As one teacher kicked me up the arse so another landed a custard pie in my face. Normally I’d have grounds for harassment but this was Pantomime where anything goes. I played my ‘Felf’ character to perfection, although there was nearly a last-minute change of character. As I helped the ‘Prince’ put the backdrop up, I stepped off the bench we were both standing on. As it tipped up he took the theatrical idiom ‘break a leg’ literally and nearly fell of the stage.
The slapstick continued even after the performance. I didn’t see the run up although I felt the moment when shoe met groin. Just as red rag is to a bull so my red felf trousers must have appeared to this particular child. Why he felt the need to kick me square in the nuts when I was clearly one of the Pantomime ‘good guys’ is anyones guess. It made my eyes water and my bell tinkle.
The last day of term was proving to be a testing day. I’d run into a dog on the way to the tube station and I had to change into my felf outfit in a small cramped toilet cubicle. I was within earshot of passing kids and every slight movement set off a sound effect from my ‘Sparkle and Glitter’ wand. I prayed it would go unnoticed.
The children responded with much enthusiasm to my turn. It was nice that so many of them spontaneously hugged me just as the Head Teacher arrived. One child did unfortunately produce a torrent of vomit but I like to think that was more of a reflection on the amount of party food he’d consumed.
Of course I had to play teacher too. I reprimanded some children who had crossed out the names out of children in their Christmas cards and replaced them with mine. I also had to tell them not to ask one of our teachers anymore when her baby was due. As I said, it was a difficult day.
The afternoon was a heady mix of cake, non-fizzy drinks and party games. To double our delight a consignment of whiteboard pens arrived. It was like the last days of Rome, primary-school style.
And suddenly there was none. As the last child trailed off with their parent I was left alone to contemplate the end of my first teaching term. My head swam, my nerves were shattered and my balls ached. Then a wonderful thing happened…it started to snow. Merry Christmas!