If you could move anywhere, where would you go? Would you want the change of seasons? Do you love the heat year round? Can you handle only a month or two of summer? If you could move anywhere and not have to worry about the weather, where would that be?
This past weekend we had “Blizzard-like Conditions” here in New York and along the mid-eastern sea-board. A “Coastal Flood Watch” was in effect and Mayor Deblasio issued a travel advisory. “Stay home and off the roads!” I’m pretty traumatized after Sandy. Any flood warning gets me packing an emergency-go-bag. We didn’t just lose a house – we lost our car, too! A one-year-old Toyota 4Runner that we bought after Hurricane Irene drowned our Sonata. “This will keep us safe in a flood,” we thought! Luckily, when Sandy hit, we weren’t home. Our car was. When we got to it 5 days later, the cup-holders and coin catchers were still filled with sea water.
“Congratulations! You have been invited to interview with Qatar Schools in Atlanta, GA.”
“I am indeed only looking for real, experienced educators – which is why I think you could be a good fit…if you have time, I would like to arrange a Skype interview with you this week?”
“Thank you for your continued interest in a teaching position with Abu Dhabi schools. We are pleased to provide you with the venue for your upcoming interview in New York”
Aside from Abu Dhabi and Qatar, I also submitted an inquiry to a school in China. The recruiter got back to me quickly and stated I was more than qualified and could I set up a Skype Interview? China? While the salary and benefits pale in comparison to Qatar and Abu Dhabi, how amazing would it be to spend a year in China? In less than two weeks, I will have interviewed with three different countries with three different benefits packages. I know I’m getting ahead of myself, but which would/should I choose? All offer an exciting change. I’m over the moon at the prospects! But let’s knock me back down to earth and remember these are just interviews, not offers.
My Supervising AP wrote me a letter of recommendation and without going into specifics, I told him it was for a few amazing teacher opportunities coming up this summer. “It’s a long-shot, but I need to get a fresh perspective.” A completely true statement. Teaching in the same school for 13 years is both a blessing and a curse. It’s like when you outlive everyone. My mentors are gone. My teaching buddies are gone or on their way out. We all say we’ll keep in touch, but we never really do.
The blessing is that I have had the privilege of teaching some of the most amazing students in all of New York. Although the students change every two years, I am confident that my classes will (mostly) be a pleasure to teach. No lie. My kids are absolutely awesome! We serve a large population of newcomers from every region of the world. Whether it’s Bangladesh, Ecuador, Dominican Republic or Yemen, the students come with respect for teachers and respect for their own education. It is a respect I don’t easily find in American students. While my American students are a pleasure as well, they have a bit of a lack of appreciation for free education.
Next blessing is tenure. That’s not an easy thing to give up. And seniority in my building – It’s the type of job security most people dream of. If I could afford to live in New York on this salary, I wouldn’t consider ever leaving!
The “blizzard” was the second snow of the winter season and quite a significant pile-up. Baby Z demanded to go outside after breakfast on Saturday, so we bundled her up in layers of clothing, snow suit, boots, hat, gloves, scarf and a smile. 5 minutes later she was in tears, begging to come inside! “Not as fun as Elsa made it seem, huh?”
Being snowed in for the weekend really forced me to relax and enjoy being home. Hubby went out to shovel twice. I brewed coffee and fixed breakfast. Baby Z delighted in a dollar-store-find of “slime putty” and play doh for her Frozen figurines. Baby D tugged on my leg, bothered his sister, and napped frequently. We all got in a nap at some point! How sad that Monday came so quickly! I think my little Elsa and I will miss the snow. Looking at it, anyway.