My life has continued on a more level keel than Keith’s. I’m still working for the Danish Red Cross Asylum Department’s project department and still trying to convince the Danes that using portfolios to record evidence of competence is a splendid learning tool. I divide my time between a job-finding course for immigrants and helping asylum seekers write articles for New Times.
But a lot of the sparkle has gone out of the work since the Culture House closed and the project department moved to new premises. I miss the daily cycle beside the harbour and the spontoneity and creativity that flourished there. I seem to be spending more and more time on administration or on overcoming practical problems and having less energy to do the things that bring job satisfaction.
Although the crisis over Keith’s contract with ICES was resolved quickly, it was a watershed. It made me think about retirement in a new light: first with absolute horror, then over the last five months I have gradually come to think how nice it would be to be able to relax a bit and to do other things like spending more time being a Granny and not having to snatch opportunities to visit my father – or not falling asleep doing Sudoko at 9pm. The clinching factor was a visit to Beccles at the end of October; it really felt like coming home. So I am now going to announce on this blog my intention to work no more than 13 hours a week in 2008. Now I will have to be accountable for my resolution!
The motive for our visit to Beccles was the 25th anniversary celebrations of the Waveney Valley Woodcraft Folk. It was wonderful to see so many of the early members. The Elfins sang the Woody song, there was cake, a ceilidh and a gathering at the Locks. I was really proud to know that the idealism lives on and has touched so many over the years.
In November my father celebrated his 90th birthday.Here you can see all the family gathered round. In fact there were about 60 guests from all over the world, and of course for my father there was a large buffet.
And now we are going to spend Christmas holidays with all the family at Stroanfreggan. I’m especially looking forward to playing with Sam. And beyond that I am looking forward to March when Ruth and Mike’s baby is due. Yes, I definitely do want to be an active grandmother.