End of Term Updates

Things are so busy at the minute, with school exams and Spanish lessons that my real life has become a series of snatched thoughts which are scribbled down and spat out as fragmented blog updates. Here are offerings for this week.


  • One of my students told me I was the heroine of the class because I saved them from their previous teacher and ‘his bad teaching’ (their words not mine) He said I’ve basically ‘saved them from a life of failure’.
  • This is the first time I’ve ever lived in an apartment block. There are 38 apartments here. I’ve never realised before how much you rely on other people when you live together. You rely on them not to leave the big front door open and let in a psycho killer, you rely on them not to fall asleep with a cigarette in their hand and burn the whole place down. It’s weirdly unsettling and also empowering to be part of a weird little community.
  • During our test revision session this week the year 8’s were doing chapter summaries. One of them asked if it were important to ‘include the gang bang in chapter 8’ Let me make it clear: there is no such activity happening in our book. You have no idea how fast my jaw hit the floor….I don’t really want to know how he knows that word.
  • Found my favourite piece of homework ever!! This came from a kid, who swears he’s been using the dictionary to complete his vocabulary work.

WORD – Brutal

DEFINITION – an animal

SENTENCE – I like brutals but I guess I kind of like all animals.

  • I’m doing a language exchange with one of the teachers at school. She practices her English for an hour and then I practice Spanish. Her name translates into English as ‘Sweet Sunday’, which is adorable, no? Surprisingly she hates it.
  • Taught drama outside in the sunshine on the 17th of December. Life is blissful.
  • Love how the Spanish word for umbrella is “paraguas” which means ‘for water.’ Language is so cool.
  • Saw an English Language production of The Christmas Carol. Every time the Scrooge character said “Bahumbug” it sounded like ‘buy handbag’. I now need to shop for handbags….and shoes to match.
  • I’m kinda sad that some of the Spanish words I know from my time in Mexico aren’t used here. For example beans aren’t ‘frijoles’, right now isn’t ‘ahorita’ and bar isn’t ‘cantina’, when someone slams a drink down in one no one shouts ‘Fondo”. Sad times.
  • Went and saw a band with some of the people from work. The band sings in English and the lead singer learns the songs phonetically. Got into a whole Spanglish discussion with one of my colleagues about Creep by Radiohead and why he sings “so fucking special” instead of just ‘so special’ It’s interesting how a word we use for emphasis can cause so much confusion with speakers of other languages.
  • That moment when you realise you’ll never make is as a novelist, because you sit down to FINALLY work on the novel and then realise you’ve only been writing it on your iPad which you left snugly at home on your desk in Ireland.
  • The other moment when you realise there are only two more sleeps before you go home for Christmas holidays. Happy Sunday everyone.

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