Tuesday, December 15, 2015

On hoaxes, bomb threats, jitters and career suicide

There were lots of jitters around Hermosa and Manhattan Beach schools last week. On Monday, Wednesday and again on Friday a bomb threat was dialled in, targeting the local high school. The one Lady P's preschool is right next door to. On Monday and Wednesday the school was 'just' on lock down. Urgh, just typing that makes my stomach flip. On Friday they closed the high school, Lady P's Montessori, and the elementary school on the same campus.

I bemoaned these events in a 'this country!' way to my sister, who reminded me that when we were growing up various buildings were sometimes closed because of IRA bomb threats. None of the threats ever materialized in our home town, and I don't think I was particularly scarred by the existence of those threats.

Still, I was away from home during those first two threats last week, on a work trip to Florida. Reading about bomb scares when you're far from home does not help soothe the jitters.

Now I'm in Florida again and my goodness those jitters have spread big time: all the schools within the LA Unified School District were closed down because of another bomb scare. Our local schools are not in LA USD (in fact we moved here because LA USD has such a poor reputation) and remained open. But still, when 700,000 students are sent home it's hard to feel entirely comfortable with Lady P being in the classroom. And it's not like she has finals to sit for. But being the parent away from home, and knowing as I do that TLOML has an overwhelmingly busy work schedule, I didn't really want to call him up and suggest we (he) kept her home.

Fortunately for my peace of mind, he got the jitters too, and picked Lady P up early from school so she could spend most of her day with our former nanny. I know, I know, the whole thing was probably a hoax and she was perfectly safe at Montessori. But still, it's nice to know she's nowhere near a school today.

I'm heading home tomorrow and planning a significant change of lanes on my career path. In a totally unsurprising, mother-of-a-young-child move, I've decided I want to travel much less (okay, not at all), and I don't really care if that means sacrificing my career goals. Being home would not stop the jitters, but it would make it much easier to act on them. And if Lady P is at all disturbed by the changes to her school schedule, the 'lock downs' and the half-empty classrooms, it will be nice to be around to soothe her jitters too.

Happily, of course, Lady P is completely oblivious. Long may it stay that way. In which case I can use the time I no longer spend travelling doing fun stuff like baking cookies.

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