On Mondays

Early in The Hitch-hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy the main character, Arthur Dent, mentions that ‘…it must be Thursday.  I’ve never been able to get the hang of Thursdays.’  That’s pretty much how I feel about Mondays.  I just can’t get the hang of Mondays.  People talk of blue Mondays.  I’m discovering a new shade of blue every week.

I honestly don’t know what it is.  For some reason Mondays always seem to just get away from me.  I’ll get up early, be at work with plenty of time to spare, and everything will go haywire.  I would realise that I forgot to make some copies I need for my first period class, and today the lady in the copy room is off sick and she has the only key.  Or between locking my car door and unlocking the office door, I’d get three texts from different staff members who are sick, sitting with a flat tyre, and stuck behind their automatic gate, which was fine ten minutes ago when her husband left for work, but now, for the life of her, simply refuses to open.  And I’d pull closer my timetable and, in the few minutes that had originally been set aside for me to gather my thoughts before starting the new day, try to figure out what to do with three teacherless classes for the first period of the day with only one teacher available for substitution, but it’s his only free period of the day and I really don’t want to take that measly half-hour away from him but there’s really no way around it…  It’s usually at about this point that a learner bursts into the office with some intense personal problem that reached a catharsis right at that moment.

Then there are always faxes from the Department of Education, timestamped half past eleven Saturday night (don’t they sleep or have weekends?) which requires me to respond by last week Wednesday at the latest.  (These go into my special filing cabinet – it’s bucket-shaped, made of wire and stands under my desk and someone empties it twice a week.)

But somehow even days like this come to an end.  I manage to get to two o’clock without strangling any kids or pushing any colleagues down the stairs and realise another week is almost over and tell myself Mondays are great – they’re one day closer to Friday – and I say thank you that I have a job, that people trust me enough to give me responsibilities and that I have the chance to make a difference.

Even Mondays can turn out good in the end.  I guess it’s a good thing that blue’s my favourite colour…