Monday, October 24, 2005
Fulham - here we come!
We've found a cozy, furnished room in Fulham. It's in Zone 2, so the usual exorbitant rent applies, but overall it'll still save us over 200 pounds a month, in comparison to what we are paying now! Even better, my journey to work will be reduced down to about 20 minutes, straight up on the District line to Notting Hill. This is going to be living in London proper, which I reckon we might as well do while we're here - to try all that city living has to offer. It'll be a totally new experience to be just about in the thick of things, as neither Tito nor myself have ever really lived in a big city before. The room is above a shop (which, incidentally sells imported Buddhist paraphenalia - hope the vibes drift upwards!) and less than 5 minutes walk to the tube - a walk past a dangerous-looking Turkish delight shop, as well as copious other enticing bars, shops and restaurants. It's an extremely pleasant and convenient area. We'll miss the quiet and leafy greenness of Crystal Palace, but we realise that type of living is more appropriate for those who have a good reason to be there: car or flat ownership, or perhaps a pet or children who require close proximity to the park (which is, btw, happily due to getting a good sprucing up in time for the Olympics). Tito and I have enjoyed relaxing in our flat over the summer months; getting used to being in the U.K. and having some privacy at long last. Onto our next adventure - we move in on the 28th, which is my 28th birthday - that's got to be a good omen!
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Stream of Consciousness
Enjoyed (?) the Banksy exhibition on the weekend (which involved lots of reworked 'old masters' paintings and a small stinking room filled with rats), meeting my old friend Caroline and her lovely bloke for a civilised catch-up, and a super salsa-ing night at the little South American nightclub 'Tito's', but that all feels like an age ago now... it's hump day once more. I am absolutely living for the weekends at the moment, as work/commuting/life is so hectic. It's great to finally be busy working again; I've earned more this month than ever before in my life! It's just a shame that the terms are so short. I wouldn't be able to do this job for much less, due to that, and the fact that the cheekiness and machismo I have endured really do go beyond my limits of endurance. But, at least it's interesting - my life of late has been a bit of an emotional rollercoaster again. Even more so, as we are looking for another place to live, which I find ridiculously stressful. Where to live in such a vast metropolis? Why must it be so bloody expensive? Why do I feel so much like a little scurrying ant these days? A few days ago, as I was coming up at Notting Hill Gate tube, a man was shouting down at everyone passing "Londoners! Stop rushing around! Stop going to work! Stop moving around all the time!". I thought he had a jolly good point, though I felt I couldn't not go to work simply because a random mentalist had told me not to.
Thursday, October 13, 2005
I'm afraid the gloss is rapidly wearing off my shiny new students. I'm still enjoying it, but it becomes difficult to maintain my cool when I have students such as young Ali... who informed me in no uncertain manner yesterday "I shouldn't take orders from you, you're a woman".
Don't be shy, lad, tell us what you really think! Well, bless him, he's probably only voicing what the rest of the predominantly Islamic, all male students in that class believe! I can't expect my boss to support me against this kind of harassment, either, seeing as he's a total maniac and has already given me shit (albeit through another colleague) for being 'impatient' with the students. My boss refused to give me all the hours I wanted 'because you're a woman'
he explained, and also calls all females 'Darling'.
My days here are numbered, methinks!
Friday, October 07, 2005
All the Tea in Chinatown
I got to thinking that my Wednesday night meetings with Amy and Hannah are just like Sex and the City... well, except rather than a swanky, glam bar in Manhattan, we frequent a bean-paste-bun cafe in Chinatown. And, instead of fancy cocktails, our tongues are loosened by up to three pots of fragrantly steaming jasmine tea. (We're not really into drinking too much these days, you see - detox is all the rage!). There isn't a great deal of talk about raunchy sex either, though, come to think of it. Although I believe the word has been mentioned, once or twice. So then, it's completely different then, isn't it
, I hear you protest! I suppose you're right. Seemingly somewhat inferior - yet infinitely more satisfying than a shiny, scripted TV programme where the friendships are equally shiny and scripted (and thus pleasingly predictable, but ultimately false). I guess the thing that's the same is the colourful, fun conversation; the gorgeous, vivid female companionship. SATC was, of course, mostly about surrounding yourself with friends who try to listen without judging, who allow, and sometimes help, you to change - and support you through those changes. Friends who give advice based on what they think would be best for you, as a unique person, and don't just churn out their pre-fabricated opinions. Watching friendship on TV is one thing. Experiencing it first-hand is entirely another - you can't control what people say or do, how they feel, who they love, or where they go. You can't press pause, stop, delete, or eject. You just hope that come what may, you'll work through it with true friends. I, for one, wouldn't trade my real-life friendships, with all their thrills, good and bad, for all the tea in Chinatown!
Wednesday, October 05, 2005
That's the first name of one of my Turkish students. I make a point of using the student's names a lot in class, but this one I'm finding difficult. "How are you today, Farty?" just makes me giggle too much. Another amusing name I've come across recently is Tin Man, that's the unfortunate handle of a Chinese girl. If she only had a heart! Ok, Ok, I'm going...