Tuesday 7 December 2010


Tomorrow, for me, it's the end of term, and the end of this stint of day-after-day, week-after-sodding-week of school and getting up at the same time and doing the same chores - feed cats, feed chickens, feed fish, feed self, pack lunch, treat dog, leave house - every morning, and reading out tongue-twister rolls every lesson - Bo Ryehn, Lyra, Indiga, Charis, Jurie, Kimone, Flavia, Yabesira - where none of the names are pronounced the way you would expect, and trying to insert a little French into brains that are already full of pop song lyrics and celebrity gossip and Facebook know-how.

It's too much for my delicate sensibilities, accustomed as they are to variety and new diversions every day, and choosing whether to write about Washington or the West Coast or maybe Ireland or Jaipur. So thank goodness I'm off to Melbourne and surrounds on Friday for a week of vineyards and goldfield towns and fancy hotels and dinners not eaten in the kitchen or in front of the TV.

I tell people all the time that being a travel writer's not the cushy job it sounds, and that it's tiring and hard work and frustrating and occasionally even a little dull. But you know what? It beats being a full-time school teacher into a cocked hat, no argument.

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