All Roads Lead To London
We got a "lot" of snow on Thursday - 4 inches is the most London has seen in 7 years (if it had been the 6-8 predicted, it would have been the most in about 100 years), and every person in the city got in touch with their inner child. Everybody in our staff complained about not being able to play outside, and several spontaneous snowball fights erupted before the children started coming through the gates.
It was one of those days when people forget to ignore each other on the buses, and strangers give each other the "how cool is this?!" smile in the streets (as they walked under umbrellas to ward off the snow). The children were over the moon with excitment, carrying loads of snow in their arms, making snowmen, or just standing, staring up at the snowflakes falling to the ground in absolute wonder. It was one of those days that felt special. Even the Head Teacher felt it - he allowed them to play outside during Morning Break, despite the growing amounts of slush. For 15 minutes, the children played in more snow than they had ever seen before. Every teacher was outside with them.
In the staff room at lunchtime, we sat with our warm cups of tea (they really do drink tea constantly here) and talked about the travel chaos that had ensued that morning. They were really impressed that I had managed to make it all the way here with a half hour to spare. Taking the Tube was apparently the only way to get around, since the roads were in terrible shape all over the country. One teacher commented that every road leading to London was blocked up with traffic for miles. During that conversation, I learned that every city outside of London has a road going through it that leads right to here (at least according to some of my colleagues). So wherever you are in England, you can always find The City. It was an interesting parallel to my life - where everything seems to lead to a place called London...
I sat there, listening to the conversations around me, thinking about how nice it would be to stay on with this staff (and school) for as long as possible. Going back to Canada means that I won't have a school anymore - nowhere that I belong. I'll be up against hundreds of other teachers just to get a supply teaching position. Which is okay, but it's hard to choose to leave a place where I know for sure I'll be able to work every day.
Since we're on that topic - Jeremy and I have been talking constantly about The Decision, and have changed our minds a dozen times this week alone. We gave ourselves a deadline though, and yesterday was it (okay, well actually it was last Sunday, but we extended it.).
I walked in the door after a looong last day of classes (before our half term break) with a bag of warm takeaway food and a 7 pound (price, not weight) bottle of vodka; tired, hungry, and ready for a relaxing evening.
"So have you decided what we are going to do?"
"Yep, I think I have. Have you?"
"Definitely. And I really think it's the right choice."
"So where are we going to live after this summer?"
"Fine. I think we should..." *
* We're thinking we should tell our families first.