My eight year old daughter took part in her first Eisteddfod this morning. She stood up in front of 50 or more strangers in a hall with terrible acoustics and which was surrounded by a million or more noisy seagulls and delivered a flawless performance of Maybe from Annie.
Flawless, at least I thought, to my musical (but naturally biased) ears. But then the very experienced and very honest adjudicator stood up and told us (in so many words) that actually, she shared my opinion.
The result? A Gold Diploma for a score of 90% or above, and some very positive and encouraging comments from the lady in charge.
I’m not intending to show off, but I think that every so often we parents should be allowed to crow about our kids’ achievements. And this is one of those times.
It was half past ten yesterday evening when I got in. Where had I been out to until that ungodly hour? Picking up my son from a birthday party. No big issue with that – teenagers will be teenagers. Except that my boy is 10 years old. Please note that I’m observing and commenting here rather than complaining. And it’s not even something that I would have brought up if it were not for the fact that when we got home, my 8-year-old daughter was still out at the theatre in town.
Kids these days. They grow up so quickly don’t they?
I don’t think things happened like this when I was 8. Or 10.
Things like this did happen when I was a teenager, obviously, and I was thinking that last night’s “dirty stop out/dad’s taxi” antics would make for good training for those upcoming years. But then, if they’re already partying up a late night storm at 8 and 10 years old, then what exactly will my kids’ teenage years bring? And then, taking the wholly unscientific extrapolation one step further, the student years.
Oh my goodness, I think I need to go and have a sit down.
The kids have been pretty brilliant just lately. They were good while we were away in Norway, they’ve been attentive at school and come home with certificates, their homework has been done without argument. It’s been odd. Odd, but good.
Time for some sort of reward.
To the Waterfront, then. Sushi, boerie rolls, slush and waffles, together with a trip to the Aquarium seemed to do the trick.
My boy played his first game of football for his school today. A bit of a rite of passage moment.
Let the record show that the match was away at St George’s Grammar School in Mowbray. Playing into the wind in the first half, his side were 5-1 up at the break and finished the game 10-3 winners. Alex played left back and, although he didn’t have much to do, nailed each one of the five important tackles he had to make and didn’t put a foot wrong.
Let the record also show that I’m a very proud father.
It’s coming to the end of another school year, and it was the annual prizegiving ceremony for my daughter today. At this age, everyone gets a certificate and a round of applause – a celebration of their varying levels of various achievements. Only once they get older does the Hunger Games style competition kick in with the select few being picked out for individual honours. For the moment, everyone survives. Mostly.
While it’s a happy time, with the kids already sensing the demob happy chaos of their final week, it’s also sad as the ties between kids and their teachers have to be broken as the students move onward and upward. For many reasons, Scoop and her teacher this year have had a particularly close bond, and there were a few tears as Scoop was selected to present some flowers to Mrs M.
It’s not like they won’t see each other again (for starters, they’ve got another 7 school days together): their respective classrooms are virtually next door to one another next year. But it just won’t be the same.
We owe Mrs M a lot. She’s set the foundation for Scoop’s entire academic future. And it looks rosy. No pun intended.