Patricia’s news for Christmas 2007

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.

One response to “Patricia’s news for Christmas 2007”

  1. dear keith and patsy,
    happy new year!
    it was lovely to read your blogs and look at the photos. Sammy is beautiful (must be something in the name haha)! patsy-good on you for aiming for 13 hours a week. I’m sorry for the loss of your father. clearly he lead a good, long life ๐Ÿ™‚ keith-excellent work for publishing in science! i just finished writing a paper and waiting for the publishers to get back to us to see if its accepted…i’ll let you know when it gets published.

    so lovely to hear from you, sorry i have been totally useless at sending xmas cards this year-it was really manic leading up to christmas!
    quick update is:
    wai man is getting married in june! he and tanya have been together for 5 years now and obviously still going strong ๐Ÿ™‚ wai man is a qualified architect now and still working for chaplin and farrant in norwich.
    mum and dad are both well, apart from i think the aches and pains of work are beginning to take their toll-i think dad is considering retirement in the next few years if not sooner. we’re had the business in botesdate for 11 years now!
    i am in my 2nd year of my phd in cambridge now, trying to cure cancer! (its medicinal chemistry for cancer so its half oncology and half chem.) i am enjoying life in camb but of course there are ups and downs! i always seem to be busy busy but thats because i work and play hard (otherwise i would go insane i think!) and its nice to be so close to both home and london-i have my car with me in camb so i go galivanting quite often ๐Ÿ™‚
    do email me-i dont know your email address…
    take care xxx

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