I went to hand over the cash we had raised after the first school swimming gala to the bursar. Livingstone school, around 2011.
TomTom accompanied me.
Much counting and signing and Tom showing off his swimming “medals” with Rick making all the right noises from behind the hatch at the bursar’s office.
As we left, Tom says to me: “We call her the Prison Lady. You see all the bars she’s behind? Look, even her door has burglar bars!”
Oh, I said, I wonder if she has to sleep in there all night? “No”, he says airily, “she has her own keys”.
When I told Rick about this, she told me how one little kid had peered at her through the bars and asked: “Do you have food?”
Aitch takes a weekly reading session at Livingstone. Usually she reads in the class and each kid gets a turn to come to her and read while the rest get on with their work under the teacher’s supervision. She slips Tom’s book near the top of the pile so he can get his reading done early and stop watching her reading with the others. She gives him a discreet hug as he walks up to her to which he stiffens awkwardly, turns his shoulder and glances to see if his mates are watching. He does NOT want to be teased!!
This week for once the reading was outside the classroom, and Mrs Button sent the kids out one by one.
SO: TomTom climbed on Aitch’s lap and gave her a huge hug, snuggled down and read both his books to her with full concentration!
Aitch’s grin was still fixed on her face hours later.
You can venture forth boldly and independently . .