I’m sitting in my garden around lunchtime, enjoying my Book, Beatrix Potter, when the school children come out to play. Although the school is hidden from view by trees, fences and bushes their happy laughter and playful shouting makes me smile. Some people would frown as their peace and quiet is disrupted by squeals and loud voices calling, but I enjoy listening to the sounds of 50 odd children at play (it’s only a small village school).
I remember when I was there several years ago. Did the people in the houses around me sit in the occasional sun appreciating my laughter? Or was I merely a nuisance to be put up with?
Last year I worked at the after-school-club and was amused to find the children using the same Playstation 1, the same games (Crash Bandicoot) and watching the same videos. Obviously my little village school hasn’t caught up in modern technology.
When I attended the after-school-club as a child I felt privileged to be able to play on a Playstation (we’ve never had one at home) but now they complain it’s not exciting enough. “I’ve got an x-box 360 at home” they boast proudly, glancing disdainfully at the old, well-used black box I love in my childhood.
Oh well, it’s nice to know that as long as the sun stays out they can all benefit from something which can’t be updated and will never become old-fashioned – a good run about in the playground, allowing me to settle back in my chair and dream I was five again.