just can’t do that with a big family on an ordinary couple’s salaries. And on the flipside, I don’t want to wind up with a family of kids who slave away at the family business after school or who can’t enjoy ordinary extracurricular stuff because they’ve got too many siblings. That’s very wrong in my books.

So . . . it’s a secret yearning, tucked quietly away where it can’t do any harm, and never to be satisfied. But it’s there nonetheless.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Second exam this afternoon

I have Learning & Assessment Processes this afternoon, and I can't say I'm looking forward to it. It's the most dull, dry, buzzword-bingo-ish, fussy and useless of the subjects. I understand why they teach us theory, but most of it isn't useful theory. Hands-on practical stuff, please!

Fortunately it's also one of my two best subjects and it's an open-book exam, so it shouldn't be too painful. But . . . you only have to write two essays, and you have an hour for each one. Ouch!

Thursday, June 7, 2007

I forgot . . .

. . . the exam went well, too. Lol.

I'm finding myself in a very peaceful mood at the moment, almost serene. It's pleasant, if a little mysterious! I've been puzzling out some of the reasons, and here are some of the things I've discovered.

1: Every day I'm getting a little closer to being completely at peace with Aspergers. It's been 9 months since it finally hit me that I wasn't the only neurotypical in my family, but was actually a marginally better-adjusted Aspie. Since then I’ve gone through periods of rebellion and self-suppression (when I was determined that Aspergers wouldn’t stop me from learning to be completely normal) but finally I’m starting to realise that what I really need to do is to be ME, Aspergers and all. Yes I’m a bit quirky and weird, yes I value accuracy out of all proportion, yes there are parts of me that may never grow up. But that’s who I am, and it’s really nothing shameful. I can be myself, be happy, and function in the world all at once.

2: For the first time since I was fifteen, I’m not clucky (that’s a family word meaning “longing for a baby”). I don’t cry at adverts with kids in them! I’m also not feeling particularly lonely or lovelorn, which is unusual for me when I’m single. I don’t know why I’m feeling this way, but I think the drop in cluckiness is partly due to Jemima. Not that she takes the place of a baby, but having to account for her in everything has made me realise that there are so many things I want to do in my life, and they’re all extremely hard do with a kitten to account for – and she lets me leave her at home alone all day! I may be ready for babies in other ways, but I’ve realised that I can also enjoy my freedom while I’ve still got it. There’s a lot to life that can’t happen if you’re locked down into white-picket-fence mode.

I’ve also identified the fact that the one common thing in all the bad relationships I’ve had has been that the guys have been obsessed with the power relationship between us. ‘B’ and ‘N’ wanted me to be powerful and wonderful, and put me on a pedestal; and ‘C’ and ‘D’ wanted to be powerful and played mind games to keep me off-balance and weak (‘C’ far, far worse than ‘D’, of course). The best relationship I’ve had, that with ‘E’, had no power balance issues, but fell down due to his religious problems with his mother (Jewish mama’s boy . . .). So somehow I’m attracting guys or being attracted to guys who prefer relationships with uneven power balances. I don’t want that, so I need to look out for it in the future.

3: I’ve come to better understand depression, and I’ve realised that I have two types. The first, which I’m calling ‘situational’, is when I get swamped by unhappiness due to things that are happening now or which happened in the past. That sort is easily treatable with counselling, to work through the issues and put them behind me. The second sort, however, doesn’t have anything to do with situations, although it feeds on them. It’s the real, clinical depression, that deep-seated sad soreness that never quite goes away, and can flare up at any time. Understanding this makes it easier to deal with – I no longer beat myself up for feeling awful over nothing. I’m allowed! I can also look for signs of the real depression and deal with it before it finds a situation to feed on, which helps.

4: I’ve also been through a bit of a watershed recently, in that I’ve realised that some of my ‘fringe friends’ (ie the friends that are part of the same group I’m a part of, but aren’t my direct friends) aren’t really nice people at all, and I’ve given up all intention of seeing them. Finding out that I had unpleasant ‘friends’ has freed me up to make some nice, real friends! Funny, how one can forget that friends don’t have to be narky and argumentative and critical . . . lol. I’m really enjoying the friendships I’ve started at uni.

