Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Tuesday Seven

I just loved this cat in Whitley Bay.

1. I’m writing this from my desk in the study while the cat is trying to open the closet door (he’s an expert at such things.) I finally got back into working this afternoon. Earlier this month I was at least adding some notes and snippets here and there but I’m back to doing what I’m supposed to be doing now that it’s, what, the 10th of July? Sheesh. We’re hoping to have the first project published online soon. Just not sure how soon it will be. End of July, maybe?

2. My next driving lesson is tomorrow. I keep thinking that each time I’m going to finally be some British driving expert and the clutch control will come so naturally. I am now over the initial hump of “what the heck am I doing?” frustration into the, “why doesn’t this car listen to me?” phase. The clutch control – Lord, have mercy! I really marvel at the competence that so many people have to drive a stick shift on a hill. I feel like I’m the slowest learner when it comes to driving lessons and I feel bad for the poor instructor who must need to smoke 10 cigarettes after each lesson. I can only imagine the conversations that go on at the driving school when all the instructors tell their stories of woe; “Well, I have this dumb American lady who gets panicky when she sees a bus coming toward her…” Really, it’s pretty freaky.

3. Steve is going down South to snag himself a big shiny award for his company tomorrow. This means I’ll be sitting on the couch, painting my toenails and eating pizza with the cat. After living on my own for all those years, I get bored very easily when I’m left to my own devices.

4. After our trip to Whitley Bay Saturday, I slept in on Sunday and intelligently decided to take a shower before eating anything. Now, I’ve been dizzy a lot in my life and when I was a kid they told me my blood pressure was just low, and it was no big deal because, “those kind of people live forever.” But this was different. Instead of being a little lightheaded I basically collapsed and didn’t get better until Steve brought me a banana. It wasn’t as if I had been starving myself because, I’d eating a big plate of fish and chips for dinner (plus honeycomb ice cream) the night before, and had a crumpet early that morning before I went to bed. Anyway, since this has become some weird occurrence that I want to avoid all together, I’m going to the doctor Thursday to see if I can get my blood sugar checked. The doctor will probably just tell me to eat more bananas and I’m going to live forever.

5. I have another job interview on Monday. Another school library job (which means I really want the job) but with the past history of not getting any kind of work offers due to my non-native-ness, I’m not going to be very surprised if I don’t get the job. (Not to be pessimistic, but it’s really getting old.) Still, it’s good that something is happening and I am still in the running to becoming Britain's Next American School Librarian (that makes sense only if you read it as I’m American and the school library is in Britain.) 

6. I found out that I do have to take the famous Life in the U.K. test when I apply for my Indefinite Leave to Remain / Settlement in December / January. I have my test booklets now but so I have to study up before I go to our Home Office appointment (which we can’t even make yet because the calendar only goes up to four months in advance.) Here I thought I was just going to have to worry about taking a stinking driving test this year.

7. I’ve been reading Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird. One of my favourite passages so far is,

“I think perfectionism is based on the obsessive belief that if you run carefully enough, hitting each stepping-stone just right, you won’t have to die…perfectionism will ruin your writing…Perfectionism means that you try desperately not to leave so much mess to clean up” (28.)

Ain’t it the truth? We’ve also been watching The Walking Dead Season Two because it’s been on here. We watch it early enough so I don’t have nightmares. It’s not bad – we got to the part with the walkers in the barn. Also, my apologies to Sarah Dessen whose blog entry list on The Friday Five was my inspiration for today. (I didn’t really steal the idea because, well, it’s not Friday.) It really is a good, effective way to do a post though.


  1. Suzanne, good luck with the doctor and with the job interview - I was at one of our local libraries yesterday and the lady who works there is American!

    It's a wonderful local village library, a very important resource - especially for the older people in the village - but it's threatened with closure because it's now sandwiched between 2 brand new libraries, each about 6 miles away, and the council measures success only in terms of numbers of books borrowed. The library lady told me that many people just come in for a chat and to read the newspapers - what's wrong with that? It can't cost that much to run, it's a very small library in a building used for other things too.

    Unfortunately, she said that although whenever it's been threatened in the past, the village has run a big campaign to keep it open, the majority of the younger residents never use it - they just want to see it there. They seem to prefer to buy books from Amazon, Tesco or wherever. I think this is just terrible - the library offers so much more, and having been taken to mine by my mother as a child (and subsequently having taken my own 3 children, all of whom are now teenagers) I have discovered things I never would have even thought of. Libraries give you the opportunity to browse, and to come across all sorts of fascinating books. And the librarians are rather better informed than someone on the checkout at the supermarket. Yesterday mine told me that Alexander McCall Smith is living part of the year in a village only 5 mins from my house! (Daughter immediately said "DO NOT stalk him" :) :)

    Anyway, I digress - but good luck - keep us informed.


    1. Thank you so much.
      I'm glad to know that Americans *are* getting library jobs around here. I'll just have to hang in there until the right one comes my way.
      It's a shame that the council only sees numbers instead of measuring how valuable a library is to its locals.
      Haha, your daughter knows you well, huh? :-)