Tuesday 8 September 2015

Vasco Da Gama

Last week there were all sorts of photos of young people all dressed up in their finest, smiling and eagerly looking forward to the first day of school. I didn’t see one picture of happy faces eagerly anticipating the second week of school today.

This is kind of what I remember from my school days. For me it was less than an hour into the first day before I knew that this year wasn’t going to be any different than last year. I would just be a little older, a trifle bigger and expected to absorb at least four hundred times what I learned the year before. Perhaps that is exaggerating a little…300 times more.

I can remember parents saying then what they say now about how the kids are bored halfway through the summer and are actually looking forward to getting back to school. No, we didn’t want to get back to school, we had done pretty much everything that there was to do at home and we needed the parents to step up and find something else to entertain us. We sure as hell didn’t want to write a paper on how Vasco Da Gama “discovered” India back in 1497-99. He found a way to get to India from Portugal, but there were several millions of people living there already. And no, I wouldn’t want to draw a map of Eurasia including rivers, mountain ranges and significant cities no matter how bored I was.
 Retrato de Vasco da Gama.png
I did like to see my school friends, but that could have been arranged with a simple phone call or two. We could have met in the school yard and played a game of work up baseball or touch football and not had to break it off when the bell rang. I would have personally led the group in drinking from the school sprinklers. That was always good for a laugh. Then, back to my place for Kool-Aid and some cookies if mom wasn’t too “bored”.

I guess school is a modern day rite of passage whereby the young learn enough to become contributing members of our society. They can read, write, work computers and figure out how to get to work on time without mom and dad dragging their lazy asses out of bed. They do their job and in time they have kids who will “get bored” half way through the summer.

Strangely enough, that is exactly what Vasco Da Gama’s mom said before she put him on a ship headed into the unknown.

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