REGRETS: This is how they should have been dressed on Tuesday.
REGRETS: This is how they should have been dressed on Tuesday.

Not so smooth transistions

HOW long were these holidays? How many months? Because really, that's the only way to explain how poorly we just did at the first day back to school this term.

I say we, but I think we all know how many people were involved here.

"Tell your father what you just told me,” Tracey said, marching Master11 into the family room last night.

"I had to eat my yoghurt with a banana,” said Master11.

Not getting why this was a problem my gaze flicked from him to his Mum and back again, but their faces weren't giving anything away except a smugness which said I was about to be the butt of their little joke.

"And?” encouraged Tracey.

"And with my Oreo.”

I waited for the penny to drop, but it seemed to be coming from way up in the ozone layer.

"I got nothing,” I told them. "You had yoghurt and a banana and a biccie for lunch. What am I missing?”

Wrong question. It's not what I was missing so much as what he was missing - a spoon. I'd forgotten to add a spoon to the kids' lunch boxes.

At this point he went into some detail about being poked fun at by students and the odd teacher for his resourcefulness, and it occurred to me we must be getting quite the reputation at school.

By which I mean, schools. Plural.

Because this wasn't my first back to school stuff up for the day, although at least the other one didn't involve yoghurt - and in terms of this particular story I use to phrase "back to school” very loosely.

You see, Miss12 goes to a small private school which, as they so often do, starts back a day later than their public school cousins. Or so I was pretty sure we were told, or read somewhere. Or it was hinted at.

Doubts as to my not having made this up were cast when Tracey's phone beeped. Doubts, and accusations.

"BRUCE!” exclaimed Tracey, handing me her phone in what I can only describe as a stabby manner.

The message read:

"Hello, your child, Grace Devereaux, was absent for morning roll call. Please call the College or SMS.”

"Bugger,” I said, which failed in any way, shape or form to relax the muscles on my wife's face. "I doubt we're the only ones,” I tried weakly. "I'm sure there'll be others in the same boat.”

This particular argument would probably have helped my case more if two of the "others” currently not at Miss12's school weren't, at that moment, sitting in our family room.

"I better call my sister,” snapped Tracey.

We needn't have bothered. She'd received the same message from the school as us - two of them, actually - and, presumably, responded with the same exclamation.

So day one and we've been responsible for one of ours and two of our nephews accidentally kept home, and the four which went to school were eating yoghurt with their tongues and fingers for lunch.

I'm sure we'll get back into the swing of school weeks shortly. Probably just in time for the Christmas break.

Gympie Times


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