The globe finally stops spinning and tonight we are going to find a bit of global happiness in Vietnam.
SECRET TO HAPPINESS: Acknowledge your influences
TRADITION: Visiting teachers ( I would have balked at this concept a few years ago)
DATE: The third day of Tet/ Lunar ( New years for the Vietnamese that is celebrated January and February- a whole month of celebrating the new year!)
Do you ever look around you and think
‘Well, gosh! How the hell did I get to this point in my life? ‘ – I do and try imagine an image of a 34 year old woman with a finger stuck up her nose going ‘huh?’ at the same time.
I am sort of okay with where I am now but I am a mental sprinter. I want to do all the good stuff -rush past the learning and be at the top. To be more accurate I do enjoy learning . I love doing different training workshops and courses with mental health charities because I learn new skills and I can help others who are struggling. I mean I want to start my Masters in Creative writing in October. I know learning is a process but sometimes my mind gets carried away.
I was like that at school. The first teacher to ever make a positive influence over my attitude to learning was Mrs Hendricks. She was the first Indian teacher or any teacher that was not white to teach in my high school -way back ,2 years after the apartheid era ended. He style of teaching and her passion made a huge impression on me. I suddenly loved Biology! She was also the first teacher to read one of my first pieces of free style writing. My best friend at school told me to show it to Mrs Hendricks. She was crying saying how powerful my writing was. I looked at my friend in shock. How can what I write get a reaction like that? Oddly, I never felt pushed to be creative in English lessons.
Can you remember your school days?
There must be someone that made an impression on you? No, not that cute guy with all blonde curls and blue eyes and a cheeky smile. Maybe that teacher took an interest in you, made you feel special? Maybe that teacher taught you some thing that went beyond a text book .
If you want to do some serious celebrating – new year style. Vietnam is the place to be.It usually occurs over three days and is kind of like a Thanksgiving and Christmas and New years all rolled into one.
Day one – it’s all about the family
Day two – time to roll in the friends
Day three is unique and I think it is pretty awesome. On this day the Vietnamese people go and visit their teachers. They get presents and are highly respected members of the Vietnamese community. Old and new teachers are praised and acknowledged.
mmmh, I’m thinking a new career and life change on the cards…. I bet the teachers don’t on on strike in Vietnam.
Project time- WAX ON WAX OFF ( a collective groan from the back of the virtual class room. I used to be a huge part of that collective groan too. Come on humour me a bit…. Yes?
Acknowledge one person who you identify as a teacher in your life. It can a be non school related person of course.
Put pen to paper or fingers ready to type about some of the things that come into your mind when you think about that person. Did they say anything important to you? Mrs Hendricks over in Biology told me to ‘never stop writing.
What was going on in your life then? I was on a bad path – getting into drugs and hating my body.
What would you say to them now? I wish I had asked Mrs Hendricks about bmi and about what kind of havoc messing with pills and laxatives and erratic eating habits and starvation diets would have on me in my future ( the me today)
Is there any kind of insight into the path you are on now? Funnily enough, I’m going through the training process to open up a peer- led Eating disorder recovery and support group where I live.
MESSAGE: It’s good to be a giver in life. You never know what you are going to ‘take’ from the experience away with you.
(IMAGES SOURCED FROM GOOGLE IMAGES)