Letters home, 2001, July 10

10 July 2001

Dear Mum and Dad

Thank you VERY much for the photo of Hahei.  It’s a real beauty and Elaine and I will put it in a frame this weekend and hang it in our living room.  Those lovely blues of the sea and the sky will provide such a contrast to the other two pictures we have of Verulamium last winter.  I know you miss your little house, but we do hope that life in Tairua is not too bad.

We were very distressed to hear of Mum’s fall and we are pleased that it was not as bad as it could have been. Still, a cracked shoulder bone is not fun and we hope it doesn’t hurt too much.

I know a broken shower is a pretty weak excuse, but if it works – to get yourself a new workshop – I reckon you should go for it and exploit the situation to the ultimate.  If you’re lucky, you may be able to remove the wall between the shower and the bathroom and so expand the workshop … best of luck!  I knew that sending you the sharpener would lead to better things.  Sharp tools call for a sharp workshop.  Well done ….

Also well done to Dora and Ian – it was good of them to go and see you.

Elaine is all ready for her inspection and a couple of exams to finish off her QTS – her Qualified Teacher Status.  Incredibly, the EU does not recognise NZ teacher qualifications and it takes between 1 and 3 YEARS to gain it here.  In the meantime, the local education authorities benefit handsomely because they get good, highly qualified teachers at rock bottom unqualified rates of pay for up to three years while they put them through the QTS hoops. Elaine will be finished – they allowed her to take 6 months because she is so highly qualified and experienced – by September, but even then we’re not sure whether she will be paid full rates right away or not until they have actually sent her the paperwork.  All the more reason for them to delay. I’ll stay in IT.  At least it’s fun.

There you go.  Have a good week.

Lots of love

Ewart and Elaine