As the summer winds down and school is starting for kids across the U.S., I thought it would be fun to take one last look at the challenges of summer vacation. This is another excerpt from my humorous memoir, A Dead Tomato Plant and a Paycheck. Enjoy……
Those fun-packed summer days always made me wonder why we didn’t have year-round school. I personally, thought it was a grand idea, and if a candidate for public office ever wanted to guarantee his election all he’d have to do is run on a platform of year round school. He’d win hands down because I’m sure mothers far outnumber teachers when it comes to the voting public.
On the other hand, I would never vote for anyone like this priest I knew who suggested we close all the schools and give our children the opportunity to learn in a home environment. His reasoning was that it would be good for parents to assume more responsibility for teaching their children, and on one hand that is a grand idea. But in practicality, I considered it a downright rotten idea.
I decided that the idea was probably an attractive to him, because he wasn’t a mother, and he wouldn’t be faced with instant insanity at the thought of a five-year continuation of summer vacation. Undoubtedly, the only thing that keeps us mothers from curling up in a fetal position on the floor of our closets by the middle of August, is the knowledge that school starts in two weeks.
Can you imagine no end to the lament: “There’s nothing to do.”
“Why don’t you playa game with your brother?”
“Well, why don’t you help me clean the house, then I’ll playa game with you.”
“I guess I’ll just watch T.V.”
Or the fights:
“I was watching my program.”
“Mommeeee! Anjanette won’t let me watch what 1 want to watch.”
“Michael, shut up!”
“Mommeee! Michael won’t shut up!”
Or the complaints:
“We never have any fun.”
“All we ever do is work. Don’t you ever work?”
“I always do my chores and David never does his.”
“Why is it always so hot? Why can’t we have a pool?”
“Why do I have to go to bed? I’m not even tired.”
If there was never an end to the challenges of five kids and 11 weeks of summer break from school, it would have been the end of me. Nine months of school each year was the only thing between me and an institution.
Well, that and the fact there wouldn’t have been anyone to take care of those five kids while I was gone. Carl always said if I left, he was going, too.