Sunday, 20 December 2009
When I grow up, I want to be....
Now usually, Ellie and babbling equals plenty of nods and 'yes, dears' and not much else, but this morning we had a fairly serious discussion which, for once, didn't include hairstyles, heeled boots and lip gloss (in case you were unsure, the hairstyles, heeled boots and lip gloss are my daughter's favorite topics of conversation, not mine). Anywho, while we were talking about birthday and Christmas stuff in general, my girl suddenly came out with the following:
"When I grow up, I want to be either a teacher, a spy, or a fashion designer."
Now, that might make a few people go 'aw, bless' or some such thing, but I was actually quite impressed that she has apparently progressed from the 'when I grow up I want to be a princess or a pop star' ambitions. The likelihood of my daughter marrying into royalty is zero, and while she loves to sing, her enthusiasm is only surpassed by her lack of tone, so pop stardom is out too (though, having said that, most pop stars lip sync nowadays don't they, so maybe that should be listed as a possibility).
A teacher? Now, that can only be a good thing. She's intelligent, way ahead of her peers, loves telling people what to do, and enjoys marking her brother's homework, She could definitely become a teacher. A spy is maybe not so easily achievable, but still possible. She's definitely got the whole sneaky side of things covered at any rate. Okay, a spy may be a dubious dream, but it is definitely far more realistic than a princess.
Of course, the favoured choice of career is the fashion designer. I don't know whether it's a generation thing (which makes me feel really old, by the way), but when I was eight I had absolutely no idea what was fashionable and what wasn't (I probably still don't, actually). But Ellie is very firm when it comes to what she likes and doesn't like. Thankfully she has to wear school uniform, or heaven knows how much money I'd have to spend on clothes. Her outfits are perfectly colour-co-ordinated, and she point-blank refuses to wear certain things if they make her look 'silly'. Honestly, if she could have seen what I wore when I was her age, she would have disowned me.
And me? When I was seriously picking my career options, I wanted to be a nursery teacher first, and work in the advertising world second. I've always loved making up slogans and just basically messing around with words, and little kids have always been a weakness with me too. Of course, I dropped out of school during the first term of the sixth form (year 12 as it is now), and have only ever worked as a sales assistant, but do you know what, I'm almost glad that I did drop out. Working with the public on and off for 15 years has meant that I have probably interacted with every type of person on the planet. It's these different personalities that help me when it comes to writing. I may not remember people's names, or even base a character on a particular person, but from observing lots of weird and wonderful people over the years, I have received an education that isn't provided in any school in the world. I'm not educated in the true sense of the word, but I'm world-wise, and when it comes to writing novels, that can only be a good thing.
So, what about you? When you were young and innocent, what did YOU want to be?