So overall I feel calm and pleasant and capable. It’s good!

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Ha. I think.

So, I'm sitting in my exam today, having just finished the first question. One of the invigilators (neutral supervisors that make sure you don't cheat, escort people to the toilets, collect papers etc) was coming along my row silently collecting peoples' attendance cards and checking their IDs.

When she got to mine, she looked at my student card, went "Christine! Good luck" and moved on. I looked at her, looked at her name badge, looked back at her, and suddenly realised that she was my Dad's ex-girlfriend, Karen.

Those of you who know a bit of my history will know who - and what - I mean when I say 'Karen'. For those who don’t: the woman was a loony. I used to call her manic-depressive, and although she might not have been, medically speaking, it was certainly the way she behaved. She was also an alcoholic manipulative bitch, and she put my family through hell in the year after Mum left. She would make Dad come and stay with her (with my brother and I in tow, I was 13 and Steven was 10/11) and then fight with him and kick us all out in the middle of the night. Or she would break into our house when we weren’t there, and we’d come home to find her smoking on our verandah or getting drunk on our living room floor.

Dad needs to be needed, and Karen needed him big time – they got involved after she rolled her car while under the influence, with her son as a passenger (her son was a schoolmate of Steven’s), and was told that she had to find someone to take her son for a few nights because she was being temporarily relieved of custody of him. Dad was the person she called, and from that point on things just got worse. Dad wasn’t able to balance up his responsibility to Steven and I with his need for Karen, and neglected us quite a bit (not to the point where we went hungry or didn’t have new clothes or anything, but he would leave us alone in the middle of the night to go visit her, even when we were sick, and he was constantly dragging us to and from her house, regardless of homework or tests or whatever). Eventually he decided that we had to go live with Mum, because he couldn’t handle having custody of us while Karen was so needy. You can imagine how that felt.

About 6 months after I went to live with Mum, Karen decided that all of her problems in the on-again-off-again relationship with Dad were Mum’s fault. Mum, by this time, was married to James and had a baby on the way, and barely had any contact with Dad at all. Go figure. Anyway, she started phoning us up late at night and early in the morning to harangue us. We tried whistling down the phone to get her to stop, and eventually took out a restraining order (which, when she breached it, the police refused to prosecute . . . *sigh*).

The last I heard from Karen was when I was about 17 and living with Dad for a while (who was by that time also remarried, to someone else). He still had occasional contact with Karen because she owed him a lot of money, and at that point she was still trying to convince me that she really did like me and had never meant any harm and didn’t know why I hated her so much. Blech. Pathetic and evil.

I lost a good 5 minutes of my exam time to simply being bewildered at the sudden manifestation of Karen, at my university, in my exam, in MY SPACE. But thankfully, she seemed almost meek, and when I saw her afterwards on the walkway she didn’t even try to talk to me. Perhaps it’s because Dad got the money back a few years ago with a court order, so she knows she’s really got no avenue into our lives any more; or perhaps she’s actually grown up and moved on.

Either way, it was a weird and surreal experience, and I sincerely hope she’s not in any more of my exams. I don’t want her to get over the surprise of seeing me and decide to talk! Apologies are meaningless at this point, and attempts at justification are both tiresome and sickening. I don’t want to talk to her, and I’m fiercely glad that she didn’t talk to me.

It’s a weird world. And a small city!

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Exam tomorrow

I have the first of four exams tomorrow - Social Studies and Science curriculum, 8 short essays over three hours. It's my first exam since November 2001 and I'm fairly nervous about it. I think I'll do okay, but I'm still not happy.

Just writing notes this evening (to take into the exam) has made both my wrist and my elbow very sore, so I'm not looking forward to the exam experience one little bit. I'm going to be very sore tomorrow.

Anyway, wish me luck and I'll try to keep the updates coming over the next week-and-a-bit until exams are over.