I remember this song:
Holiday is coming (2ce)
No more morning bells
No teacher’s whip
Good bye teachers
We are going to spend our jolly holiday…
We used to sing with so much joy because we were going home to gorge ourselves with food and play.
It’s summertime, that long holiday period when parents who’s kids are in secondary schools and maybe tertiary institutions have them home all day. It’s a period, we as parents, all look forward to and same for the kids who long for those languid days when they can sleep at 12midnight and wake up at 12noon without the bother of school bells or lecture halls, assignments or projects. And once they open those adorable eyes of theirs, it’s straight to the kitchen to catch up on breakfast, an early lunch before the real lunch in an hour’s time and their online games or before their friends come to visit and they eat up at one sitting, all you’ve cooked for the family for one week!
Yes, we all love the summer holidays, what we called the long vacation in our days..
As a parent, I always look forward to having my teenagers home; I stock the house with all kinds of food and trivia, pay my premium on cable TV and put aside some money for ‘entertainment’.
Kindly note, dears, I never do any of these even for my own pleasure. I don’t watch TV, so I don’t need to pay, I don’t eat at home so there’s no need to stock the house, except for tea. I eat at the office and that one meal is usually enough for the day. My expenses are limited to fuelling my car, paying my NEPA and phone bills and minor sundry bills. I live a very frugal existence.
But all that changes when the kids are home for long; my electricity bill shoots up, I spend money buying fuel for the gen because of course, these super humans always run down my inverter before I blink, and my car because usage increases and somehow, I’m always rummaging in my bag for money because I never seem to have enough cash.
And yet, they’ll whine, after sometime, “Mummy, we are bored”.
I’m not alone in this summer wahala. My friends tell the same story and please note again; we aren’t complaining, just comparing notes and wondering aloud,
“When are schools resuming?”
“My kids eat like locust,” my friend told me the other day, “they finished a pack of milk in two days and it usually takes me 2weeks to finish.”
“Ha, I’m just praying for the holiday to get over, these children want to kill me,” another said.
“The only things my kids don’t eat is what they don’t see, everything else, goes.”
They are perpetually eating, no wonder they grow like weeds.
I got home the other day and saw a pack of Coco Pops I bought just two days before, in the dustbin. It didn’t occur to me that they had eaten it all up, I thought someone mistook the pack for an empty one and dumped it in the bin, but no, it was all eaten up, finished.
same for satis, same for peanut butter, bread doesn’t last one full day, all the drinks in the fridge have disappeared like magic!
I broke into a string of long angry Yoruba words I had heard my mother speak way back when I was growing up. My kids just stared and waited for me to translate my vituperations into bits they could assimilate.
I’m reminded of one fact though, we were once kids ourselves, did we eat our parents to the bone?
Nah, I don’t think so, we were more understanding of the times, so we ate with caution. We never asked for too much because the look our parents gave us was enough to fill us up. Kids these days seem to take some sinister joy telling you the number of things that is finished in the house: “We don’t have eggs in the house, no soap, no sugar, no coco pops, no milk, dstv isn’t showing again, no fuel in the gen, no…
So come next summer, these ones will be working.
They will be working and earning their keep and their feed. I will find places they can go and ‘flip burgers’ or dust chairs in offices of friends and wash plates for their staff, for a fee of course. They will learn to respect MONEY.
Yes, let the holidays come again, there will be a mum waiting to teach her kids a lesson or two about hard work and how much it pays.