Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Holidays schmolidays

February 18th 2009

Issy just made me laugh. We were listening to Adele and she said, ‘I always thought this song was called Chasing Payments!’ She needs to keep making me laugh as I’ve just discovered their half term stretches for two long weeks, not ten days as I thought. With weekends, that’s 16 days off. The girls are celebrating while I am mildly panicked. One of the best things about state schools in the UK is the fact that the kids get bog standard week-long half terms and fairly manageable Christmas, Easter and summer holidays (although that might be selective memory playing tricks on me as six weeks summer hols is enough to try the patience of a saint.) I used to be the smug one when all my private school fee paying friends moaned about the eight week summer break and three and half week Christmas hols. It’s particularly handy when you’re self employed and work from home to have a school term that outweighs the length of the holidays. This year, they have an Easter break a month after going back to school followed by nine weeks summer holidays! All this in addition to every Wednesday off and more bank holidays in May than the UK gets all year. Vive la France!
I’ve been really sad reading about Jade Goody’s cancer battle. To be staring death in the face when you have two young children and are not yet 30 is a hideous situation. I must admit, I hate Big Brother and all it stands for (although I’m a closet fan of Celebrity BB) and when I interviewed Jade three years ago, before she had the infamous racist run in with Shilpa Shetty on CBB, I wasn’t impressed. She was promoting her new perfume for a reality show on Living and I was interviewing her on her mobile while she was driving her car! We got cut off three times which was frustrating enough but when she mentioned going to Mumbai to source spices and ingredients for her perfume, my interest was ignited as I love India. ‘What did you think?’ I asked, to be met with ‘Well, it wasn’t very nice, it wasn’t clean and it was smelly’. I dismissed her as an ignorant airhead but watching her prepare to marry and get her house in order for her two sons as she faces up to a premature and painful death has been an education in courage. I’ve just re-read the last few lines of the interview where she told me: ‘I’m good at seeing things through. I’ve never had money before so I’m very grateful for it. I’ve had some great opportunities and I can look after my family.’
Signing off with a poem Issy wrote this morning, it's called Your Angel in Heaven. It says it all.

Your angel in heaven
Is the guardian of your heart
Give her your worries
And your fears
So hope and peace can start
Keep the angel near you
And know how much she cares
For when you need love and joy
Your angel will be there.


Claire said...

that poem is so lovely tell izzy.
i don't knock jade goodey at all for what she is doing about publisisng her death..what a brave brave women

claire (your sis in law)

Franglaise said...

hey claire,

good to see you on here, and fb, i am still getting to grips with it all.

Gillie said...

We have summers off and a pretty long Christmas break and a week off in April but other than that we have a day here and a day there but no big breaks. Now that I am home I wouldn't mind the kid having longer vacations but when I worked it was torture trying to get everything set up for his time off and work!

What a talented girl your Issy is. :) Lovely poem.