My first job
I = Interviewer
L = Liz

I What was your first job, Liz?
L Erm. Oh, I can remember it very well. Erm, I`d just graduated and I`d just got married �er two important things � and my husband got a teaching job in Tanzania. And er… we went out there together and my idea was… what I hoped to do was erm… get a job shortly after getting there. And I didn`t really know what kind of job it would be.
I So you were just taking pot luck, really?
L Well, what happened was I thought I`d take some time to settle us in to this small town on the coast of Tanzania, north of Dar es Salaam, a town called Tanga, and I thought I`d settle us in � wherever we were going to live, I � we didn`t know. But on the very first day we were there, erm… somebody came running up to me, literally in the street, and said �We hear you`re � you`re a graduate, and the local junior school`s going to close down. Please, do you think you could be the teacher?�
I The only teacher?
L No, one of two. I was to teach the six to thirteen year-olds, all nationalities, and there was also a class of five and six year-olds, all nationalities, in this small, erm… local school. It was called Nuguvumali School. It was a very small school just outside, through the banana plantation on the hill outside of Tanga.
I But you had no experience of teaching at all?
L No. It was…. I look back now, now that I am a teacher � because I ultimately became a teacher � I look back with horror and think, �The only way that I think that I coped was because of… I was so ignorant, I didn`t know any better�. Er… and… every day… I took the job… I felt as if I was doing a really good deed. I don`t think I did, looking back, but… and every day we drove out, erm… to this small school, just a little wooden school � it had a veranda all round � and the kind of thing that happened was… because it was out in the bush, er… there was a lot of snakes. And we had… something that was very important with these children was snake drill. It was important to me too, I was terrified of snakes. Unfortunately, the children weren`t frightened of snakes, so whenever the cry went up �A snake!�, instead of running in the opposite direction, the children would all run straight towards the snake. And I had the job of getting in between the children and the snake, and trying to say �No, no!� you know, �Back you go � Remember the snake drill!� and they`d cheer and cheer until… and they used to come along and chop the snake`s head off, and the snake would go on wriggling. And then the children would cheer, and only after the final wriggle could we go back and start classes again.
I So the kids actually had a knife or something on them, did they?
L Well, the caretaker had a knife. It was… not a knife, something called a panga. It`s a big African knife that they cut the grass with and the caretaker would run up with this panga and go �Chop! � snake finished�.
I And did you have any discipline problems with these kids?
L Well, no. The thing was, when I took over the job, I was told by this very strict teacher that in Tanzania you had to punish the children very firmly. And the way you did that was you slapped them on the leg. And I was, I was twenty remember, yeah twenty years old, and I thought… �You slap them on the leg�, and she said… and she gave me a list of things where they were slapped on the leg. If they forgot a library book � they had a little library. And one day a little girl forgot a library book, and I thought �Oh dear! I`m supposed to slap her on the leg!� And I thought �I can`t do that�. So I didn`t, and in fact I never really had discipline problems.
It was quite funny. I was supposed to teach them everything, I mean it was a junior school, and one of the things I was supposed to teach them was geography, and I knew nothing about geography, but as part of my university course, I`d done something about Sweden, and Swedish – mainly about the language, but as part of the course for some reason we`d done something on Swedish geography. So here I was in Africa � and I thought �I have to teach them geography, I don`t know any geography� � there were no books. So I taught them about Sweden. And funnily enough of all the things I taught I think that was the most successful. They were fascinated in a country with snow, and a country where it didn`t always get light at six o`clock, and it didn`t always get dark at six o`clock, and I think that was…. one of my main successes. Every day I went in, and they`d say �Tell us some more about Sweden!� and I didn`t have a lot to tell, really. But erm… I don`t know if I did anything else very well, but I was very good in telling them about Sweden …

A dream come true
I = Interviewer
D = David

I For most of us, work is something we have to do to stay alive and pay the bills. It`s not something we particularly enjoy, unless you`re one of the lucky few who manage to make a living out of a hobby. David Crook used to work for a firm of accountants in the City of London. He gave up a six figure salary to come to live and work in the tiny village of Little Hampton. I went to visit him last week, and I asked him what made him do it.
D Well, living in London was becoming more and more depressing. My wife and I had always wanted to live in the country, but the problem was finding some sort of job to do � erm because we didn`t have enough money to give up work entirely. Then one weekend, we were driving home after visiting friends, and we happened to see this beautiful windmill for sale. The building itself was in quite good condition, but the machinery for the mill was either � either broken or missing. I think both Lesley, my wife, and I had the same idea at the same time. You see, I`ve always enjoyed playing with engines and motors, taking them to pieces and mending them, and we thought we could buy the mill, renovate the machinery, and make enough from milling wheat to pay the bills.
I And that`s what you did?
D That`s right. The very next day I handed in my notice, and a few weeks later, we were here.
I Was it easy to repair the mill?
D No, not at all. It was terribly difficult to get hold of all the parts I needed. I had to travel all over the country, and I even had to make some of the parts myself. But we finally got it working just before Christmas last year.
I So you`ve been operating now for… eighteen months?
D That`s right.
I And how is the business going?
D Well, I think it`s going all right, actually. We even considered buying another mill, restoring it and selling it for a profit, but then we thought that it would be too much, and that wasn`t the reason we came here, so we didn`t. And we just keep this one mill going.
I Right. And do you have any regrets? Is there anything you miss, for example?
D No, not a thing. It`s hard work, but it`s for ourselves, and I think working together is something we`ve always wanted.
I And what about your boys? You have two teenage sons, don`t you?
D Yes, well at first they missed all their friends, naturally, and living in a small village isn`t at all like living in a London suburb. But it`s fine now, they like it as much as we do.
I Well David, it sounds as though it`s all worked out very well indeed.
D Well, touch wood it seems to have done.