I’ve been in the U.K. nearly ten months now, and it has been amazing.Â Rainy, snowy, sunny, exciting, (and, during driving lessons, occasionally terrifying), fun, and fascinating. Since February (when I have been keeping an “official” (okay, June is a bit shaky) tally), I have read over 150 book and started reviewing for Bookgeeks.Â Who, I must say, are all sorts of awesome.
Aside from the fantastic Bookgeeks, I’ve also finally started reaching out and actively building a life here. Mostly by learning how to drive, which I must admit has been terrifying, hysterical, and frustrating all at once. The hysterical bits are usually at the beginning of the lesson when I reach for the seatbelt on the wrong side or (just the once!) stick my hand out the window while I thought I was reaching for the stick shift. Oops. Luckily, I appear to have the worlds-most-unflappable driving instructor, so he just gently corrects me, and we move on. (After telling me the story of one student who managed to drive into the centre of a roundabout and then attempt to flee the car in his stress and terror). Trust me, being a middle school teacher and being a driving instructor are closer than you might believe.Â At least the fourteen year olds don’t have control of a thousand pounds of steel.
Other than the adventures on the left side of the road, I have also, I think, managed to snag myself a job.Â It’s not completely final, but I have strong hopes, and I am more than looking forward to having a *bit* more structure to my days, an intellectual focus, and, of course, a way to pay for the horseback riding lessons.
It is getting darker earlier now, and there is definitely a chill in the air. I’m driving about on my own, and I feel like I’m getting to know Manchester.Â It’s been a good almost-year.