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Don’t be deaf to singletons

Don’t be deaf to singletons

posted by Robert Hall  Friday 14th February 2014

It was 3 25 p.m. and four damp children stood forsaken in the school doorway, seeking shelter from the rain and a vantage point to spot the arrival of the delayed cappuccino Skoda .  The playground was deserted except for a large cappuccino puddle which, if it had been ice would have made a commodious skating rink.

At last the cappuccino Skoda made its way carefully through the school gates and circumnavigated what was, by now, the cappuccino lake.  The children tumbled in and off we went. ‘Can we take Simeon home first, then go on to Rose’s because all three of us are singletons and we are spending Valentine’s evening together?’  I saw the DVD of Love Actually protruding from Eleanor’s bag.

Five-year-old Simeon wasn’t much appreciating the giggly excitement of the singletons’ night.  He was looking forward to more important things, so was relieved when we arrived at destination number one and he was repatriated with his family and his football card collection.

Ten minutes later we arrived at destination number two.  The girls stumbled out to begin their giggly evening, and then grandfather chauffeur drove home, enjoying the steady and therapeutic purr of the cappuccino Skoda, in contrast to the excitable giggle of the day’s accounts of skirmishes with boys at school. 

It made me think of the huge capacity for dynamism which young people have.  I reflected as I thought of the minute detail of their social day that they can absorb so much.  Was I like that fifty years ago?  What have I learned over those years?  One thing above all others, perhaps, is the wisdom to be quiet, and simply listen.  I am sure that they think I must be stone deaf. ‘All old folk are stone deaf, right?’  No, but perhaps I am learning when to keep silent, listen and learn.

Ecclesiastes 3


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