At the age of 52, looking back eight years, I was possibly more emotionally prepared than most to make a move to the other side of the world.
It was after the hot summer of 1976 / 1977 that I moved from Lincolnshire to Brighouse. After my parents' divorce, Dad moved to Brighouse to be nearer family, and about six months later so did my Mum, my little brother and me.
Leaving third-formers unattended on a double-decker bus heading for cricket practice is never a good idea. We were upstairs, rocking the Leyland, intent on tipping her over. The entire class of third-formers running from side to side together, and we had a good sway going when, to our glee, someone spotted Eric, the ‘mad’ maths master strutting across the Rastrick Grammar School yard. So, a long cry went up… ‘Errrricccc!... Errrrricccc!’ as we ran side to side. I relish the memory of Mr. Nichols gripping his cape, gritting his teeth as he stormed up the stairs, uttering his delicious invectives -’Insolent bounders!... Whippersnappers!... Snidey shodhorns!’ - as he lashed about with flailing arms.
Cyprus is unusually quiet just now. The beaches are deserted. There are no tourists, and those of us who call this beautiful island ‘home’ are in lockdown, due to the global pandemic. Even the teaching, that brought me to Cyprus seven years ago, is conducted remotely!
My journey from Rastrick to Cyprus is a convoluted one. That I am here is, as my mum would have said, “more by luck than management.” This is my thirty-seventh year of teaching; I have worked in Service Children’s Education for 30 of those and have enjoyed a most wonderful career.