September already huh? How time flies. I’ve picked the last of the blackberries in the garden and the apple trees are looking good. I must resist the urge to make a giant pie, though. That would undo all the good work with the diet. (Ed: Don’t think of yummy, yummy chocolate!) The latter – the diet that is, not the choccy – is going okay and the additional walking means I’m feeling a lot fitter too. I’ve lost a few pounds, but mainly I seem to have toned up in certain areas. Still, better that than no progress at all.
I also decided on a spot of shopping as I’d seen a couple of nice dresses on Dorothy Perkins’ web site. I dropped by after work and after the old shopping-basket-with-jeans-on-top-and-two-dresses-underneath trick, in I went. The first dress wasn’t me, but I loved the fit of the blue circle dress (also here). I’ve no idea what that means in style, but I know what I like! Plus, it wasn’t too expensive… hmm, where have I heard that line before? 🙂 So I bought it. It has been *ages* since I bought any new clothes. I also saw some gorge shoes, but I managed to control myself.
A little earlier in the summer holidays, I was taking Wee Man to a summer activity camp hosted by a local school. Don’t worry, I’m not cruel enough to send him to summer school! This was much more a case of fun & games plus kid care. Oh the joys of working parents eh? 🙂 Anyhoo, that particular week just happened to coincide with the exam results day; so cue a large influx of teenagers to collect said pieces of paper.
As I wandered back to the car, I noticed a number of happy smiley faces, as well as a few less than pleased expressions. I can’t really remember what happened with my GCSE results, but I do remember my A levels. Traipsing in to collect the slip of paper and the worry that if I’d really blown it, I’d be stuck in my hometown. Really, that was the only reason I’d applied to go to university – to get out. I hadn’t expected to do that well and I guess I met my expectations 🙂 The funny thing is, at what stage do your exams start to influence your future? Is it as you make your choices or when the results are out?
By odd coincidence there was a radio programme on social mobility and what some of the key differences where, between children from well-to-do, and less-well-to-do families. Now, I won’t play that card. I came from a middle class family and we didn’t really go without. Sure, we weren’t rolling in it, but Mum & Dad did their best. I think the reasons for my own academic shortcomings were down to being lazy and disinterested. “No homework tonight, class. Just revision.” Cool, I’ll catch up on my reading… and then go to the pub! 🙂 Talking of reading, that was one of the items listed in the radio programme; the effect of reading regularly to your nippers and also encouraging them to read too.
Sure, I suppose could talk about the difficulty growing up (the whole trans thing), but really, other kids went through far worse and they still did well. Really, I only did A levels because I didn’t fancy going to the local college and I think that was more the Devil You Know than risk a new environment. Fear eh? Looking back, perhaps college would have been a better choice. I’m more vocational than academic. Lessons learned eh? 🙂 Still, I got out of my hometown (which was a major goal of mine) and while I didn’t do well at uni, it did mean I had to get myself together: sort out a place to live, pay the bills and, later on, get a job.
Long term, things have worked out very well. I don’t say that as a smug mare, nor falsely positive, but more a case of enjoying where I am. Maybe I would have arrived at a more well paid job sooner if I’d done well, who can really say? I suppose it’s a bit like those Choose Your Own Adventure books that existed when I was a kid (Ed: …in the park… jumpers as goalposts… 😛 ) you make your choices and make the best of it. If you story is similar or very different, I’d love to hear it.
[ Today’s lyric: England by Carter, The Unstoppable Sex Machine ]