I had coffee today with my friends who also help with reading at my son's primary school. As the days are ticked off till the end of my son's Year Six, I reflect on all that I did at that school. There was the PTA, of course, which I was heavily involved with for a time. Then I helped out at the infants' library once a week for five years. And I helped individual children with reading for six years. I so enjoyed that and could have continued, but decided it's time to move on. To what I'm not sure. I don't think there's the scope at secondary school for parents to help out other than in PAs. And I've been there, done that, got the T-shirt. Both of my children have also made it very clear they don't want me to show my face at their respective schools.
What I will continue to do is meet up with my friends -- two men and the bad mum with the tattoos and pierced nose. She's as raunchy as I am. When drilling from the restaurant next door made conversation difficult, I said we should pretend it's a vibrator. Well, the men just didn't know where to look or what to say. Granted, one of them is a grandad and a devout Catholic and the other is rather inhibited. Does them good to go out with us, I say. On the telly was "Big Brother." I just don't get the fascination with this programme. It's all so boring watching members of the "Look At Me" generation brush their teeth and preen in front of mirrors. OK, here's where you all think "It's pretty boring reading about your life too."
The men were asking us what happened to the Spice Girls, and alarmingly, G., the other raunchy woman, and I knew about each and every one of them. Too much time spent at the hairdresser's, I explained. I also have a confession to make: I watch the Katie and Peter Andre programme with my daughter. Somehow I find them endearing. Maybe because I watched them get together on "I'm a Celebrity." Yeah, ok, I admit to watching that. But that particular one was downright funny because of those two.
I will miss my friends, but we don't live far from each other. Indeed, A., the inhibited one, lives just a few doors down. Unfortunately, he suffers from severe short-term memory loss and you never know if he's going to remember you or not. He had a brain tumour some years back and isn't even supposed to be alive. But they zapped it good and proper with the radiation and he went on to get his wife pregnant twice (the docs said he'd be sterile probably) although unfortunately she had an ectopic pregnancy the first time. The second pregnancy resulted in the most gorgeous little girl. A. can't walk too well now because of nerve damage from the radiation so he has one of those motorised scooters. I call him Easy Rider. His little girl rides her scooter along next to him and gets on board when she gets tired. I smile every time I see A. He is such a lovely fellow. He was lovely before his illness, and he's lost none of his loveliness. He has to be a stay-at-home dad now because his short-term memory loss eventually meant he couldn't continue to do his job. Instead his wife has gone back to work. He's one of those people you feel proud to know.
I thought I would feel a bit sad about the passing of this stage in my children's lives, but I'm not. I think I will now look into doing something for me. I've wanted to take a massage course. I'm quite good at giving them, probably because I've had so much physiotherapy on my back I can feel the source of tension in others'. And the fellow in the village who did Shiatsu massages has left so there's an opening. Well, we'll see what happens.