Welcome! You have found the home of 'Being Me', Fran Hill's blog. If you like what you read, you will enjoy my new book 'Miss, What Does Incomprehensible Mean?' to be published by SPCK Publishing on 21 May 2020. My website is at www.franhill.co.uk. Come and visit for more Fran info!
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Reasons why I may take the long route to work tomorrow
So, I was walking to school, trogging along the path in my frumpy middle-aged way, loaded down with a rucksack full of marking, planning and a Very Big Packed Lunch sheaf of report-writing, and feeling as supple and flexible as a recent corpse. What's more, it was windy, and that all added to my struggle.
And, as I lolloped down the path, who should I see ahead of me, actually ON my path and blocking my way?
Well, imagine two of these.....
.... wearing some of this ....
... only in pink ...
and you'll have an accurate picture of the two size-0 women, hermetically sealed in Lycra, who were doing early morning exercises in the park, bending and stretching themselves into such impossible positions that I actually wondered if they were melting.
Well, I thought, as I approached them. Any minute now they, as youthful and fit and flexible as they are and I aren't, will move aside and let me pass so that I don't have to change course and struggle up onto the grass verge just to get past them.
But no. They carried on doing their impressions of elastic bands while I walked past, huffing and puffing under the weight of my sandwiches marking, and trying not to think, as I passed them, that juxtaposition of this kind did me no favours at all when I am walking to work and needing to Feel Good in order to face the day ahead. Is this, I thought, how hippos feel when walking past the flamingo enclosure?
I got into school and it all became so much worse. A caretaker said to me as I walked down the corridor, 'Still windy out there, then?' 'Yes, yes,' I said, conversationally, thinking how nice it was to chat to someone about the weather. Then I passed a mirror and saw the state of my hair.
All this, before 8am. Is it a cruel world, or is it a cruel world?
I watched a wasp die on the bus yesterday morning.
I know, as an opener, it's not the same as 'Hey, did you see the latest episode of Game of Thrones? but it's all I have to offer.
I'm nervous about wasps. I'm sure, if they could talk, they'd say they were nervous about me too. But all I have in my armoury is a rolled-up newspaper and a bad aim. They have a stinger. And, close up, they're pretty scary.
A wasp in a field, I can cope with. A wasp in the garden, just about.
But a wasp on the bus is a cross wasp. (Move along, Dr Seuss.)
I saw it progressing along a window two seats in front of me. It was crawling my way.
I don't mean, crawling in the way I'd crawl, as in 'Oof, oof, my knees, and how will I ever get up from this position?' I mean, crawling towards me.
I expected a confrontation. I picked up the copy of the Metro I'd collected when I got on the bus and began rolling.
Happy New Year to you all! Yes, I know it's the 8th already, but saying Happy New Year only at New Year is so Last Year.
I thought I'd kick off 2020's blog posts with a story from the classroom about two boys called Scott and Randall. It's fictional but not fictional .... there are Scotts and Randalls in every school and I've taught many of them. People like Scott and Randall are what make teaching both extraordinarily joyful and extraordinarily maddening.
Imagine yourself in a secondary school classroom on a rainy Thursday.
The pupils are hard at work delighted when there's an 'incident'.
Scott and Randall provide a welcome 'incident'
Within two minutes of entering the classroom, Scott had to be ejected.
d'you do that for?' Randall had swung round, clasping his shoulder, to face Scott.
managed three words of my introduction to the lesson's activities. ('First, I'd
At this very moment, I have no idea what I am about to write. I just thought, as it's been so long, I had better put fingers to keyboard and say something.
I think this process is called 'free writing'. It may also be called 'How to Lose Lots of Followers at Once'.
Snap decision. I am going to tell you about my meals. For breakfast, I had some Mini Shredded Wheat. These are essentially like little parcels of thin string, fashioned into what looks like a cushion. You pour milk on them, and you eat them. Habits like this, which we Brits have, are presumably what make foreigners think we are weird. While they are buttering croissants and drinking posh coffee, or spreading maple syrup on a fresh waffle, we are eating parcels of string, and still calling ourselves civilised.
At breaktime, at school, all I had time for was to eat a chocolate frog. One of my colleagues keeps a box of chocolate frogs (called Freddos) .. (the chocolate frogs, not the colleague) ..…