The other day Michael referred to my as the “fire woman.” I come in and put out fires meaning I am often hired as an adjunct at the last moment to take over from an instructor who left suddenly because of illness, another job, etc. This has happened several times to me when teaching in the public schools and at Universities. Since my highest degree is a masters and not a PhD, I may not easily find a full time position at the University level. At this point, I don’t want to get my PhD. So, I am the fire woman recently called upon by a nearby university to replace an instructor who was teaching Academic English. She left at the last moment for another job.
It is not always an easy situation to be a fire woman but you find yourself adapting and being like a chameleon as you begin to learn a new system of grading, attendance, and students. Many of my current students are now Chinese and Arabic speakers so remembering and even pronouncing the names is challenging.
I don’t always want to be the fire woman. I am hoping that one of these part time jobs will become full time, so I have a place to lay down my hat and call my home. It is much easier to know the fire chief, and all of those working near by me when I call the same station home. I hope that one day I will become full time again. Until then, I put out fires.