Guess I was quite tired and dozed-off while we were on our way to Chua Chu Kang Campsite. The rainy weather and plush seats on the coach was too comfy that aided me snooze-land.
I took the afternoon off work, the first in the new year to attend our Son's secondary school students orientation-camping and Graduation Night 2008.
That was before I went for Friday prayers at Al-Gufran mosque and then joined by Wifey at Tampines Bus Interchange for groceries shopping at NTUC supermarket in Tampines Mall.
Stopped by the cobbler to get my sandals fixed, then off to Dunman Secondary School where the coach pick-up point for parents to the campsite was.
The school was having this 2-day 1-night camping trip to break the ice and to loosen-up the secondary one children's anxieties with their new school and the new culture they will be exposed to.
The secondary one classes from S1-A to S1-G, guided and mentored by their student leaders and teachers were there to get them to know each other - between fellow students and teachers as well.
Then, as though energized from the food they consumed, came the rousing cheers from the students with their hands-clapping, thigh-slapping chants loud and fun-filled.
It got us parents pumped-up with excitement too... a prelude to interesting events that followed through the evening.
"What are they graduating from?" asked one parent to a student leader.
It was told that all secondary one students came in as "Privates" and when they leave after their graduation tonight, they leave as "Lance-Corporal" ...unofficially of course.
Reminiscent of my army days, it seemed.
We parents had a nice spread of finger-food and refreshments while watching the students from each class putting a show. Dinner and a show!
The objective was for fun and confidence-building for all the students, but the message might not be that transparent as far as the parents were concern, it seemed.
I overheard one parent talking to another that their children's class performed better than the other... I am not all innocent myself too, because I thought our Son's class did the best.
I guess parents will always be parents... their own child will always be the best, regardless.
I did not recognise our Son's own voice over the speakers as it was low and course. Either puberty had set in or most likely because of the constant shouting and cheering that they had been doing for the past 2 days.
Anyway, our Son's class of S1-D came out tops. The judges agreed with me! They won a class trophy - an army helmet garlanded with leaves and butterflies... whatever that symbolizes... and be placed in the trophy display case in their school. Hurray For S1-D!
Class S1-D announced as winners
8:30PM. The show was over. The student did the final hurrah and stood at attention as they "graduated" as Lance-Corporals, bestowed with a stick-on red-seal ribbon.
Parents got back into the coaches while students did their final debrief before we all met each other at school to pick our children up for home.
"Home sweet home" was our Son's gesture when we reached home.
Two days of nondescript toilet experience and the not getting enough time to get a bath was too much of an experience for him. Well, he better get use to it because come 18 years of old, the army will give him much more "experience" than he could bargain for.
He went to sleep as soon as he entered his room and woke up later than his usual hours... ignoring his waiting PC and notebook.