Today would have been a terrible day even if he wasn't gone.
I could have titled this post "Melinda and the No-Good-Very-Bad-Day".
After a very teary goodbye this morning, I forced my feet to walk out the door, knowing that I'd need to get myself together or I'd need to try and reapply makeup on the train (a feat I've never tried and don't really want to). Expecting to have a not-so-pleasant ride to school, I grabbed a newspaper in hopes that it would distract me from my life for a little while. Then I heard an announcement:
"Ladies and gentleman. There are severe delays on the Victoria Line, with no service running between King's Cross and Walthamstow Central. You will need to find alternate routes this morning. We apologize for the inconvenience."
I never swear in public, but I couldn't stop the "FUCK" from coming out of my mouth, following by "Are you freaking KIDDING ME?!"
I ride the Victoria Line to Walthamstow Central every single day on the way to school (between taking the Central Line and a bus), so this news was really really bad. Since I had no idea how I was going to get to school. Reaching for my mobile, I noticed that it wasn't there. In my overly emotional state, I had forgotten it on our kitchen table. This brought things from bad to worse - since I had no idea how I was going to call the school to let them know I was running late...
Being the sort of person who has good directional sense helped me map out a plan to take a different train line to a place called Finsbury Park, where the Victoria line intersects. Using the logic that I could just switch to the proper train line if it was running, or at least catch a bus from that point had me feeling pretty proud of myself (considering the previously mentioned emotional state). Upon arrival, I quickly learned that the Victoria line was still not running at all, so it was time to find a bus...
I should mention that I'm not as good at figuring out the hundreds of buses that travel through the streets of London each day. After asking one of the Underground workers, I had to get back on the train for two more stops, than catch a bus to get to Walthamstow, where I would have to catch yet another bus. And almost definitely be late.
I finally caught a break while riding on the first bus. It passed the second to last stop on the Victoria Line, Blackhorse Road, a station I often travel to from school, since there is a bus that runs directly between. A bus that I realized I could probably catch and get to school on time. A bus that was on its way to the nearest stop as I was crossing the street, so I got to do the "worker dash" (running at top speed in dressy looking clothes and not-good-for-running schoes while carrying a business bag) up the street. Getting on that bus was the first good thing of the day, and as it turned out - I did get to school on time.
I ran into the classroom at 9:01am (we bring the kids in right around that time, but there is no bell, so we're often anytime between 9:00 and 9:05 each morning. As luck would have it, the kids were just starting to line up, so nobody except my teaching assistants had any idea about my hellish trip.
Then more bad luck struck as the Headteacher popped in to let me know that I was going to be evaluated on a literacy lesson and could I 'please rearrange the schedule to make sure it was being taught between 10-11am'.
I don't mind being evaluated, but since I'm a supply teacher I really didn't expect to be evaluated at all. The lesson went okay, but the kids were chattier than normal, and things took a lot longer to get completed.
They were like that all day, partly due to the rain that we haven't had in ages, and the fact that I was probably giving off funny vibes (even though I obviously never let any of those emotions show). One kid who is particularly challenging had a really rough day, which always makes things run less smoothly.
As it turns out, the visitor during my lesson didn't think much of it, although she did like my rapport with the children and how I kept their attention. woohoo. I did finally get some good constructive criticism about my lessons, which were kindly given with the comment "I know you are working at a disadvantage and without the benefit of additional help and training, so don't worry about it". Plus, it seems that some people are going out of their way to tell the Headteacher about how well I'm doing. So it wasn't necessarily a problem that the visitor didn't like my lesson - just added to the general crappiness of the day.
Then I dropped half of my photocopies into a puddle on the way back to class after lunch, knocked a chair over while walking in the classroom, stubbed my boot and scuffed it beyond repair on the pavement while getting off the bus, had to walk in the rain because I forgot my umbrella, and walked into an empty flat at the end of a very long day.
Now it's 9pm and part of me just wants to curl up in a ball and cry. I know the nights will be the hardest, and it's been a very long time since I was alone when going to sleep, so this is going to take some getting used to. Right now when I think about going out with Eve or some other friends and returning to this place, it makes me feel sick to my stomach knowing that he won't be here.
Funny how the presence of a person turns a "place" into a "home".