My son left for secondary school yesterday, all nerves and brand new uniform. He came back with tales of new lessons and new friends and all seems well, thanks in part to a helpful older sister.
It has got me to thinking about how formative that transition to big school is for us. I don't really remember much of it - too long ago - though I do remember going up for an introductory evening the previous term and seeing that something exotically called chicken fricassee was on the menu. Despite my thorough Comprehensive School education, I still don't know what a fricassee is. Must Google it later.
But this summer I met up with old friends who I realised I had first got to know 34 years ago - friends that I met on the first day of Secondary School. We had a barbeque and joked and chatted about old times and realising that my son (the youngest of the group there) was about to start a similar adventure made me feel a littler older.
If the boy comes out of it with friends like mine in his middle age he won't have done so bad. And he'll be bright enough to learn what a fricassee is, how to make it, and then have the good sense to know that it probably isn't worth the effort.
PS - to save you the effort, it's a generic term for any kind of white sauce usually used in poultry dishes. Though the Greeks use it with pork apparently.
New Lent book: The Glory of the Cross
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