Friday, 19 November 2010

Mr Motivator From Yorkshire, The Floral Dance And A Tooth

I'm paying homage.

I'm paying homage to a band I remember well from my childhood. A band which had a multimillion selling hit in 1976. Only Paul McCartney and Mull Of Kintyre kept them off the Number 1 spot. They were not a band which any teenager at the time would have admitted liking, but nonetheless with their rendition of the Flower Dance has secured the Brighouse And Rastrick Brass Band a place in music history.

I'm lost in Brighouse in deepest Yorkshire. I'm lost because I have tried to find a way round the M62 which is at a Friday night standstill.

"Now children, welcome to the world of adults trying to get home," said the teacher as we joined the queue.

It had been a good journey, because of the relaxed nature of the teachers. They rarely raised their voices. The lead teacher was so relaxed that he put his sunglasses on and his earphones in and meditated in the warm afternoon sun. He was in complete control. The children behind behaved immaculately.

He was a motivator, in between meditation sessions, gently challenging his group.

"What's that town we are passing?"

"I know I know," came a voice from the back. "Is it Oslo?"

"No Jamie, that's in Norway. Try again. Look out to the right children and particularly Sharon. You'll see a farmer on a quadbike pulling a trailer with two sheep in it."

"Where? Where? We can't see them."

"Well that's because you are all looking out to the left."

When we arrived at the school, he had organised everything. The children had clear instructions as to the procedure for going home and how to pick up there luggage. There was no crush, as there usually is, of parents fighting to secure their child's suitcase and children wandering off in all directions.

Before the children were allowed off the bus, he leant out the bus door and gave the parents a pep talk: "In all my time as a teacher, I have never known children take to a school trip with such relish. They conquered many fears, did many things and behaved well. You should be very proud of them." The parents clapped and cheered.

This teacher is going places. Prime Minister, one day perhaps?

"What's it now, Johnnie?" he asked. "What's that clacking noise on the floor of the bus? Is it a pen? Is it a coin?"

"No," replied an anxious voice. "Me tooth's come out.

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