It’s the last day of school; you’re sitting quietly in the classroom at the edge of your seat, eyes glued to the clock. The ticking seems to be getting louder and louder and the hand is crawling, as if in slow motion. You’re waiting, waiting for the final bell of the school year to go: the signal that it’s the holidays, the summer holidays.
It’s been over 10 years since I left school, but I’m getting that unmistakable summer holiday buzz. That feeling of waiting impatiently for that final bell to go so that I can dash out of the school grounds and enjoy my five-week, well earned break.
It’s funny, when I left school I never thought I’d set foot on school grounds – never mind voluntarily – again. And I certainly never imagined I’d experience that distinct summer holiday excitement, exclusive to my school days ever again. But after completing my first term as a fully-fledged schoolmarm, and at the cusp of a well-earned five week summer holiday, that feeling is palpable.
I did it; I survived my first term of teaching! It feels like quite an accomplishment and I’m pretty impressed with myself for making it. I must have done a half decent job as the school have lined me up to continue teaching in Term 1, starting at the end of January.
On my way to work this morning, on the last day of school, I had to stop in at the mechanic to get the bumper of my car bolted back on – not as dramatic as it sounds. While waiting, I popped into the little café next to the mechanics to get a coffee. In our current cashless society, I like many others, rarely carry cash, so I was somewhat surprised when the café owner said they didn’t have Eftpos facilities. On hearing I was a local and waiting for my car to be fixed the barista bartered with me; either I come by later and pay for the coffee or I could pop into the Servo and buy him a Powerade in return for a coffee. Much amused I popped next door and got him a purple Powerade.
It felt like it should already be the holidays as I sat outside on the verandah in the morning sun, listening to the birds and looking out at the trees swaying in the breeze. Tomorrow I’ll be on my way to the coast to spend Christmas with my mum, sister, her partner and my gorgeous nephew. After about six Christmas’s Down Under and living here for over two and a half years, I still can’t get used to Christmas in the sun. There is something just not right about it being hot and going down to the beach at Christmas. It’s supposed to be cold outside with snow on the ground, while you sit inside in front of an open fire curled up with a good book where it’s warm and cosy with the smell of Christmas baking wafting through the house.
The bell is about to go, I’m sitting at the edge of my chair – like I did all those years ago at school – watching the clock on my computer screen crawl from 3.19 to 3.20. I’m going to press the ‘Publish’ button and then dash out the door, into my car – with a secure bumper – and home to the pub for a well earned glass of Vino Bianco before finishing off my packing and going to bed on time as I have an early start in the morning.