Box photo credit: CC licensed http://bit.ly/1qAx7r4
Please sir, do not put me in a box.
On the way to check out of my B&B accommodation this morning I found myself carrying rather a lot: overnight bag and the chunky wooly jumper in one hand, cello in the other, handbag slung across my body, and a backpack. With all of this, I opted for the lift instead of the stairs. I went in and just as the doors were closing in pops a tidily suited man dragging a rolling case. He gave me one up-and-down glance and said, ‘No point asking what you do, pretty self-evident,’ and added a slightly roll-eyes-ish half-smirk.
I held my tongue. Maybe I shouldn’t have, but honestly, if that was how I treated my students- ??? It is unthinkable.
I could rant, and there is definitely some steam rising above my head, but instead I just want to take it as a wake up call to remind me that it is a pleasure and a privilege to find out about the people I meet. I do not want to be out into a stereotypical box.
At 5’1″ with waist length hair in a plat, carrying a varsity-type jumper, and a cello I do get plenty of the ‘didn’t you want to play something your own size like the flute’ type jokes.
But honestly, I would hate to think that I was defined by that one second in the lift.
So I am off to give a workshop at UEA, where a room full of academics will learn about working together, communication, and laughter – all though the extremely inviting orchestral instruments I have driven the 200 miles to get here. I am certainly not going to judge them and wouldn’t dream of limiting my views of what they can accomplish.
And as for that man in he the lift, I can only hope that he is one of the people in that workshop so I can look on him with openness and find out who he is. It is worth asking. There is always a point.