28 October 2009

Certificate in French, Pre-school, NHS dentist

Not in that order:

  • If you're tired of me singing the NHS' praises, this is the wrong post to read. We found an NHS dentist, which was supposed to be impossible, but apparently it is not. I booked an appointment for everyone in the family that has teeth and we went today. We waited three minutes, the dentist saw all three of us at the same time. Completely the same as the private dentist. They checked out Naomi's teeth: fine. Yoko and I were both fine. Yoko is exempt from paying (still) because she had Mei within a year. Naomi is under 18 and free too. I had to pay £16.50. In and out in 20 minutes.

  • Naomi is starting pre-school in September (again, with the help of the government/ Milton Keynes council). We have to decide where we want her to go and enroll her this next week. For those of you who are hoping to hear her speak English with an English accent, you'll have to wait 'til this time next year. And I can stop feeling guilty about speaking Japanese in the home.

  • I am trying to get into a beginners French course at the OU. I missed the cut-off day for getting the staff fee waiver by like three days, so I called this morning and I was told that I couldn't get the fee waived, but I could still enroll if I paid the cost of the course (like £970 or something). If I have learned anything from my maths-literate younger sister, it's that you should always negotiate, push, and prod when you are told no by an institution, so undeterred, I came to work today, printed out the fee waiver form, got it signed, and went over to undergraduate student registration  office. The office is actually just their call centre (as everyone studies off campus), so I knocked on the door, talked to someone, and was brought to the appropriate person's cubicle. After pleading my case, she promised that she would try and e-mail me when she found out if I could get in with the fee waiver or not. I still haven't gotten an e-mail, which I would like to think is a good sign. Either way, I am at least registered for next year and if I take two one-year courses, I can get a Certificate in French from the OU: something I think would be useful, especially if we decide to move to France, which I would like to think is a possibility. If not, then I will just use it when we holiday there and for my Applied Linguistics work. You can never have too much language knowledge in this work and it's always a good way to trump people bullshitting about something: that theory falls apart if you think about it in the French or Japanese context.