August 17, 2009

Too much of a good thing

The thing I looked forward to the most when I was a kid (okay, when I grew up too) was ... vacations!
Sleep late, roll out of bed late, breakfast at noon, lie on the lawn and watch the clouds drift by, stroll, hang out with friends, watch movies, read and read and read ... oh, the sheer deliciousness of it!
There is a magical something in the very aimlessness and let-your-hair-down quality that these long holidays conjures up. Something that makes you long for it and count the days till you can revel in it again.

This is exactly what my son (and his parents too) was looking forward to when he finished his Std. X Board exams in March this year. In the long, grimy, tough days while he was preparing for his exams, my favourite motivational talk was all about "study now and you'll have such a long vaction ... at least 3-4 months .... after your exams to enjoy yourself" .
And so with tempting pictures of what he would, or rather, would not do in these days of grace, I persuaded him to stick his nose to his books.

The exams wound up and sure enough, his books were flung aside. Then followed a feast of 'doing-nothing', alternated sometimes with 'nothing doing'! Football on the beach, meeting friends, making friends, movies, eating out, staying up late, watching videos till midnight, cell-phoneitis till 2 a.m., doze off at 4, wake up at noon (except when there's football on the beach!)... mmmm, nothing changes except what we choose to do , or rather, don't do during the languid days of Vacation. The deliciousness, though, remains the same .

Or does it? I wonder...
This year seems to have a record-breaking long Vacation. First there was all that drama about the online admissions and the court case about a quota for SSC Board students. And the date of reopening was extended till the first week of August when the normal date is somewhere in mid-July.

Oh that's great, he said and promptly organised some more football in the rain and more outings with his friends. And then went down to his new college to check out the place and other friends and seniors from his school who're already studying there.

He came back filled with anticipation. He had tried out for the football team and had been selected. Classes haven't started but football has!
Oh yes, and there are some college festivals he's been hearing all about and waiting to take part in...

Then, Mumbai was swamped under the swine flu epidemic and all schools and colleges have been shut till the 20th of August . Which means my son's Junior College has still not re-opened.
This time his reaction was "Oh no!" .
Actually it was more like "Oh s..t!" but I freely translated that in the interests of maintaining motherly dignity (don't know why I bother! )
Anyway, back to the son's reaction ... "When are they going to open my college anyway? Its almost the end of August! "

Hmmm .... looks like trouble in paradise. A severe case of discontent if nothing else. He's actually waiting for college to reopen now!
Maybe too much of ennui has got the better of him ?
Are too much of holidays just too much of a good thing?


  1. I think my daughter is related to your son...even though she is younger! At least she managed to get a one day a week babysitting job...and instead of football, she attends Cross Country practice....but she hasn't gotten tired of "vacation" yet...and is the queen of doing as little as possible.

    Good luck Sunita! Maybe he can start reading some of his texts??? Yeah, right....

  2. "Read"? Dont make me hysterical! Lisa, that word just doesn't exist in his vocabulary. (Maybe because it makes up such a major chunk of mine)
    Classes are finally starting today. Big relief!
    I think there is some secret pact among teenagers all over the globe. Drive the parents mad!
    And there seems to be a secret pact among parents too ... pretend you were a saint when you were a teen! (I know I do it all the time) ;D