I have to admit I never imagined that I would enjoy a glass of Guinness, albeit a small one, so much! Maybe it was the fact we had just been guided through the brewing process and what a process it is – an art in fact, or maybe that we now knew that the pipes in every pub in Ireland are cleaned once every three weeks to ensure the Guinness isn’t tainted (and who knows how often they are cleaned in pubs elsewhere in the world) or maybe it was simply the fact we were in Ireland looking out over the fair city of Dublin! Whatever, it was nectar!
Onto our final dinner with that bittersweet feeling of fun mixed with sadness, knowing our trip was almost all over. I have no idea where we went as I just followed the crowd and didn’t take any notice of the restaurants name, which is quite unlike me. The meal was superb, as was the service, the waiters bringing the right dish to the right person despite our moving tables to chat to different mates before we all set off back to work and our lives the next day.
After breakfast chatting, I set off on my own for the journey back to Peterborough. Only a month until I see my other half again – only a month until all the family meet up, but still, a certain sadness, especially when I went past the Qantas planes, wanting to head back to Australia, and then as I took off for Canada, leaving behind my gorgeous daughter, sister, auntie, friends, and even my favourite brother-in-law! I settled into watching films to distract myself – Le Weekend (absolutely rubbish – who on earth recommended that to me?), The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, which I decided to watch as I saw the man in front of me shaking with laughter and I recognised it – I loved it once again and finally The Invisible Woman, which I think, if the screen hadn’t been so dark and the movie formatted to fit only half the screen, would have been a really good film, with Ranulph Fiennes in fine form. To think last time I saw KIrstin Scott Thomas and Ranulph Fiennes together was in The English Patient, simmering with passion, one of my favourite films ever, so romantic, and now she was playing his lover’s mother – how did that happen?
Back to Peterborough where I am not entirely sure Simon was so thrilled to see me, especially with no luggage and no presents! No time to waste, back to the gym, long walks and noticing how the winter has changed into spring – green everywhere! Back to Arrowsmith to the bake sale today – raising money for towards the end of year outing that the students are looking forward to. Simon and some of the guys from his class baked delicious brownies and cookies last night – they did a great job and enjoyed hanging out and cooking together.
Today was also the last day before assessments start next week which will measure how far the students have progressed in each of their exercises this year and the last chance to master whatever they were working towards. Simon was really excited to tell me that one of the students in his class mastered the ten handed clock today – the ultimate level – what a day to do it, especially as he is graduating from Arrowsmith this year – well done Matt! And well done to Amaar too, who also mastered the 10 handed clock this week. Something unique about Arrowsmith is how supportive the students are of each other – encouraging when the exercises seem too difficult and celebrating each mastery with each other, even if they are struggling themselves. For these students, each of whom is working to overcome their own difficulties, the understanding of each other’s difficulties and celebrations of each mastery is something I have not seen in any other place. For me this makes the Arrowsmith programme even more special.