About Sorro…simply.

I stopped teaching eight years ago after a 36year stint. It was fine; don’t feel sorry for me.  I’m 68 and instead of squawking at 11B or mopping furrowed staff brows in my capacity as Deputy Head and bottlewasher of Cranbrook School, I am a bit of a blogger.

How else do I fill my time? I wrote this a few years ago: ‘I might go to the driving range to bash a few golf balls or visit my local, delicious little cinema in cosmopolitan Hawkhurst – the Kino, or have a cup of tea and snooze in front of Countdown. This could mean waking up during Deal or No Deal – not a recipe for personal equilibrium. That normally sends me off for early beer at the Oak and Ivy or the Great House or The Bull.’

Well I don’t go to The Oak and Ivy much and I’m not sure that Deal or No Deal is still gracing our TV screens. I have recently cycled from London to Istanbul, which helped pass the time and made me feel that I’m doing my bit to keep mind and body in reasonable nick. Too many of my contemporaries are ailing or dead. We’re supposed to be the generation of longevity aren’t we?

I’m a man who admits to enjoying pretty much all of my teaching career. Well I would, wouldn’t I? For the last 18 years  have been Deputy at an outstanding Grammar school – yes one of them – in a lovely Wealden, Kentish town just a shade under an hour by train from London. My children went to the school and seem happy, well-educated and haven’t serially killed anyone. They are graduates…and they are employed. Result. Now they are married and..more, I have 3 grandchildren. Cup runneth over and all that.

My sick-making assertions about enjoying a teaching career are based on nice kids, nice school and nice combination of work. I was an English teacher who loved sport. When I left Loughborough circa 1976 I was a PE Teacher who liked English. Both these subjects worked for me. I have spent most of my term-time Saturdays helping, supporting, coaching the youth of Kent. That has meant that on Mondays many of them liked me more than they might otherwise have done. Time given outside your box repays with the time that kids have for you. It’s true of any committed teacher – Art, drama, music, sport, language exchanges, skiing, debating, chess clubs, CCF, charity work, environmental groups, young enterprise…shall I go on? And yes, all these things happened at Cranbrook and more. Enough. Send your kids there. I did.

So I am the son of a Dane long since passed away. Mummy sadly died 5 years ago and brothers and sister have spawned an array of talented young things. I notice how work worries them all – what to do? Where to get it? how to enjoy it when you’re doing it? Work-life balance is a buzzy expression. It means life doesn’t it? Enjoy life. Look after yourself in life and look after those close to you.

Perhaps we learn these lessons a little late. As a divorced man I am hoping that I am better than I was but no guarantees. I’m better at domestic chores (I’ve had to be); better at bank accounts (I’ve had to be); better at listening to what others say rather than switching off (I’ve had to be). And so on.

So this blog, if that is what this is, will gradually, I dare say, reveal a little more of me as time goes on. You will be exposed to my thoughts on all manner of things. A questionable pleasure.

7 Responses to “About Sorro…simply.”

  1. Thomas Beney July 14, 2016 at 9:49 am #


    Great to see you on Monday, congratulations on your famous victory.


  2. Erik September 7, 2016 at 8:58 pm #

    Go Soro!

  3. Sue Barnard January 12, 2021 at 4:55 pm #

    Dear Paul
    Just to say how much I have enjoyed reading your book during the last two lock downs, it was good to read about your adventures. I hope you are keeping safe and well as I am here in Devon. I keep up to date with news through the OCs web site . Take care and belated good wishes for 2021.

    • simplysorro January 12, 2021 at 5:07 pm #

      Hey Sue,
      How good to hear from you.. and thanks for reading the book! We are fine here in Kent and the family (3 grandchildren, all Laura’s; Charlie awaiting divorce!) have coped pretty well. You may have heard that Ruth died very suddenly just over a year ago and that knocked the family sideways. Good tO hear that you are hale and hearty. Now I know you had a son (Gareth??) who was a bright spark. I dread to think how old he is now. Laura is 40 this year. Bloody hell!
      Some good days to reflect on back in the 70s and 80s and 90s. Fondest wishes to you for an improving 2021.

      • Sue Barnard January 13, 2021 at 7:24 pm #

        Dear Paul,

        I was sorry to hear about Ruth. All losses are deaply sad. Could you possibly give me an email address so we can keep in contact which is easier for me? Take care at this nasty time. Kindest regards. Sue

  4. Dai Griffiths July 15, 2022 at 10:19 pm #

    Could not possibly put it as eloquently as this, but agree entirely with the sentiment. I can’t remember a time when I have felt so despondent. A lifetime Social Democrat with no team to support. In regards to Boris, “Elect a clown, expect a Circus” but for God’s sake see it for what it is. Until liars and cheats amongst our politicians are called out, there is no hope!!!

    • simplysorro July 16, 2022 at 6:21 am #

      Thanks Dai. All rather depressing. I much agree about being a Social Democrat with no team to support!

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