Tuesday, August 28, 2007

global village

Last week I had Wee John from NYFSG (a UK Quaker Camp for 11-16yr olds) staying with me, he'd been to Sydney to see Helen (also from NYFSG but her family emigrated to Aussie a few years ago) and had come across to see Aotearoa NZ whilst 'down under' (and whilst Helen had exams or something).

So during the week I took him (ahem, got us a lift...) to the farm where I'd 'taken' Ann & Colin a few months ago as they travelled around after their stint as Resident Friends in Auckland before they returned to Aberdeen.... which is John's 'home' Meeting.

John went from us to Simon (whose parents I live with) in Christchurch - I know they survived the Undy 500 to Dunedin cos I was with Sarah (sister of Simon) in Auckland when she got a text to say they were now in Queenstown presumably in search of snowboarding, and then he was off to Ben & Charlotte's in Wellington... Charlotte stayed with Si & Susie in 2005 just before WGYF, they stayed over here at her parents bach in 2006 and got engaged there (awwww...), Wee John was at their wedding in Edinburgh in September and at NYFSG with them a few weeks ago. As John was arriving at Ben & Charlotte's place last night Ben was on the phone to his mum in Auckland who I'm staying with on my way to Welly - the reason I'm still in Auckland 2 days later than originally planned is I'm meeting Marie tonight at Auckland airport, Marie was staff with me, Susie and Si at NYFSG in 2002, when Wee John was Wee and John R-M was Big!

Got all that??!

Now in October Sarah will be at YFGM in the UK with Alex who was over here for a 15 month long '6mth stay', as will Wee John be and so it goes on.... all interlinked and intertwined like Celtic knotwork. And believe me there's plenty more like that, I haven't even started on who was all at Summer Gathering here this year!

As I've said before and will no doubt say plenty of times again - 6 degrees of separation? Huh, who are you kidding? Throw a few Quakers into the mix and you're down to 2 at the most... By the way if you follow that link you discover that the answer to it all is, of course, 42. And there lies a whole heap of other synchronicities of the last few days which I won't detail here but link the Far North Christian Revival Centres current poster campaign to a six year old in Christchurch , YF dinners and a conversation with Ruth at the farm when I was there with Wee John...

I may be on the other side of the world from the land of my birth but there are times when it really doesn't feel like it as the strands of who knows who in my life seem to become more tightly woven rather than looser.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

back again

No I haven't abandoned my blog, thanks those who asked! My laptop has been poorly bad and is still seriously sulking despite a new battery (again...).

In addition to having unco-operative technology I've spent the last month filling in forms, well that's what it feel like. I've applied to do a Graduate Diploma in Teaching through the University of Auckland next year - and before anyone takes me to task about all those times I've said I'd never want to (a) teach or (b) live in Auckland I hasten to add it's for Early Childhood Education and studying extramurally (which would mean I'd get to live up in Kaitaia still).

So why? Well funnily enough that's what several of the said forms have been asking (both those applying for the course and grovelling for funding loans and grants). I don't think it would have ever occurred to me as a 'career' option in the UK but the more I've learned about Early Childhood Eduction here the more it appeals. The national curriculum 'Te Whariki' translates as the weaving, it is the weaving together of many strands of a childs life and development in the context of their own community surroundings. It is holistic, it has emphasis on the spiritual development of the child and my pidgin anthroposophy could finally come in handy again (about seven years later how appropriate!). When reading through the curriculum I realised it was covering so many of the issues addressed by the Quaker Youthworker course I worked through in fits and starts, what's more as with Quaker youthwork the children are all there through choice (albeit parental/carers) rather than law so there's often a higher level of commitment and enthusiasm supporting the childs presence.

There are a number of Quakers involved here in ECE, both delivering it at a grassroots level and in the training for it, I guess it's not that surprising really!

So I'm waiting to hear if I've got an interview with the university and if I've got my loan application approved. Probably just as well I'm spending this week running around the country catching up with old F/friends rather than sitting here fretting over it. I'll keep you posted!