Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Enlightenment

Some things in life are obvious. Such as prancing out in your underwear when the heavens open:


And executing the reverent ritual of a Saucepan Dance during the Sunday lunch wash up:



But maybe I take too much for granted. For my children, logic is an elusive concept. Years of training have given them some idea of the urgency of rain prancing and both have learnt to belt ballads over the soap suds with a potato masher mic. But when it comes to the realities of every day life, the blindingly obvious is lost on them.

They have a fastidious fear of germs, but it never occurs to them to flush the lavatory.

Their school calls me on frigid winter days to point out that they've forgotten to bring their coats. 

Each week they receive with fresh outrage  the news that they have not earned their pocket money, yet each week they ignore the qualifying requirement to tidy their rooms. 

They have yet to make the connection between their lack of clean tops and the backlog of dirty laundry growing under their duvets. 

Loud are their howls when they don't know that morning's spellings, but it doesn't cross their mind to learn them beforehand. 

There is a daily panic when the 11-year-old can't find an essential fashion item, but it never occurs to her to order her wardrobe.



This disconnect exasperates me. It's wearing to have to remind nine-year-olds to put both shoes on before walking to school. But then as once again I discover I've forgotten to pay the bills that I stashed for safekeeping under the guest room bed, I realise that the blindingly obvious is lost on me too.

The weekly ordeal of scraping items glued to the gunk at the bottom of the recycling bin fails to teach me to rinse beer bottles and baked bean tins before chucking them.

Tense journeys through wilderness with the empty tank light on are a frequent result of my dislike of interrupting Belinda Carlisle to fill up beforehand.

The solid back crusts lining the vicarage saucepans have yet to remind me to boil rice in water.

Keen as I am to celebrate the first summer day in a deckchair, it never occurs to me to buy a new lawnmower. 



My children blame their tender years for their obtuseness. I attribute middle age to mine. I appeal, therefore, to wiser readers: at what age can we expect Enlightenment?



11 comments:

  1. It's true, isn't it? the things my kids neglect to do and thus make life harder for themselves exasperate me too, but I give myself a free pass on late bills, overflowing laundry baskets and failure to make a proper shopping list, because "I'm busy".
    I'm 44, so still waiting for my Enlightenment. Must be soon.

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    Replies
    1. I'm a year older than you and I'm sorry to say there's been no sign of it!

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  2. Not at 30, that's for sure. Although I blame pregnancy. It has done funny things to my brain. Nice grass by the way - give it a few more weeks and it'll look like ours. x

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    Replies
    1. That gras takes months of patience to cultivate!

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  3. I'm 54 and have studied the Age of Enlightenment at university. It eludes me yet. Helping eldest son and wife to move flat next week after moth infestation in previous flat... second son is intending to resign from good job with no other in sight *screams*.... 15 yr old step-d wants to live with her dad and me... and no one will employ me in this new place. I suspect it is because of my age, or lack of 'enlightenment'. Your children look lovely, as does your rev!

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    Replies
    1. That's not my rev, that's my bro! I'm sorry to learn that adulthood doesn't make offspring any easier.

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  4. If you are happy then you are doing it right.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, I'm not happy when I run out of petrol or burn the pans...

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  5. I can't enlighten you on the Age of Enlightenment, but I do think that a video of The Saucepan Dance posted to You Tube would go viral. It could even be the next Gangnam Style dance craze …. x

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    Replies
    1. Actually we do have a very powerful video of the Saucepan Dance and the Broom Tango. There are even vocals.

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